Guangzhou is trying to return to its glory days by building a Sun Yat-sen research institute and museum that highlight the city's importance during a crucial period of Chinese history. The institute, in Tianhe district, is the latest reminder of the paramount role that Guangzhou played in the toppling of the Qing dynasty and the capture of power by the Kuomintang towards the end of the 1920s. Discussion of this period was once taboo, but the thaw in relations between Beijing and the Kuomintang - which fled to Taiwan after losing the civil war to the Communist Party - is allowing Guangzhou to look back on its past. Wang Jie, director of the Guangdong Academy of Social Sciences' Sun Yat-sen Research Institute, said his organisation would be incorporated into the Sun Yat-sen International Studies Institute to be built by the end of the year. Already this year Guangzhou has renovated a museum marking the second time Sun made Guangzhou his power base and has also opened up the site of the third Communist Party Congress held in 1923 where the decision was taken to co-operate with the nationalists. Another museum costing 100 million yuan is being built in Huangpu district to commemorate the Wuchang Uprising on October 10, 1911, that led to the overthrow of the Qing dynasty. Although scholars have always been free to study Sun as an historical figure, Professor Wang said there was a dearth of research material on the man known as the father of modern China. The public have had much less access to information about him even though he is one of Guangdong's most valuable historical assets and one of China's best known personalities. 'I don't find the emphasis on [Sun] surprising as he is an important resource, but Guangzhou people seldom discuss revolutionary or political issues,' said Yuan Weishi, a historian at Sun Yat-sen University. Explaining why Guangzhou appeared to be focusing on the nationalist period to project its image, Professor Wang said: 'There were only two times in history when all eyes were on Guangzhou - during the democratic revolution of the 1920s and the reform and opening-up period after 1978.' The city did not come into its own again until the 1980s when its location again made it the natural choice to spearhead economic reforms.