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sgs _16eng by benbenzhou


									                                                                                                             June 2002 • Volume 16
Available at:
                                              CityU R & D Centres:
         In this issue                               Reaching Out to the Pearl River Delta

 English Section
                                              C    ityU has taken a major step in
                                                   enhancing its research profile by
                                              establishing two applied R & D centres
                                                                                                 and include “commercialisation,
                                                                                                 licensing technology to companies and
                                                                                                 developing our own products.”
                                              in the Pearl River Delta (PRD) region.             Interaction with industry also exposes
                                              The Centres will tap into the talent,              academics to fresh ideas on applied R
 R & D Centres ....................... 1
                                              facilities and opportunities for                   & D directions, says Dr Cheung.
                                              commercialisation of research outputs              China as a whole and the PRD in
                                              available in the Mainland and will help            particular represent a huge market for
 Research Diary ...................... 3
                                              expand collaboration with
                                              research institutes and industrial
                                              and commercial partners.
 News from Research Office ... 4
                                              The applied R & D centre in
                                              Shenzhen, located in the
 Applied R & D ...................... 6       Shenzhen Virtual University Park,
                                              houses the Industrial Technologies
                                              Centre (headed by Dr Albert
 Career Development ............. 7           Cheung, Head, FLC) and the
                                              Biotech and Health Centre
                                              (headed by Prof W F Fong,
 CUPA News ........................ 10        A s s o c i a t e Vi c e - P r e s i d e n t /
                                              Research). The applied R & D                       Shenzhen Virtual University Park — home to
                                              centre in Zhuhai, based in the                     CityU’s Shenzhen Applied R & D Centres
                                              Southern Software Park and
                                              officially launched in May, houses the                    commercialised outputs. “Not only is
          !                                   IT Centre (headed by Prof Hong Yan,                       there manufacturing there,” says Dr
                                              Chair Professor, IT).                                     Cheung, “but it’s also becoming a very
          ! KKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK N                                                             important market place. Shenzhen is
                                              Opportunities                                             now the number one exporter in
          !" KKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK O      Part of CityU’s mission is to co-operate
                                              with industry, commerce and the                           The Centres have access to a large pool
                                              community, and Prof Fong says the                         of talented people. CityU academics
                                              Centres will facilitate closer ties with                  will lead the projects, and researchers,
                                              industry in the PRD. This area has a high                 engineers and technicians will be
                     The Editorial Board
                                              concentration of Hong Kong industry                       recruited from mainland China.
                     welcomes articles,
                                              alongside rapidly developing mainland                     Research students and undergraduates
                     photos and ideas.
                                              Chinese companies. “In China you can                      from Mainland universities will have the
                     Please send your
                                              have a lot of industrial partners with so                 opportunity to work and train at the
                     contributions to Ms
                                              many companies starting up,” says Prof                    Centres, and Prof Fong envisages the
                     Belinda Luk c/o                                                                    Centres fulfilling “both research and
                                              Yan. The Centres are based on CityU’s
 School of Graduate Studies (Fax: 2788-                                                                 educational purposes.” The Centres will
                                              research strengths and reflect local
 9940; E-mail:                                                                  also be involved in wider training, for
                                              i n d u s t r y ’s n e e d f o r i n n o v a t i v e
                                              technology. Applied R & D activities
                                              build on basic research, says Prof Yan,                                continued on next page ☞

