THEi received research grant awards totalling HK$23 million from the Research Grants Council
THEi received 14 research grant awards totalling $23.5 million in this year’s funding exercise for the Competitive Research Funding Schemes for the Local Self-Financing Degree Sector of the Research Grants Council (RGC).
There are three schemes: the Institutional Development Scheme (IDS) for institute-wide development, the Inter-institutional Development Scheme (IIDS) for conference organisation, and the Faculty Development Scheme (FDS) for projects by individual academics. They are funded by the Hong Kong Government to support research activities in the local self-financing degree sector. Over 200 applicants from 13 institutions competed in this year’s exercise. All the applications were rigorously reviewed by local and overseas experts, and the awards were granted on the basis of merit. On 31 August 2016, the RGC announced the results, in which THEi received one IDS award, one IIDS award, and 12 FDS awards, together making up the highest amount of total award obtained.
Rapid depletion of natural resources and decline in the quality of our living environment are pressing global issues. In response, THEi has adopted “Sustainable Living” as our five-year strategic research theme to formulate solutions to improving the environment. Hence, a significant portion of this year’s IDS award to THEi of $14 million will be used to boost the Institute’s capacity in conducting research on sustainable innovation and living by setting up a Centre for Sustainable Design & Environment. This will be equipped with cutting-edge equipment and be led by our research experts from the Faculty of Design and Environment.
This IDS award comes a year after THEi was awarded IDS funding for a Research Centre for Waste and Resource Management in the Faculty of Science and Technology. Together, these two research centres will produce findings that will help to promote sustainable living. Along the same theme, this year’s IIDS award to THEi will be used to organise a series of seminars on topics like biodiversity, planting and landscape design scheduled to be held next year. The seminars will be open to students, academics, practitioners as well as the general public.
Once again, THEi researchers shone at the FDS competition. About a fourth of all the supported FDS proposals, totalling $9 million, came from THEi. Our FDS awardees came from diverse disciplines, including design, horticulture, biology & medicine, engineering, language and sociology. The awards will enable these academics to carry out high quality research in their specialty areas in the coming three years.