28 APAC / Issue 4 2018 , Guangzhou Envisions Future with its Stories of Innovation Shared at Boao Recently, Guangzhou inspired imagination of future cities with Guangzhou stories of innovation at Boao, Hainan, China. On the 9th April 2018, Guangzhou, with its growing global presence in science and technology, inspired imagination of future cities with Guangzhou stories of innovation at Boao, Hainan, China. During the Boao Forum for Asia annual conference 2018, the Guangzhou Municipal People’s Government, held at Boao its city image promotional roadshow for the “Conversations between Guangzhou and the World.” Unlike previous promotional roadshows, this time at Boao, ten storytellers of Guangzhou from such fields as artificial intelligence, autonomous driving, international medical assistance and urban planning become the focus of the event. Through their distinct career trajectory in Guangzhou, they, brimming with confidence, told the world about their stories of innovation, sharing the new experiences of a Chinese city in innovation and opening-up, and showcasing the charm and vitality of their world- class city. Among the storytellers are entrepreneurs from the emerging industries of artificial intelligence, next-generation information technology, and biomedicine (IAB) in Guangzhou, like the manufacturer of the world’s first passenger drone and global leader in 3D bioprinting. Also among them are Guangzhou’s overseas medical assistance team to the South Pacific countries and its urban planners helping African cities. Each of them recounted how Guangzhou has been carrying out China’s pursuit of opening-up and innovation. Innovators’ telling the Guangzhou stories is in fact reflecting the city’s openness, inclusiveness and self-motivated innovation. It is considered very common, in the eyes of those attendees at the event, that many cities have their promotional videos and may well host other promotional events overseas, but such innovative storytelling by Guangzhou is a real eye-opener. Former French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin, “le Monsieur Chine”, a good friend of China, praised the storytelling as a very good practice. At such international events as BFA that gather business and political leaders from Asia and the rest of the world, it is a great opportunity for Guangzhou to showcase its talent and strengths so that the world knows better about Guangzhou today and about its future. Dennis Bracy, Chief Executive Officer of the US-China Clean Energy Forum, said that their stories of Guangzhou are not only about its economic growth or high-rise buildings but full of humanistic sentiments and that with the stories featuring people come naturally the development of science and technology. Tapping this grand event for its city image promotion, Guangzhou has not only won wide acclaim from those international big names but also attracted international projects. Many multinational corporations, for example, have expressed the intention to seize the opportunity for growth from the initiative of developing the Guangdong- Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. These prospective projects mainly focus on such areas as scientific and technological innovation, digital economy and artificial intelligence, which coincide with the development goals of Guangzhou. Joining global political and business leaders at the Boao Forum for Asia annual conference 2018 in discussions on open and innovative thinking and concrete measures, the storytellers of the Guangzhou, a national pioneer in reform and opening-up, through their narrative interpretations of innovation, demonstrated the city’s self-confidence in China’s new round of greater openness and innovation.