June 2002
            R & D Centres

            example through seminars and courses.        academics are not experienced in
                                                         commercialisation, says Prof Fong,
                                                                                                     Dean’s Vision for the SLW
            All three heads anticipate synergistic
            relationships between the research           CityU’s Industrial and Business             In a recent interview in the Mainland
            groups at CityU and the Centres. “R &        Development Office (IBDO) will              newspaper People’s Daily Prof Mike
            D work is not isolated,” says Dr Cheung.     provide valuable input: “I think IBDO       McConville, Dean of the School of
                                                         will be very active in collaborating with   Law, outlined his vision for the
            “It triggers problems and this then
                                                         each project to do the marketing, to line   School. “The prime objective is to
            stimulates the basic research.” “The
                                                         up investors or to find industrial          provide the best education to students
            research group in Hong Kong has a very
                                                         collaborators.” The Centres are             and to create an environment and
            active role to play in the development                                                   culture so that students and teaching
                                                            supported with CityU start-up
                                                            funding, similar to existing Research    staff can develop their profession and
                                                            Centres, but within a few years they     their skills and contribute to society.”
                                                            are expected to be self-dependent.       He also wants to cultivate
                                                            “These Centres are not set up for        professionals with expertise in both
                                                                                                     Chinese and Western law.
                                                            profit making,” says Prof Fong. Any
                                                            income generated will be ploughed        The School has a key role as a link
                                                            back in to support future activities.    between Chinese and Western law,
                                                            Commercial activities will be carried    Prof McConville said. Expertise in
                                                            out by future spin-off companies that    Chinese, common, and international
                                                            will be financially independent from     law gives the School its competitive
                                                            the Centres.                             edge. These areas are reflected in the
                                                                                                     streams of the School’s master’s
             CityU’s Applied R & D Centres at Zhuhai        The success of the projects requires     degrees. Through these degrees, said
                                                            strong commitment from staff as the      Prof McConville, students can
            of the projects in Shenzhen and              development and travel entail               broaden their horizons and develop
            Zhuhai,” says Prof Fong, “and we’re          additional work, says Prof Fong. “The       their understanding of international
            increasing the exposure of our own           important challenge is to arouse the        trade laws and China, UK and US
            research groups to their Chinese             interest of CityU staff to be involved,     legal systems.
            counterparts, so it’s a two-way street.”     and then we want to help them carry
            As well as project involvement, visits       their original plan through to fruition.”   The interview appeared in People’s
            and placements, CityU students will                                                      Daily on 14 April, and can be viewed
            benefit through valuable input into          The projects                                (in Chinese) at
            teaching. For example, Dr Cheung says,       A project funded through the Centres,       Newsletter Advisory Board
            “Engineering education is broader than       says Prof Fong, must be applied in          Prof P S Chung, Vice-President
            just lecturing and practical work in the     nature, have specific reasons for being     (Research) and Dean of the School of
            lab, and commercialisation is actually       based in the PRD, and have realistic        Graduate Studies
            a large part of engineering, so we think     possibilities for commercialisation         Prof W F Fong, Assoc. Vice-President
            building up applied R & D will benefit       within a few years.                         (Research)
            our students down the line.”                                                             Prof Y V Hui, Assoc. Dean, School of
                                                         The Industrial Technologies Centre          Graduate Studies
            CityU researchers can submit project         concentrates on hardware development
            ideas at any time, and projects could                                                    Mr Bryan Bachner,
                                                         through the industrial application of       School of Law
            eventually develop into spin-off             technologies in areas such as
            companies. “In some sense our Centres                                                    Dr James Caldwell,
                                                         telecommunications and engineering          Department of Mathematics
            are an incubator,” says Prof Yan, “and       management. Current project areas
            we want some of the researchers to go                                                    Prof Ferdinand Gul,
                                                         include wireless communication,             Department of Accountancy
            out and start their own businesses.” The     automated production and packaging,
            Centres can act as a link between CityU                                                  Dr Randy LaPolla,
                                                         and encryption.                             Department of Chinese, Translation and
            staff and institutions or companies in the
                                                         The Biotech and Health Centre projects      Linguistics
            PRD to help form collaborations or
                                                         involve collaboration with local            Miss Connie Yuen,
            consultancy arrangements or for
                                                         government, hospitals and laboratories.     Representative from CityU Postgraduate
            marketing research results in China.                                                     Association
                                                         They will explore using mangrove for
                                                         waste treatment, using DNA chip
            Challenges                                                                               Editorial Board
                                                         technology to develop medical
                                                                                                     Mrs Linda Cheng,
            “The biggest challenge,” says Prof Yan,      diagnostic kits, and the formulation,       Research Office
            “is knowing what your audience wants         standardisation and commercialisation
                                                                                                     Ms Vicki Geall,
            and transferring research outputs into       of herbal drugs.                            Research Office
            marketable technologies.” “I think the
                                                         The IT Centre will develop computer         Ms Belinda Luk,
            challenge is dissemination and
                                                         software, and the current projects cover    School of Graduate Studies
            promotion of the project deliverables,”
                                                         diverse areas (please see page 3 for more   Mr H Y Wong,
            says Dr Cheung, “and how to reach as
                                                         details).                                   Industrial and Business Development
            wide an audience as possible.” As                                                        Office
                                                                                    — Vicki Geall

                                                                                                                                 Research Diary

8 February 2002
                                                                              15 May 2002
Appointment of Professor (Chair) of Mathematics
                                                                              Zhuhai Applied R & D Centres Opening Ceremony
Prof Philippe Ciarlet joins CityU from the Universite Pierre                  Southern Software Park, Zhuhai
et Marie Curie, France. He is a leading world figure in
several areas of pure and applied mathematics. He has won                     The launch of the Zhuhai Applied R & D Centres marks an
both the Poncelet Prize and the Grand Prize awarded by                        exciting milestone in CityU’s strategic development and
                    the French Academy of Sciences, and                       reaffirms CityU’s commitment to promoting applied
                    the Alexander von Humboldt Research                       research. “CityU believes that it is mutually advantageous
                    Award. Prof Ciarlet is a member of,                       to the economic development of both Hong Kong and the
                    among others, the Academia Europaea                       Pearl River Delta if co-operation is made utilising the
                    and the French Academy of Sciences.                       strengths from both sides,” said Prof P S Chung (Vice-
                                                                              President/Research) in his opening speech.

7 March 2002
Careers Seminar for Research Degree Students:
Preparation and Development for the Way Ahead
Over 120 research students attended this careers seminar,
which was jointly organised by the School of Graduate
Studies and the Student Development Services. The seminar
addressed career opportunities for research degree graduates
                        through guest talks, a video
                        presentation and group discussions.
                          See page 7 for coverage of the seminar.

