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A Toil of Two Cities

A Toil of Two Cities!

Richard V. Snyder


With apologies to Mr. Dickens, our MTT-S IWS team has just returned from our March, 2012 expedition to China, having spent an exhausting 5 days finalizing the venue for IWS2013 ( in Beijing and reviewing two possible locations in Xi’an for IWS 2014! Arriving in Beijing, China on Sunday, we started with a reception for both Chinese and non-Chinese team-mates.

cncc in beijing china

Early on Monday, we visited and negotiated at the IWS2013 site, the China National Conference Center (called the CNCC,, located right at the location of the 2008 Olympic Games. The afternoon was spent with detailed meetings between the various team-mates, discussing conference details. Thanks to the tireless efforts of our webmaster, Tim Lee, and his IEEE colleague, John Wettlaufer, we were able to display our new and quickly-evolving IWS website, to the admiration of all!   After late-night social gatherings and additional intense negotiations on Tuesday, we agreed on space, availability and affordability.  Our General Chair (Prof. Zhenge Feng), General Co-Chair (Dr. Charlie Jackson), our TPC Chair (Dr. Mohammad Madihian) and TPC Co-Chair (Prof. Wei Hong) discussed additional conference details as well.   As a result, our exhibition will be starting on the ground floor of the most prestigious exhibition center in China, with almost 60,000 square feet of exhibition space.  The conference will be located two levels above, with direct access, and will have space for up to 6 parallel sessions, large plenary, receptions, workshops, etc.  Our headquarters hotel is the 5-star Intercontinental Beijing Beichen (, directly connected to the CNCC.  Another hotel, the 4-star CNCC Grand Hotel ( , is also directly connected to CNCC. There are many 2 and 3 star hotels within a few subway stops, with the station right outside the CNCC.  All participants will be very impressed with our location and the facilities.


 Late on Tuesday, we flew to Xi’an, the proposed site for IWS2014.  I must say that the city of Xi’an, located in the historic province of Shaanxi, literally rolled out the red carpet for us!  With our 6-row golf cart transporting us between the enormous exhibition facility buildings, my eyes focused on “my name in lights”…very big lights!  The photo is rather self-explanatory.  The Xi’an Qujiang International Conference and Exhibition Center (QiCEC) is located at one end of the complex, and was just finished (December 3, 2011).  

qujiang international conference and exhibition centerIt is the most impressive conference center I have ever seen, and believe me, I have seen plenty!  The technology is amazing, the architecture spectacular, everything built with “the best money can buy”.  We could hold four IMS-sized meetings in this building at the same time, without interference, and each would have its own spectacular facility. I really did not think we could begin to afford this building, as it would do credit to a United Nations meeting. Our host, Jiguang Zhou, the Deputy General Manager, explained that the center was just completed and it is intended to become the major meeting center in China. Following our visit to this center, we were transported to our interview with the Shaanxi Provincial Vice-Governor, Dr. Qinjian Lou.  Ushered in by a phalanx of “Men in Black” and beautifully dressed women, we entered his rather palatial office area.  I was seated next to the Governor, with a simultaneous translator seated next to my left ear.   As the Governor is a PhD in electrical engineering (Alas, communication and computers rather than microwave), we hit it off rather well.  Suffice it to say that the Vice-Governor committed the local government to support IWS2014, assuring us that local engineers and companies will attend, and that costs will be supported thus making possible the use of beautiful local facilities.  I did invite him to attend IMS as my guest, but he said that his schedule would not so permit, and that he would send local engineers as representatives of the Xi’an Technology Enterprise zone and the Xixian New Area zone (home of the largest China Unicom facility in China).   Note that the local companies number 16,000 (83 new ventures per week), and the focus in this Xi’an city area, with 49 universities and 800,000 students (out of a Xi’an population of 8,000,000), is electronics, certainly including microwave electronics.  Accompanied by the local Xi’an-based CCPIT staff  and the Deputy Director (Dr. Yang Ming Rui) of the Enterprise zone (called “Hi-Tech Industries Development Zone”), we next visited one of those companies, a very successful manufacturer of RF connectors and cable assemblies, called Forstar. xian 3aWe were accompanied by our prospective General Chair for IWS2014, Professor Xiaowei Shi of Xidian University. Again welcomed in spectacular fashion, we were given a tour of the facility, and of course I felt very much at home in a DC-50 GHz environment!  Our visit to Forstar was capped with a tea service in a room that would do credit to many Buddhist temples.  The President, “Jerry” Guo, gave us copies of his book.  Although written in Chinese, his philosophy of “loving the person” and applying this to employees, customers and visitors was very clear to me, and I could see why he was so successful.  We next visited the Pico exhibition center, also in Xi’an.  Although not as technologically advanced as QiCEC Xi’an center ( , it was also very impressive, with four large exhibition halls and with beautiful meeting facilities directly connected to the exhibition and catering areas.  We will have a difficult decision to make between the two Xi’an centers, but we can’t lose either way. Again, social events (banquets, really) followed each of our gatherings, and the negotiations were really accomplished during these enjoyable occasions. Following a flight from Xi’an to Beijing and a several hour layover, the long flight from Beijing back to the US was spent (at least by me) trying to catch up on the 4 nights with only a very few sleeping hours.


In conclusion, I believe we have secured excellent facilities for both IWS2013 and potentially for IWS2014, with very good prospects for fulfilling our short-term goal of 1000 attendees and 200 booths in 2013, and much greater expectations for 2014.  Overall, we intend to use this MTT-S “reach-out” effort to generate support for the Chinese microwave community and to thereby realize a dramatic increase in IEEE MTT-S membership in China.  As of now, we have taken the first few of many steps towards these goals but will need the support and participation of the IEEE and the MTT Society to show the Chinese microwave engineering community (and indeed the rest of the world) just what the IEEE and MTT-S can and will do!


As well as myself, the visiting team (not everyone at all stages of the trip) included:


IWS2013 General Chair Prof. Zhenge Feng

IWS2013 General Co-Chair Dr. Charlie Jackson

IWS2013 TPC Chair Dr. Mohammad Madihian

IWS2013 TPC Co-Chair Prof. Wei Hong

IWS 2013 Branding Chair Prof. Junfa Mao

Ning Hua (IEEE Beijing Office Director)

Prof. Ke Wu (IWS EXCOM)

Prof. Quan Xue (IWS EXCOM)

Lee Wood (MPA)

Kevin Lepine (MPA)

Jin-Cheng Zhao (Secretary General, Beijing CCPIT sub-council)

Chen Jun  (President, CCPIT. Shannxi Sub-Council)

Other Staff from CCPIT, Beijing Sub-Council

Last Updated on 11 April 2012