Honouring Excellence in applied research

Michael Woloschuk

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An audience of more than 120 turned up on 19 September to honour the winners of CityU's Third Applied Research Excellence Awards, organized by the Industrial and Business Development Office.

"As you know, the awards were designed to recognize and celebrate our talented academics for their outstanding work in applied research," said
Professor P S Chung, Vice-President (Research), in his opening remarks. "But that is not all. Perhaps more importantly, the awards are given to those research teams who made particularly valuable contributions to the Hong Kong community at large." 

Grand prize this year went to Professor Ron Hui, Dr Henry Chung and Dr Wei Yan of the Department of Electronic Engineering for their major technological breakthrough in producing the world's first two-wired dimmable electronic ballast. The dimmable electronic ballast is an energy-saving product that can be used in existing installations. Its dimming range is from 100% to less than 10% without flickers and dark rings. It offers huge energy savings and reliability. Equipment costs can easily be recovered from electricity bill savings within a year.

Guest of honour at the awards ceremony was Mr Francis Ho, JP, Commissioner for Innovation and Technology for the Government of Hong Kong. In his opening remarks, Mr Ho praised the University for the significant advances it has made in advocating applied research over the years.

"Two weeks ago the Chief Executive rang me up and asked me where all the 'idea' money had gone," said Mr Ho, referring to recent press reports that have criticized Hong Kong's tertiary institutions for "lacklustre" research work. "And the answer to the Chief Executive is that the proof is in the pudding. These awards demonstrate the effectiveness of Hong Kong funding. And I think these research projects say a lot about government commitment to technological advancement in Hong Kong."

CityU has run the Applied Research Excellence Awards Competition since 1995. The awards, which are handed out every two years, were held at the Multimedia Conference Room. This year, 11 applications in three categories were received: Business and Management; Technological Achievement; and Public and Social Services. The judging panel-comprising senior CityU staff and external members from a host of academic and private sectors-were impressed by the high quality of work submitted and six awards were recommended.
Other award winners included:

Professor Ferdinand Gul and Professor Judy Tsui from the Department of Accountancy, for their groundbreaking research paper on "Corporate Governance and Financial Transparencies in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China".


Professor L K Chan, Professor Y V Hui, Dr Alan Wan, Dr Y C Chan, DrH P Lo, Dr S K Tse and Dr Kelvin Yau, of the Department of Management Sciences, for their Centa-City Index: A Hong Kong Property Price Index.


Professor K M Luk, Professor C H Chan, Professor Edwin Pun, Professor Kenneth Mei, Professor Edward Yung, Professor Y L Chow, Dr K W Leung and Dr K F Tong, of the Department of Electronic Engineering, for their development of base station antennas for mobile communications.    

Mr Caesar Lun of the Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics, for his project titled: Computational Linguistic Applications, Sociolinguistics Applications, and Computer-assisted Language Learning.



Dr Lo Tit Wing, Department of Applied Social Studies, for a study on Youth Services and Youth Policy in Hong Kong. 



In his closing remarks, President H K Chang said his heart was "filled with pride and joy" for the research teams.



"These colleagues worked hard, sweated, and achieved results," said Professor Chang.



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