                                                                               From left: Prof Hong Yan (Centre Director), Prof Y S Wong (VP/IA),
                                                                               Mr Luo Chunbai (Vice Secretary-General of Zhuhai), Prof P S Chung
                                                                               (VP/RS), Mr Lin Xingdao (Vice Mayor of Zhuhai), Mr Mu Rongguang
                                                                               (President of Southern Software Park Development Co. Ltd.), Prof
7–10 March 2002
                                                                               W F Fong (Associate VP/RS)
Hong Kong Information Infrastructure Expo and
Conference 2002
                                                                              The Zhuhai Applied R & D
The Hong Kong Trade Development Council staged the fifth
Information Infrastructure Expo, “Igniting the Power of                       Centres house the Information
Information and Communications Technologies”, at the                          Technology Centre, headed by
Convention and Exhibition Centre. Eight CityU companies                       Prof Hong Yan, Chair Professor
                        and the School of Continuing and                      of Computer Engineering. The
                        Professional Education showcased                      Centre’s six projects encompass Prof Hong Yan (left) discusses
                        their latest IT-related products and
                                                                              applied IT research in:         the projects with guests
                                                                              • interactive cartoon imaging for education and
                                                                              • medical informatics, including surgical simulation
21 March 2002                                                                   software;
                                                                                                                                                    Graduate Studies and Research Newsletter

                                                                              • integrated building and architecture software;
Croucher Foundation Senior Research Fellowship
                                                                              • Internet server systems;
Prof S T Lee was awarded a 2002–03 fellowship at an
awards ceremony officiated by Donald Tsang, Chief                             • language information engineering; and
Secretary for Administration. Prof Lee is Director of the                     • active media systems.
Centre of Super-Diamond and Advanced Films and Chair
Professor of Physics and Materials Science. His year-long                     Guests at the opening ceremony—including local
fellowship will run from January 2003. Prof Lee will spend                    dignitaries, industrialists, academics and business
                   his fellowship in Hong Kong continuing                     professionals—had the opportunity to see displays and
                   his research on nanoscience and                            demonstrations of the projects and to discuss the research
                   nanomaterials and organic light emitting
                   diodes.                                                    with the CityU principal investigators.
                                                                              See page 1 for an article on CityU’s Zhuhai and Shenzhen Applied
                   See page 4 for details of one of Prof Lee’s latest
                                                                              R & D Centres.
                   research projects.

June 2002
            News from Research Office

                          CAV Group Research Projects                                              CERG 2003/2004
                                                                                                   Longer-term Research Grants
            C     ityU’s two latest RGC-funded
                  Central Allocation Vote group
            research projects may be in diverse
                                                       Non-destructive Inspection of
                                                       Buildings and Structures Using
                                                                                                   The Research Grants Council (RGC) is
                                                                                                   introducing a new template to support
                                                       Shearography ($4 million)                   longer-term Competitive Earmarked
            fields, but they share two key features:                                               Research Grant (CERG) projects,
            • they build on current CityU research     This project, headed by Prof Michael        starting with the 2003/2004 funding
                strengths, and                         Hung (Chair Professor of Building and       exercise (applications in June to
            • they pool local expertise through        Construction and Electronic                 October 2002).
                close collaboration—both within        Engineering), addresses a current
                                                       serious public concern in Hong Kong:        The longer-term grants will
                CityU and with academics at other
                                                       the safety of our buildings. Recent         • cater for projects lasting for three
                Hong Kong universities.
                                                       legislative effort has attempted to            to five years;
                                                       mandate building inspections, says Prof     • apply to all disciplines;
            Science and Technology of
                                                       Hung, but the inspection technology         • follow CERG procedures and peer
            Silicon Nanowires ($1.6 million)           currently available cannot adequately          review standards;
            Prof S T Lee, Director of the Centre of    assess building integrity.                  • compete for funds alongside other
            Super-Diamond and Advanced Films                                                          CERG proposals; and
            (COSDAF) and Chair Professor of                                                        • have certain conditions for the grant
            Physics and Materials Science, will lead                                                  loadings of principal investigators
            this research on silicon nanowires.                                                       (PIs).
            Nanowires are a key material in
                                                                                                   More information can be obtained from
            nanotechnology (the science and
                                                                                                   the Research Office (RO).
            technology of nanometre scale objects).
            The project builds on the successful
            work of Prof Lee and other team                                                        CERG Computerisation
            members in the synthesis and                                                           RGC is developing a computerised
            conversion of nanowires, especially                                                    system for administering CERGs. In
            those made of silicon. Silicon is of                                                   February, CityU took part in a trial run
            special interest, says Prof Lee, because                                               to test electronic proposal preparation
                                                       The project aims to develop new or
            it is the most widely used and studied                                                 and internal vetting processes. Selected
                                                       improved building inspection methods.
            semiconducting material, particularly in                                               PIs were asked to prepare mock
                                                       These will be based on shearography
            the electronics industry.                                                              proposals using a web-based form.
                                                       — a novel laser measurement
                                                                                                   Proposals were then processed
            The project objectives are to understand   technique invented by Prof Hung. To
                                                                                                   electronically, as shown in this
            the growth mechanisms of silicon           date, shearography has been used
                                                                                                   simplified diagram:
            nanowires (SiNWs) and develop a            successfully in the testing of aerospace
            growth model; to characterise and study    and aircraft structures (for example, the
                                                                                                                PI prepares web-based
            the electronic, optical and chemical       US Federal Aviation Administration has                   proposal and submits
            properties of SiNWs; and, to develop       endorsed the technique for inspecting                    it to dept. head
            theoretical models and perform             aircraft tyres). This project seeks new                                             changes
            computations to understand and predict     applications of the technique, initially                 Dept. head endorses or
                                                                                                                recommends changes
            the growth and properties of SiNWs.        in buildings but with the potential to
                                                                                                    PI                          endorses
            To achieve these objectives, a project     be diversified to the inspection of          resubmits
                                                                                                                RO does administrative
            team with multidisciplinary expertise      tunnels, bridges, dams, railways, power      to RO
                                                                                                                duties and endorses or
            has been formed. Members come from         plants and other infrastructures.                        asks PI to resubmit if
                                                                                                                additional info. required
            three CityU departments (Physics and       Colleagues in CityU’s Building and                       or changes suggested
            Materials Science, Electronic              Construction and Electronic                                              endorses
            Engineering and Biology and Chemistry)     Engineering departments will                             CityU endorses and
            and the Physics departments of HKU         collaborate closely on this project.                     submits it to RGC
            and HKUST, with three members from         Researchers from the Civil Engineering
            Canada, Germany and the USA.               departments at HKU and HKUST and            In this year’s application round, RGC
                                                       the Department of Civil and Structural      will pilot the system with a sample of
                                                       Engineering at PolyU will provide           the proposals. PIs submitting
                                                       valuable input.                             applications to the Physical Sciences
                                                       The RGC grants CAV funding to group         panel will be asked to submit their
                                                       research projects annually. In this         proposals electronically. RO will
                                                       round, CityU received 40 percent of the     provide advice and support on the
                                                       total funding for group projects.           process. Please contact RO if you have
                                                                                                   any queries.

