The CES 2014 North America Conference, co-hosted by Purdue University and Henan University, was held at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana on March 14-16. The theme of the conference was “China’s Further Economic Reform and Its Implications for the World Economy.” CES President Jinan Ni, Associate Dean Justin Tobias and Dean Chris Early from Krannert School of management Purdue University, Dean Bingtao Song from School of Economics Henan University and Department Chair Ken Foster from Agricultural Economics Purdue University made opening remarks. Despite difficult weather conditions in the Midwest, the conference was a great success. There were 127 registered attendees, with a large number of Ph.D. students, many who were attending a CES conference for the first time. The conference drew faculty members and students from a wide variety of institutions in the USA and Canada, as well as a few from China and Europe. The facts that were so many first-time attendees, including young attendees, at the conference indicates the presence of a large, untapped market for CES in North America.
The highlight of the conference was four distinguished keynote speakers – Professor Guijin Lin (University of International Business and Economics (UIBE), Nobel Laureate Professor Edward Prescott (Arizona State University), Professor Neng Wang (Columbia University, NBER, and Shanghai University) and Professor Yang Yao (Peking University). There were two Round Table Forums, twenty-seven sessions with 3-4 research papers apiece, and a continuing education program titled “Training Workshop on Spatial Social Sciences.”
The CES leadership was very competently assisted by a team of event coordinators with the Purdue University Conference group. High quality catering was provided at the conference; Attendees were provided with a buffet luncheon and a banquet dinner on the first day and a buffet Chinese luncheon on the second day. President Jinlan Ni presented the Gregory Chow Best Paper Award to Wei Wang, a Ph.D. candidate from Washington University. Following the banquet dinner was a performance of Chinese dance by the Confucius Institute’s Purdue Performing Art Troupe and a performance of traditional American songs by the Purdue Men’s Glee Club. While the CES leadership is working on administering a survey of conference attendees, unsolicited feedback from the conference has so far been overwhelmingly positive.