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Catalysing Research and Innovation in Hong Kong

Image Credits: CUHK, Press Release
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The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has received a donation of HK$49.7 million from The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust (the Trust). This contribution aims to establish five cutting-edge Jockey Club (JC) STEM Labs at the university. An inauguration ceremony was held and was attended by the Vice-Chancellor and President of CUHK; the Provost of CUHK; and the Head of Charities (Talent & Sector Development) at The Hong Kong Jockey Club.

During the event, the Vice-Chancellor and President of CUHK expressed deep gratitude to the Trust in his welcome speech. He emphasised the alignment of CUHK’s strategic plan with the establishment of the JC STEM Labs, underscoring the university’s commitment to enhancing research capabilities and fostering a robust Team CUHK.

He stated that the establishment of the five JC STEM Labs is recognised as a noteworthy milestone in their collective pursuit of goals. Each laboratory concentrates on a distinct research domain and is poised to produce influential findings and pioneering results.

These endeavours are anticipated not only to enhance Hong Kong’s competitiveness over the long term but also to serve as global breakthroughs, ultimately providing heightened social benefits for the broader community.

The Provost of CUHK introduced the five newly inaugurated JC STEM Labs and their respective Directors.

  1. JC STEM Lab of Intelligent Design Automation
    1. Director: Professor Ho Tsung Yi
    2. Department: Computer Science and Engineering
  • Objective: This lab, led by Professor Ho Tsung Yi, is at the forefront of electronic design automation. The goal is to position CUHK as a leading centre for next-generation technologies, particularly in the realm of intelligent design automation.
  1. JC STEM Lab of Astronomical Instrumentation
    1. Director: Professor Yan Renbin
    2. Department: Physics
  • Objective: This lab specialises in Astronomical Instrumentation. The primary focus is on researching the motion and distribution of gases in the Milky Way. This research aims to shed light on humankind’s galactic home and deepen our understanding of the birth of stars.
  1. JC STEM Lab of Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine
    1. Director: Professor Stephen Dalton
    2. Department: Biomedical Sciences
  • Objective: Professor Stephen Dalton leads this lab, which concentrates on the development of new drugs and innovative cell therapy approaches. The specific focus is on addressing the challenges posed by type-2 diabetes, aiming to advance medical solutions and alleviate the impact on patients.
  1. JC STEM Lab of Nature-inspired Precision Medical Engineering
    1. Director: Professor Mao Chuanbin
    2. Department: Biomedical Engineering
  • Objective: Headed by Professor Mao Chuanbin, this lab explores Nature-inspired Precision Medical Engineering. The objective is to leverage insights from nature and transform these tools into precision medicine. The overarching goal is to combat challenging diseases, with a particular emphasis on addressing issues related to cancer.
  1. JC STEM Lab of Personalised Cancer Medicine
    1. Director: Professor Andreas Moeller
    2. Department: Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery
  • Objective: Professor Andreas Moeller leads this lab, which is dedicated to advancing Personalised Cancer Medicine. The lab is poised to deliver impactful outcomes in translational cancer research. The focus is on tailoring medical approaches to individual patients, aiming for more effective and personalised treatment strategies.

A representative from the Trust expressed confidence in the far-reaching impact of these labs. She highlighted their potential to extend beyond the confines of the university, equipping local talents, fostering collaboration with industries, and contributing to the overall development of innovation and technology for society. The Club’s commitment to the initiative as part of its integrated business model, with revenue returned to the community through tax payments and charitable donations was emphasised.

The Trust has allocated a substantial amount of HK$500 million for the JC STEM Lab initiative, positioning it as a central component of the Trust’s talent and sector development strategy. The initiative aims to support the laboratory setup at University Grants Committee-funded universities for the scholars awarded under the Government-initiated Global STEM Professorship Scheme. This strategic investment is geared towards nurturing STEM talent in Hong Kong and promoting the translation of new science and technology into social impact.

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