                                                                                                             News from Research Office

               Research Committee Meetings on                                                     AoE 3rd Round Submissions
                  5 March and 14 May 2002                                                         CityU has submitted four proposals in
                                                                                                  the third round of the UGC’s Areas of
Research Funding Support                       Research Staff Appointments                        Excellence Scheme. The proposed
The Committee considered 133                   The Committee has made several                     projects and the respective lead CityU
Strategic Research Grant applications          recommendations on research staff                  investigators are:
                                                                                                  • An AoE Centre on Nanomaterials —
for 2001-02 and, on the                        appointments:
                                                                                                    Prof David S Y Tong
recommendation of the respective               • To give PIs more flexibility to offer
                                                                                                  • Wireless Communications — Prof
Faculty/School Research Committees,               the most appropriate salary level for             Tsang Leung
approved funding of $19.8M to support             Research Assistants, amend the                  • Establishment of the Centre for
85 projects.                                      required academic qualification to                Marine Environmental Research and
                                                  “A relevant diploma or degree, or                 Innovative Technology (MERIT) —
Research Policy Guidelines                        equivalent professional                           Prof Rudolf Wu
The Committee appointed a Working                 qualifications” and no longer specify           • Socio-Technical Action Research
Group to review existing policies and             a good classification as the criteria             and Theorizing on Electronic
                                                  for appointment at a higher salary                Business in Hong Kong (START e-
guidelines governing funding support
                                                  level.                                            BIZ) — Prof Douglas Vogel
for research in anticipation of budgetary
constraints and to ensure effective            • To attract local recruits with high              The four projects represent areas in
monitoring. Decisions were made on a              academic qualifications, remove the             which CityU has developed a critical
number of items following lengthy                 distinction for Senior Research                 mass of research expertise. The
discussions on the criteria for internal          Assistants/Associates between local             projects involve collaboration with
research grants, the funding ceiling and          recruits and those from the                     both local and overseas institutions.
allocation across Faculties, and the              Mainland (currently, local recruits             UGC will short-list the proposals by
strengthening of existing monitoring              can not be offered the Associate title)         February 2003. Review panels will
mechanisms to ensure timely                       and amend the academic                          then assess these proposals and
completion of projects. Decisions will            requirement to “A master’s degree               conduct interviews and site visits.
be disseminated to the relevant parties                                                           UGC will announce funding results in
                                                  plus one year’s experience, or a
involved.                                                                                         early 2004.

                         Upcoming Events and Application Deadlines
  Date/Deadline            Event/Activity                                                                             Responsible Party
  13 May–8 June            Application for conference grants (2nd round 2002)                                               SGS
  14 June                  Germany/Hong Kong Joint Research Scheme                                                          RO
  29 June                  Deadline for submission of theses for examination for MPhil/PhD students who                     SGS
                           wish to graduate and participate in the 2002 Congregation
  Late June                Occupational Safety & Health Council Research Grant                                              RO
  10–14 July               8th International Conference on Language and Social Psychology                                    SS
  29 August–               International Conference on Nonlinear Partial Differential Equations                            RCMS
  2 September
                                                                                                                                           Graduate Studies and Research Newsletter

  2–30 September           Application for conference grants (3rd round 2002)                                               SGS
  9 September–             Application for research tuition scholarships (3 round 2002)                                     SGS
  5 October
  Late September           Japan World Exposition Commemorative Fund 2001 Grant                                             RO

                                            External Grants/Awards
Funding Body               Project Title                                                          PI                          Amount
Social Welfare             Evaluation of “Ending Exclusion” Project                               Prof Kwok LEUNG             $285,000
Department                                                                                        (MGT)
General Motors             Superhard Nano-composite Ti-Si-N Coatings by                           Prof Yiu-wing MAI           $60,000
China Inc                  Reactive Magnetron Sputtering for Automotive Applications              (MEEM)

