According to a recent press release, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU) held an agreement signing ceremony recently to further their collaboration in areas of space science and technology, marine science and technology, tourism management research as well as innovation and entrepreneurship.
The signing ceremony was held in the Zhuhai campus of Sun Yat-sen University. The PolyU President and the SYSU President signed the agreement on behalf of the two parties.
The PolyU President stated in his speech that PolyU has state-of-the-art technology in space technology. PolyU was recently funded by the Mainland’s China Academy of Space Technology to participate in the study of the debut landing region on the far side of the moon for spacecraft Chang’e-4.
This was covered earlier by an OpenGov Asia report, wherein it was noted that PolyU’s tech contributions to the lunar probe would include the design and development of an advanced Camera Pointing System, and an innovative lunar topographic mapping and geomorphological analysis technique in landing site characterisation for the spacecraft.
Chang’e-4 is the first lunar mission in the world to land on the far side of the Moon. The selection of a safe landing site with scientific value for Chang’e 4 is, therefore, one of the major tasks for the exploration.
It was also noted that the PolyU team has been working on the project since March 2016 and has amassed a large amount of lunar remote sensing data from multi-sources to create high-precision and high-resolution topographic models at the north-western South Pole – Aitken basin on the far side of the Moon, a potential landing region for the Chang’e-4.
The team then analysed in detail the terrain slopes, terrain occlusions to sun illumination and telecommunication, crater distribution, rock abundances, and geological history of the region. These analyses helped the team to put forward a sound and evidenced-based proposal of possible landing sites.
In his speech at the signing, the PolyU president also noted that the university has also designed and manufactured the “Camera Pointing System” for the nation’s lunar exploration projects.
He stated the two universities jointly organise a doctoral programme to nurture talents for the Greater Bay Area development. The recent establishment of the ‘Greater Bay Area Biotechnology and Translational Medicine International Collaboration’ marked another significant milestone in the close-tie cooperation between the two academic institutions.
The signing of the collaborative agreement this time will bolster support for the nation’s development strategy and meet the societal needs in the development of the Greater Bay Area.
On the same day, the PolyU delegation also participated in the inaugural ceremony of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Space Science and Technology Alliance and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Ocean Technology Innovation Alliance held at Sun Yat-sen University.
The forming of the Alliance is an important imitative for the universities in the three cities to harness the growing momentum of the nation’s development and provide a robust talent pool and strong technical support for the national strategic development in areas of space and ocean.
The Deputy Mayor of Zhuhai Municipal People’s Government also witnessed the signing ceremony.
At the Launch Ceremony of the national system of Policy Research Centre for Innovation and Technology (PReCIT)” as one of the PolyU’s 85th Anniversary celebratory events, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) hosted the “Forum on Integrating I&T into GBA. PReCIT is a University-level interdisciplinary policy research centre with the aspiration to be the leading I&T think tank in Hong Kong and the region.
Some 300 staff, students, alumni, leaders from I&T, finance, academia and guests gathered to exchange views on how Hong Kong can proactively integrate into the Nation’s development plan.
The Secretary for Innovation, Technology, and Industry, HKSAR Government stated that the new Policy Research Centre for Innovation and Technology will play a key role in facilitating interdisciplinary collaboration for more impactful research, in the I&T field.
PolyU’s President stated the establishment of PReCIT is just another timely step taken by the University to respond to key national strategies that unleash unlimited opportunities for Hong Kong’s future development.
The Vice President (Research and Innovation) and Director of PReCIT introduced the Centre’s background and three major research foci – carbon-neutral cities, the Greater Bay Area I&T development, and the Belt and Road Initiative development in Southeast Asia, with a view to dovetailing with the National 14th Five Year Plan in supporting Hong Kong to develop into an international I&T hub.
He stated that the respective strengths of Hong Kong and the mainland must complement each other in deliberation on cross‑boundary integration proposals which aim to foster R&D commercialisation to unleash the potentials of the GBA and Belt and Road economies as well as the opportunity associated with re‑industrialisation. To achieve this, a cross‑boundary policy on I&T cooperation including regarding the flows of I&T material, capital, data and people between Hong Kong and mainland provinces is needed. PReCIT, as the advocacy body of PolyU, endeavours to formulate strategies that support Hong Kong’s participation in the national pioneering technology missions.
The Co-Founder of the Greater Bay Area Association of Academicians; the President of the Hong Kong Academy of Engineering Sciences; the Chairman of the Federation of Hong Kong Industries; and the Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the Public Policy Institute, Our Hong Kong Foundation, were invited to share their insights, ahead of the announcement of the Hong Kong I&T Development Blueprint, in the panel discussion session moderated by
The Co-Founder of the Greater Bay Area Association of Academicians shared his experiences in cooperating with the innovation and technology sector on the mainland. He reiterated that it is important for the HKSAR government to work together with stakeholders, especially experts and the capital market, to advance I&T development.
The President of the Hong Kong Academy of Engineering Sciences called on the government to set an R&D policy direction that supports the Nation’s development. He also suggested Hong Kong and other cities in the GBA together establish an intellectual property exchange platform for university researchers to present their research outcomes and attract further funding.
