The 2013 IBM Systems & Technology Group Technical Enablement Conference is pleased to welcome you in Shanghai, the last host of the World Expo.
The event will take place at:
Le Royal Méridien Shanghai
789 Nanjing Road East
Shanghai, Shanghai 200001
Shanghai – where Western customs and Chinese traditions intertwine
Once known as Paris of the East, Shanghai in the early 20th Century laid claim to being the most glamorous and cultured city in China—and all of Asia. These days, Shanghai is rapidly regaining its reputation as a cosmopolitan city. While Beijing remains the capital, the center of politics, culture, information and academia, the world knows Shanghai as China's financial center, the center of fashion, and a progressive enterprising city open to new ideas.
Unlike Beijing, Shanghai's history does not date far back. Until 1842 it was a sleepy fishing village. Its name in Chinese literally means on the sea, which describes its advantageous location on the banks of the Yangtze (Chang Jiang) River delta, close to the silk and tea producing regions of China. Its geography propelled it to prominence when sea trade with the West became more important.
By the end of the 19th century, Britain declared Shanghai a treaty port, and the sleepy village was suddenly transformed into a cosmopolitan destination. The British, French and Americans took up autonomous concession zones in the city, each of which was independent of Chinese law. All three brought colonial influences to the city, which can still be seen today in the European architecture of the buildings on the Bund and in the Old French Concession area.
In 1992, reforms opened to new economic conditions that allowed Shanghai to regain its place as the country's economic head. A booming construction industry, increased private businesses, larger personal incomes and growing foreign investments made it one of the most industrialized bases in the country. The city's resurgence in economic prosperity is best exemplified in the development of the Pu Dong New Area. The Shanghai government invested millions of dollars on infrastructure projects in Pu Dong, such as the aggressively modern
Pu Dong International Airport. With its economic progress, Shanghai continues to undergo a renaissance of its arts and culture. The impressive Shanghai Museum and the architecturally striking Shanghai Grand Theater are just two examples of the city's cultural rebirth. Since the mid-1990s the city has gained a reputation for experimental and extravagant architecture rivaled domestically only by Beijing. The Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center contains a model of the city as planners anticipate it for the 2010 World Expo, including the rebuilding of entire neighborhoods.