June 2002
            Applied R & D

            CityU and HK Science                                       New ITF Application Forms and Guides
            and Technology Parks
                                                               At a briefing session at CityU in April,                                             project funds does not form part of the
            Collaboration                                      Mr Brian Lo, Assistant Commissioner                                                  budget, and all interest must be returned
                                                               (Funding Schemes) for the Innovation                                                 to the Government when the project is
            To further enhance its networks with               and Technology Commission (ITC),                                                     completed.
            local business, science and                        outlined recent changes in the                                                       ITC has increased the flexibility
            technology communities, CityU is                   Innovation and Technology Fund (ITF).                                                university-based investigators have in
            developing links with the Hong Kong                ITC has introduced new application                                                   using project funds under ITSP. Over
            Science and Technology Parks                       forms, designed to be better organised,                                              the life of the project, up to 30 percent
            Corporation (HKSTP). Current                       simpler, and generally more user                                                     (cumulative) of the total budget can be
            initiatives include:                               friendly. ITC has also revised the ITF                                               moved into or out of the budget
                                                               guide, with a separate booklet for each                                              categories of staffing, equipment and
            Mentorship programme                               ITF programme and supplementary                                                      other direct costs, without prior
                                                               notes covering information specifically                                              approval from ITC. ITC has set certain
            CityU colleagues will act as mentors               for universities.                                                                    restrictions, and prior approval is still
            to provide business and technical                  The new booklet for the Innovation and                                               necessary for some items. Full details
            advice to participants of HKSTP’s                  Technology Support Programme (ITSP),                                                 are given in the ITSP guide.
            Business Incubation Programme.                     one of the four ITF programmes,
            Mentees can benefit from insights                  includes changes for
            from those who have been successful
                                                               • commercialisation, and
            in launching new ventures or who
            possess relevant knowledge in                      • use of ITF project funds.
            technology or management. Mentors                  ITSP applicants are now required to give
            c a n b e n e f i t f r o m s y n e rg i s t i c   a broad indication of the commercial
            interaction with entrepreneurs.                    potential of their proposed project or
                                                               provide a business plan in their
            Consultancy services                               application. The potential for
                                                               commercialisation will be taken into
            CityU’s key resource is the expertise              account when projects are considered
            of its staff. CityU will provide                   for funding. For funded projects, a
            consultancy services to members of                 detailed plan for commercialising
            the incubation programme. This                     project outcomes will have to be given
            consultancy will be financed by an                 in the penultimate progress report.
            HKSTP technical assistance fund.                   ITF project funds comprise ITF grants,
                                                               sponsorship and any funding from other                                                       The ITSP Guide is available from IBDO
            CUBIC                                              sources. The interest accrued on ITF                                                         or at the ITF website:

            Incubation programme members will                  ○   ○   ○   ○   ○    ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○    ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○   ○

            also be welcome to join the CityU
            Business and Industrial Club, CUBIC.
            Membership offers a host of benefits,
                                                                           Innovation and Technology Fund (ITF)
            such as access to CityU library
            resources and invitations to seminars
                                                                              List of Approved Projects from
            and public lectures.                                              December 2001 to March 2002
            HKSTP is a government statutory
            body that aims to bring together                   Project Dept                     Project Title                                                               Programme Funding Amount
            world-class technology and highly                  Co-                                                                                                                    (incl. industrial
            skilled workers to facilitate interaction          ordinator                                                                                                              sponsorship)
                                                               Prof Y C EE              Reliability Study and Failure Analysis                                              UIM-TCS   $375,000
            and innovation on both a local and a
                                                               CHAN                     of Two Metal Layer Flexible Substrate
            global basis. The parks are designed
                                                                                        (with Micro-via) in Modern IC Packaging
            to house companies of all sizes in
                                                               Dr Peter            MEEM Smart Electronic Ear for Printing Machinery ITS                                                             $4,534,000
            various stages of development.                     TSE                      Fault Diagnosis and Intelligent Colour
                                                                                        Printing Quality Enhancement System
            CityU’s collaboration will be co-
            ordinated by the Industrial and                    Number of ongoing ITF projects as at 1 April 2002 : 21
            Business Development Office. Please                ITS                 Innovation and Technology Support Programme
            contact IBDO for more information.                 UIM-TCS             University-Industry Collaboration Programme-Teaching Company Scheme

                                                                                                                Career Development

                    Careers Seminar for Research Degree Students:
                   Preparation and Development for the Way Ahead

