Faculty of Science, The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) - Dean's Remarks

Dean's Remarks

Welcome to the Faculty of Science Research Day 2022 at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. Every year, the Faculty organises a Research Day where researchers gather to share ideas and experiences in advancing research and collaboration in the Faculty and CUHK. After the soaring fifth wave of COVID-19 pandemic in Hong Kong around Spring 2022, to curb the spread of this pandemic, the Faculty Research Day this year goes virtual again with the theme of “Collaborative and Impactful Research in Science”. Although we are not meeting physically in large group this time, we hope the Science Faculty Research Day still serves as a platform to exchange ideas from recent research advances and to encourage collaborative research across different disciplines.

The advantage of collaboration has been recognised widely in many areas, as indicated in a quote from Mother Teresa, “I can do things you cannot, you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.” Collaborative research has become more prevalent in science globally not only because science is a collaborative effort but also because addressing major scientific and societal challenges requires multi-disciplinary research and development. Therefore, researchers are increasingly required to work across disciplines to be more impactful. To align with the CUHK 2021-2025 Strategic Plan and the Faculty research strategy, we have identified seven strategic research areas with pronounced emphasis on inter- and multi-disciplinary research that crosses individual units' boundaries. These approaches are expected to promote multi-disciplinary research and unleash the tremendous potential of our researchers in collaborative research for meeting complex and convoluted challenges to generate more significant research impact.

For the Faculty Research Day this year, we are very pleased to have Prof. Ling QIN, Choh-Ming Li Professor of Orthopaedics and Traumatology from the CUHK Faculty of Medicine as the Keynote Speaker. Prof. QIN has demonstrated track records of highly successful and impactful collaborative research including his leadership to develop competitive research grants and lead multidisciplinary collaboration, including GRF, CRF, TRS and AoE. He will share his insights on his impactful translational research in multidisciplinary collaboration with scientists from diverse fields. Prof. QIN is also the Director of CUHK Hong Kong-Shenzhen Innovation and Technology Research Institute (Futian) (FITRI) in the Lok Ma Chau Loop. His sharing and insights on this aspect will also be very valuable for researchers in Faculty of Science. As a related effort, our faculty members in physics, chemistry and life sciences are involved in new collaborative efforts in developing the CUHK-Great Bay University Joint Institute of Advanced Materials and Green Energy Research (JIAMGER) in Dongguan, for which the MOU has been signed recently by both universities.

The Faculty has started a new seed grant for promoting collaborative research across the disciplinary boundaries in the Faculty, with the support of the CUHK “Project Impact Enhancement Fund (PIEF)” in 2020-2021, which is called the “Faculty of Science Collaborative Research Impact Matching Scheme (CRIMS)”. The scheme has been regularised since 2022-2023 with the Faculty budget, to continuously support interdisciplinary collaborative research leading to impactful advances in research with benefits to the society. In this connection, the Research Day this year features the sharing by five colleagues from the Faculty of Science representing collaborative research teams, including Prof. Man Nin CHAN in earth system science, Prof. Michael Kenneth CHAN in life sciences, Prof. Xinhui LU in physics, Prof. Yingying WEI in statistics, and Prof. Hongfeng YANG in earth system science. They will share the highlights of their latest collaborative research projects, supported by CRIMS 2020-2021.

As indicated in a quote from Henry Ford, “Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success.” Over the past ten years, the Faculty has successfully secured 22 Collaborative Research Fund (CRF) projects and 3 Area of Excellence (AoE) projects funded by the Research Grants Council (RGC). Riding on the excellent track record of collaborative research grants, the Faculty strives to promote and support collaborative research across disciplines. It is our hope that the Science Faculty Research Day 2022 will foster the Faculty’s initiatives to promote discussion towards collaborative research development between researchers in different disciplines and units and reinforce the multi-disciplinary and impactful collaboration in Science Faculty, CUHK and beyond.

I look forward to a stimulating Research Day with active participation and lively discussion.


Chunshan SONG
Dean of Science and
Wei Lun Professor of Chemistry