Aug 02 2013 | Posted by SSBibek

Where East meets West: CUHK strengthens ties with academic mobility

The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) runs a number of research mobility programmes to facilitate research collaborations and partnership building. These programmes provide a platform for researchers in various stages of their career to identify and build research ties with researchers from leading universities around the world, including members of the Worldwide Universities Network (WUN). Research students enrich their learning experience and faculty members engage in academic activities relevant to their research interest and meet with scholars and researchers to explore collaboration in their field of expertise. During 2012-13, a total of 12 faculty members and PhD students from CUHK were selected to participate in these programmes and undertook visits to WUN universities. Participants were able to work with some of the best research universities in the world, including the Pennsylvania State University, University of Auckland, University of Bristol, University of Leeds, and the University of Sydney. Concurrently, there were four faculty members and PhD students from the University of Bristol and University of Leeds who came to CUHK under the same programmes.

One of the participants was Prof. Janny Leung of the Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management who went to the University of Leeds (Leeds) for a week in April 2013. While at Leeds, Prof. Leung participated in a one-day workshop organized by the Institute for Transport Studies (ITS) where academics and practitioners from different disciplines explored the topic of “The Art and Science of Individual and Governmental Decision-Making”. She also met with a number of researchers at ITS and the School of Process, Environmental and Materials Engineering (SPEME) to exchange views and explore collaboration opportunities. Prof. Leung said, “These meetings enabled me to gain a much broader perspective on transport research. Besides, I learned much [from SPEME] that would be helpful for the newly developed Energy Engineering programme at CUHK”.

Since Prof. Leung’s visit, Prof. Oliver Carsten of ITS has returned a visit to CUHK and gave a seminar to the students and faculty of the Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management. He also met with Prof. Leung and her colleagues to continue the dialogue on academic and research collaborations.

Another participant was Ms. Mun-yu Tang, PhD student of the Department of Social Work, who undertook a 3-month research attachment under Prof. David Gordon of the Centre for the Study of Poverty and Social Justice at the University of Bristol (Bristol) in September 2012. Her research topic was on child poverty alleviation policies and programmes. Ms. Tang said, “My visit was very fruitful—I attended some training courses and research-related meetings and made a presentation at a conference. In addition, I collaborated with other PhD students to prepare two conference papers, and with the guidance of Prof. Gordon and my home thesis supervisor, I was able to write several papers which will be submitted to journals for review soon. Prof. Gordon has taken a great part in my development since my return to Hong Kong. He offers ongoing advice concerning child poverty on policy, theoretical and methodological levels, which encourages me in the journey of working with the poor against poverty”. The visit has helped to solidify existing research ties between Bristol’s Prof. David Gordon and CUHK’s Prof. Wong Hung who have been working on a HK Government funded project worth HK$3.2 million on “Trends and Implications of Poverty and Social Disadvantages in Hong Kong: A Multi-disciplinary and Longitudinal Study”.

Ms. Tang (left) and Ms. Di Qi, one of Prof. Gordon’s students, outside the School of Policy Studies at the University of Bristol

Ms. Tang (left) and Ms. Di Qi, one of Prof. David Gordon’s students, outside the School of Policy Studies at the University of Bristol

To learn more about the research mobility programmes at CUHK, please refer to the Office of Academic Links website. The University makes an annual call for applications and the next call (for 2014-15) will be announced in early January 2014.