I  s my research degree an asset for
   employment? Is an academic career
my only option? What are employers
                                               it to someone else and you’ve got to be
                                               able to understand others.”
                                                                                           Harnessing the Power of a PhD
                                                                                           for a Successful Career
                                               Dr Mak reminded students that a
looking for? Can my research findings                                                      Prof Kwaku Atuahene-Gima, Professor
                                               research degree is not the end of their
become business initiatives? These                                                         in CityU’s Management Department,
                                               learning: “Having got your degree does
issues and many more were addressed                                                        looked specifically at academic careers
                                               not give you the privilege to stop
at a careers seminar at CityU on 7                                                         in his talk. He said you need to plan
                                               learning. Doing research is just
March that was attended by over 120                                                                                   your degree
                                               the beginning.”
research degree students.                                                                                             process with
                                                                                                                      your career
Prof P S Chung, Dean of the School of          Vision beyond Boundaries                                               in mind,
Graduate Studies and Vice-President/           —From Academic                                                         understand
Research, opened the careers seminar,
                                               Research to Business                                                   how best to
which was jointly organised by the
                                                                                                                      harness the
School of Graduate Studies and the             Dr C K Chan, founder and CEO
Student Development Services. Prof             of TeleEye Group and former
                                                                                                                      of the degree
Chung said that although Hong Kong is          CityU professor, shared his experience
                                                                                           process, and, once in your career,
facing an economic downturn, “people           of transferring a research invention into
                                                                                           understand how best to optimise your
with a higher qualification always have        a commercial product. The TeleEye
                                                                                           career success.
a better chance of getting a job.” He          company is involved in high-tech signal
encouraged students to make use of             processing technology, an area Dr Chan      Prof Atuahene-Gima said you need to
their time during their degree to prepare      and his colleagues have been                know “the potential significance of the
for entering the workforce.                    researching for over 15 years. They used    contribution from your research in
                                               their research to develop products for a    advance.” You also need to know the
Three invited speakers gave short talks
                                               global market. In                                         predictors of future
to help research students consider
                                               2001 the company                                          success. “The first thing is
different career paths.
                                               was listed on the                                         you have to hit the
                                               Growth Enterprise                                         ground running and
Other Careers
                                               Market of the Hong                                        differentiate yourself from
Dr Kim Mak, Executive Director
                                               Kong Stock                                                your cohort by publishing
(Corporate Development), The Hong
                                               Exchange. Dr Chan                                         in the top journals.” You
Kong Jockey Club, looked at careers
                                               said developing                                           need to base your career
beyond those traditionally associated
                                               their business skills                                     and confidence on the
with research degree graduates. He said
                                               has been a challenge: “As the researcher    strength of your own research rather
a research degree can help you get a
                                               you have to learn a lot about business      than the reputation of your supervisor
first job, it can help you progress to
                                               in order to do better, and it’s all very    or your school. You should be able to
certain levels, and that employers will
                                               hard work and takes a lot of                work collaboratively but also display
give it due credit if the job is relevant to
                                               commitment.”                                independent scholarly work. And
the research area.
                                                                                           although the current maxim in research
To Dr Mak, it is not the name of the           “Whether the high-tech product is
                                                                                           is “publish, publish, publish”, Prof
qualification that is important, but rather    good or not really depends on the
                                                                                           Atuahene-Gima stressed that the quality
the qualities you can                          application.” Dr Chan cited examples
                                                                                           of your publications is more important
acquire through the                                            where a superior
                                                                                           than the quantity.
experience of leading-                                         product does not
                                                                                                                                             Graduate Studies and Research Newsletter

                                                               necessarily lead to         After the three talks, CityU PhD
edge research,
                                                               business success, such      graduate Dr Ron Kwok gave a five-
including original and
                                                               as the dominance of         minute video presentation in which he
independent thinking,
                                                               Microsoft Windows           reflected on the aspects of his research
the ability to make
                                                               over the Apple              degree that have helped him in his
critical observations,
                                                               Mackintosh operating        subsequent career. (Dr Kwok’s insights
confidence, and the
                                                               system. “The business       are given in the Graduate Studies
ability to find
                                               system is more important than the           Forum on page 8.)
uncharted paths. Dr Mak advised
research students to maintain a broad          product it carries.”                        Students and guests then split into focus
outlook and common sense. He                   Dr Chan summarised the formula for          groups to discuss different career
emphasised the importance of                   success in transferring research to         opportunities.
communication: “No matter how good             business as “good research, good                                     — Vicki Geall
you are, you’ve got to be able to explain      products, together with a good business     A more detailed account of the careers seminar
                                               system.”                                    can be found at

