Excellent faculty lead CityU into world’s top 10 young universities

Helen Mok

Share this article 

Campus photo


City University of Hong Kong (CityU) is ranked 7th among the world's top young universities according to the Nature Index 2021 Young Universities, issued by the leading academic publisher Springer Nature.

The results of the index reaffirm that CityU's strengths are recognised internationally.

CityU advocates “the separation of politics from education" and “the integration of research and teaching", as well as the promotion of a diverse teaching and research environment. In an exclusive interview with Nature, President Way Kuo of CityU discussed the challenges that a young university faces when trying to hire scholars from around the world.

President_Nature Index

“We’re different to more established institutions and so we must be proactive and persistent. That’s why I call people and keep in touch,” he said, adding that the recruitment process can take several years to complete.

By way of example, Professor Kuo mentioned the story behind engaging Professor Nikolaus Osterrieder, former Professor of Virology and Chair at Freie Universität Berlin. He is one of the many world-class scholars to have been recruited through CityU’s customised recruitment exercise.

Although he was approached by Professor Kuo as far back as 2013, Professor Osterrieder didn’t join CityU until 2020. He accepted an offer in 2014 but he had to decline it following an accident. However, Professor Kuo was not discouraged and kept in touch with Professor Osterrieder, who eventually joined CityU as Dean of the Jockey Club College of Veterinary Medicine and Life Sciences and Chair Professor of Virology and One Health.

“Recruiting world-class scholars is never easy for a young university. The key is patience and persistence,” added President Kuo.

Also cited by President Kuo in the Nature interview was Professor Wang Zuankai, another CityU scholar recruited from a top overseas university, this time from the US. Joining as Assistant Professor in 2009 and now Chair Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Professor Wang said he was attracted by CityU’s support for career development.

“CityU really helps young faculty members build their careers,” he said. Since 2009, Professor Wang and his research team have made a number of breakthroughs in water energy harvesting and nature-inspired engineering, both of which can profoundly impact problems related to global energy issues.

As one of the fastest growing universities in the world over the past decade, CityU is recognised as a hub for innovation in research and professional education, with a vision to develop into a world-class university. It is committed to recruiting professors at all levels through a global strategy, with world-class faculty and research teams from over 35 countries and regions around the world.

First published in November 2014, the Nature Index Young Universities ranks universities under 50 years of age based on their faculty members’ article count and share in 82 of the most influential academic journals in natural sciences over the past year. Journals include the Nature series, Science and Cell.

The ranking has developed into an internationally recognised and highly influential indicator of high-quality research output and collaboration in the field of natural sciences by institutions, countries and regions.


Contact Information

Communications and Public Relations Office

Back to top