June 2002
            Career Development

                                Graduate Studies Forum on Career Development

            T   he School of Graduate Studies
                invited two research degree
            graduates and their supervisors to
                                                          Prof Luk advised students to make the
                                                          most of the opportunity to develop as
                                                          an independent thinker, reflecting the
                                                                                                      Communication skills
                                                                                                      Being able to communicate ideas is
            discuss how students can help their           very nature of a research degree.           beneficial in many areas of work. To
            career development during their               Graduates of undergraduate                  communicate methodologies, findings
            research degree studies and how               programmes are expected to have             and arguments, students need to
            supervisors can support this                  developed as independent learners;          develop oral presentation and writing
            development.                                  research degree graduates need to go        skills. These skills can be developed
                                                          beyond this and be independent              during research degree study through
            Dr Ron Kwok received                                           knowledge creators.        seminar and conference presentations
            his PhD in 1999 from                                                                      and journal publications. Supervisors
            the Information Systems                                         Dr Shum said the          can encourage students to go to
            Department. His                                                 most important            international conferences where
            supervisor was Dr Jian                                          aspect of his research    students can attend presentations and
            Ma (Associate Professor,                                        degree for his career     present their own work. Internal
            IS). Dr Kwok is now an                                          development was the       seminars give students the chance to
            assistant professor at                                          opportunity to learn      discuss their ideas and receive input in
            Binghamton University,                                          different research        a familiar setting.
            New York.                From left: Dr Ron Kwok, Dr Jian Ma     methodologies.
                                                                            Knowledge changes         Publishing journal articles before
            Dr Tim Shum, a PhD graduate from the         so quickly that graduates need to be         graduation is often not a formal
            Department of Electronic Engineering,        able to identify and interpret significant   requirement of research degree study,
            graduated in 1996 and his supervisor         new research.                                but it is an important way to develop
            was Prof K M Luk (Chair Professor, EE).                                                   written communication skills and to
                                                         Prof Luk also encouraged students to
                                                                                                      begin to build up a research profile,
                                                         learn how to do research in a systematic
                                                         way. Once developed, this approach           which is important for an academic
                                                         can be used in many different aspects        career. Projects or coursework in the
                                                         of work.                                     first few years of a research degree can
                                                                                                      be a good basis for publications.
                                                          Collaborative working skills                To communicate effectively, students
                                                          The graduates and their supervisors         should enhance relevant language
                                                          highlighted the need to develop             skills. In international settings this
             From left: Dr Tim Shum, Prof K M Luk                                                     means having good written and oral
                                                          collaborative skills such as teamwork
                                                          and networking skills. Teamworking          English skills. In local business and
            Dr Shum has worked in several local           skills are essential in most employment     industry, Putonghua is increasingly
            start-up companies since he graduated,        areas, and can be developed through         important. Ways of enhancing language
            and he is currently co-founder and            working alongside students, supervisors     skills include taking courses, working
            consultant of Art2Real.                       and other researchers.                      alongside native speakers, and
                                                                                                      practicing skills through presentations
            The fundamentals                              Students can also develop their             and writing.
                                                          networking skills — the ability to
            For research study to aid career              interact with new people and form links     General advice
            development, said Dr Kwok, you must           based on common interests. This may
            first successfully complete your research     include forming a research network for      In summing up, Dr Ma advised students
            degree. Students need to choose the           students planning an academic career,       to “make use of your own strengths.”
            right topic and supervisor, work hard,        or more generally developing these          “Make the most of your time during the
            and sustain their focus, motivation and       skills to use in new settings such as in    first year or two of your degree,” urged
            interest.                                     industry. Introductions by supervisors      Dr Kwok.
                                                          and local and international conferences
            Dr Ma emphasised that it is important                                                     Prof Luk encouraged students to
                                                          provide good networking opportunities.
            for students to choose the right topic,                                                   “diversify your research interests” and
                                                          Inviting visiting professors to the
            and both Dr Ma and Prof Luk said the                                                      to read outside their thesis topic. Dr
                                                          department gives students opportunities
            supervisor plays an important role in                                                     Shum advised students to “be proactive
                                                          to mix with leaders in their field and to
            introducing students to pertinent topics                                                  in research and communication.”
                                                          find out about latest developments. All
            in the field.
                                                          of these interactions can help students                              — Vicki Geall
                                                          develop interpersonal skills.

                                                                                                                         Career Development

                     Research Student Survey
                                                                                                      Showcase of
I n a recent survey, CityU research degree students and graduates say their degree
   enhances their intellectual development, the generic skills they develop are useful
in employment, and additional training in communication, interpersonal and
                                                                                                      Postgraduate Work
management skills would be beneficial.                                                                Postgraduate students invest much
The survey, carried out at the beginning of 2002 by CityU’s Quality Evaluation                        time and effort in producing high
Centre for the School of Graduate Studies, focused on two key areas: students’                        quality, innovative work. In May
career development and their experience of CityU’s research environment.
                                                                                                      2002, the School of Graduate Studies
Intellectual development                                                                              (SGS) set up a showcase of CityU
Generally, both graduates and current students say their research degree enhanced                     postgraduate students’ work to
or is enhancing their intellectual development (92% of graduates and 78% of
students). In particular, high percentages of respondents say their degree has helped                 recognise students’ efforts and
or is helping them develop analytical skills, enrich their knowledge and think                        achievements and to provide a forum
independently.                                                                                        for peer exchange.
Lower percentages of respondents agree that taught courses have broadened their
views (42%/45%) or that such courses have provided in-depth training (28%/31%).                       The work will be displayed outside
                                                                                                      the SGS office, room 5230, on the fifth
Career development
Most graduates (78%) say skills such as critical and independent thinking gained                      floor of Cheng Yick-chi Building. Each
through their research degree are useful to their present employment, with 60% of                     selection of work will be displayed
the 20 current students in
                                                                                                      for two months. For each two-month
employment giving this                           career education        students
response.                                                                graduates                    period, two departments or schools
                                                           leadership skills
                                                                                                      will be invited to submit a sample of
Management skills,                                                   management skills
interpersonal relationships                                                                           their postgraduate students’ work for
and communication are                                                                                 display.
areas in which respondents                                               communication skills

say training would be useful                                   interpersonal relationships
during a research degree.
                                  0          20          40            60           80          100
Nearly one half of current        Percent of respondents who say training in each area during
students also suggest             research degree study would be helpful for career development
training in teaching.

Several graduates commented that ongoing education and extra training in other
skills are necessary for their career development. Since completing their research
degree, over a quarter (27%) have gained professional qualifications, and two-fifths
(42%) have pursued further studies.
                                                                                                      Research work from students of the
Research support                                                                                      Department of Physics and Materials Science
High percentages of respondents rate library services (95%/93%), academic                             currently on display outside the SGS office.
supervision from their supervisor (87%/88%), computer services (87%/79%),
                                                                                                                                                     Graduate Studies and Research Newsletter

overseas conferences, workshops and seminars (77%/74%), and financial assistance
(82%/76%) as important or very important for facilitating research study. Most                        SGS hope that this showcase of
graduates (78%) also see local conferences, workshops and seminars as important.                      students’ work will provide an
Over one half (56%) of current students share and exchange ideas on research                          additional channel for academic
theories and methods with other research students and academic staff (with 32%                        exchange within CityU and will also
expressing no opinion). Two-fifths (40%) say conferences and forums organised by
SGS and the University offer opportunities for this type of sharing, and 27% agree                    encourage students in their pursuit of
that organised social activities and gatherings provide such opportunities.                           academic excellence.

Responses from 111 current students and 77 graduates were obtained in the survey, representing
                                                                                                      Please contact SGS if you have any
response rates of 17% and 18%, respectively. The questionnaire was based on issues raised
in focus groups prior to the survey. For more information, please contact SGS.                        enquiries.

June 2002
            CUPA News

             The Third Hong Kong                                                CUPA ExCo’s New Face
             Joint University                          Hello from the new Executive Committee of the CityU Postgraduate Association. As
                                                       you can see from the list below, we come from a range of CityU departments. We
             Postgraduate Forum                        will do our utmost to organise suitable activities for all different members to aid
                                                       interaction and personal development. This year we aim to enlarge CUPA’s
                                                       communication network by enhancing our connections both within CityU and
             The CityU Postgraduate Association        externally, such as with the Students’ Union, other CityU internal departments, and
             (CUPA) hosted the Third Hong Kong         external professional organisations.
             Joint University Postgraduate Forum       We rely on your support and participation and look forward to seeing you at our
                                                       coming activities.
             at CityU on 2 March 2002. Prof P S
             Chung, Vice President/Research,                                                                            2002–2003 CUPA ExCo
             gave an opening speech at the forum,
                                                                    Position                            Name                       Department
             and CityU alumna Ms Christine Loh
             facilitated the discussions. CUPA                     President                     Yu Shek Hang, Keith                   BCH

             invited various well-known                          Vice-President                  So Yuk Hing, Valerie                  IS

             professors who have made                          General Secretary I             Yuen Man Ching, Connie                  IT
             significant contributions to Hong                General Secretary II               Ma Wai Man, Eden                      EE
             Kong’s education system to attend                      Treasurer                   Siu Yee Ming, Stanley                  BCH
             the forum and to discuss education
                                                           Internal Programme Leader               Yuan Xiao Ming                      MA
             problems in Hong Kong.            The
                                                            Immediate Past President             Lee Wai Leng, Ricky                   EE
             attending professors included Prof
             Ruth Hayhoe (HKIEd), Prof George
             McLaughlin (CUHK), Prof Richard
                                                                                   2001–2002 SGS Cup
                                                       CUPA always encourages postgraduates to make more friends from different
                                                       disciplines to expand their network, and also to maintain and enhance their physical
                                                       well-being alongside their research and study. For these reasons, CUPA holds the
                                                       SGS Cup every year. The 2001–2002 SGS Cup was very successful, and all
                                                       participants enjoyed themselves and made new friends during the competitions.
                                                       This year’s Cup comprised three thrilling tournaments: 3-on-3 basketball, badminton
                                                       and table tennis. The results are listed below:

                                                       3-on-3 Basketball (16 February 2002)
                                                       Champion                      (EE)                       So Kwok Kan, Lai Hau Wah, Fung
                                                                                                                Leung Ching, Chan Kwok Hung &
             Yan-Ki Ho (CityU) and Dr Kwok-                                                                     Wan Ka Lok
             Wah Cheung (HKU). We thank all            1st Runner-up                 !"#$% (BCH)                Siu Yee Ming, Siu Ho Lim, Ching

             fellow students, the School of                                                                     Wai Keung & Liu Wen Hua

             Graduate Studies, the Student
             Development Services, and the
                                                                            Badminton (23 March 2002)           Table Tennis (24 March 2002)
             Alumni Affairs and Development            Men’s Singles        Han Liang (MEEM)                    Yiu Tak Yeung, Douglas (BCH)
             Office for their support of this forum.   Women’s Singles      Wong Xue Dan (SLW)                  Ge Lan (MKT)
                                                       Men’s Doubles        Lai Wai (EE) & Deng Hua (MEEM)      Ching Wai Keung (BCH) &
             A VCD of this forum is now on sale.                                                                Liu Wen Hua (BCH)
             Please contact the CUPA office for        Women’s Doubles      Eva Mak (BCH) & Kylie Mak (BCH)     Sham Xiao Yu (BCH) &

             further information — phone: 2788-                                                                 Liu Wei Wei (SS)
                                                       Mixed Doubles        Lai Wai (EE) & Sham Xiao Yu (BCH)   Ge Lan (MKT) & Han Liang (MEEM)
             9136 or email: a-cupa@student.
                                The SGS Cup prize-giving ceremony was held on 27 March. CUPA would like to
                                                       thank all athletes for their participation and congratulate all winners. We also give
                 CityU Postgraduate Association        our sincere appreciation to our volunteers and helpers for their effort in making the
                                                       2001–2002 SGS Cup a great success. See you all next year!

                                                                          – 10 –

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