Chairman of the Federation of Hong Kong Industries explained how Hong Kong serves as an industrial and I&T headquarters in connecting the GBA and ASEAN for research commercialisation and empowering advanced manufacturing, capitalising on the City’s strengths in the industry chain and as a financial centre.
The Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the Public Policy Institute, Our Hong Kong Foundation stressed that joint cross-border policy initiatives are needed to overcome barriers to deepening market access and facilitating movements of factors of production.
Finally, the Head of the Department of Applied Social Sciences and Co-Director of PReCIT concluded that concerted effort from all sectors of the community is essential to provide a sustainable and supportive environment for high-calibre and potential I&T talents to be persuaded to stay in Hong Kong.
The Australian National University (ANU) is hosting a new training centre aimed at upskilling the next generation of researchers in cutting-edge 3D imaging and analysis technology to help repair bones, safely store CO2, deactivate viruses on surfaces and recycle car parts among a range of critical applications.
The ARC Training Centre for Multiscale 3D Imaging, Modelling and Manufacturing, M3D Innovation, is using a “disruptive” digital imaging, analysis, modelling and manufacturing technology developed at ANU for more than 15 years.
The micro-imaging technology provides users with 3D “supervision” into a range of materials at scales ranging from metres to 10 nanometres – a measurement 1,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair.
The technology was originally developed by a team of researchers with M3D Innovation Director, Professor Mark Knackstedt, who has won a Eureka Prize as well as an ENI award – the ‘Nobel prize’ for energy resources research – for his innovation.
He noted that the aim is to gather researchers from ANU and Queensland University of Technology, 15 industry partners and end users to harness the ‘super-power’ of advanced imaging and analysis technologies. He added that a vibrant research training environment is being built and a workforce that is expert in applying the new technology to a range of new industry sectors is being created. Moreover, PhD students and early career researchers in industrial collaboration and commercialisation are being mentored.
Already, incredible strides have been made through a range of exciting projects. This includes using the technology to investigate green steel production via hydrogen-based processes; safely storing CO2 in aquifers to fight climate change, recycling car parts for a circular economy, regenerating bones with biodegradable scaffolds and designing custom bone implants.
Partners at QUT have developed new technology during the COVID-19 pandemic, using etching techniques to roughen surfaces to deactivate bacteria and viruses. This is a technique that could be used to deactivate COVID-19 on metal surfaces in hospitals and clinical settings.
M3D Innovation is funded by the Australian Government under the Australian Research Council Industrial Transformation Training Centres scheme. Professor Knackstedt said they are grateful for the Australian Government’s investment and support for this important field of science and for the translation to industry partners.
ANU and Australia are world leaders in this space. Their work at M3D Innovation will boost the country’s capacity and deliver new graduates and researchers with critical skills and knowledge across novel manufacturing, modelling and imaging.
The global 3D imaging market size was valued at US$25.7 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.2% from 2022 to 2030. 3D imaging is the procedure of rendering a three-dimensional image to create the optical illusion of depth.
During the 3D imaging process, two or more motion cameras are employed to capture a three-dimensional object for these 3D images to be produced. High-resolution images are created by combining 3D image sensors, cameras, and screens. As a result, 3D imaging is widely used in hospitals, the entertainment industry, architecture, construction, and automotive.
While the COVID-19 pandemic negatively impacted market growth, ongoing technological developments in the field of 3D imaging and the widespread adoption of and need for 3D imaging systems in different sectors are expected to drive the market in the coming future.
The growing prevalence of chronic diseases worldwide coupled with increased awareness of the benefits of 3D imaging technology are also factors contributing to the growth in demand for 3D imaging solutions.
A team of synthetic biologists at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) discovered a new method that could increase the production efficiency of synthetic mRNAs by up to 10 times. This means the effectiveness of mRNA vaccines and drugs – including those used against cancer, Covid-19, or other genetic diseases – will be boosted with an even lower dosage of the mRNAs.
mRNAs can be synthesized to teach our cells how to make a variety of proteins, including antigens, enzymes, and hormones. These are essential in fighting infections and regulating bodily functions. Thus, mRNA is a preferred option for vaccines and treatment for many distinct kinds of diseases.
However, high dosages and repeated injections are often required for mRNA drugs and vaccines to generate enough protein in the body. Thus, enhancing the effectiveness of mRNAs – for example, by increasing their protein production efficiency – is a subject of much research and debate among scientists. This is because our immune system, for example, could work better with a greater number of certain antibodies.
Now, a team led by Prof. Becki KUANG Yi, Assistant Professor at the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at HKUST, discovered a way to enhance both the life span and efficiency of mRNA. By engineering the tail sequences of different mRNAs, the team eventually discovered the optimised sequences that could produce 3 to 10 times as many proteins than unoptimised tail sequences commonly used for synthetic mRNAs on both human cells and mice. The duration of protein production is also doubled.
This innovative technology will not only reduce the amount and the number of injections needed for mRNA drugs and vaccines but will also potentially lower the cost of treatments. It can also be used along with other mRNA enhancement technologies to synergically boost protein production.
Prof Kuang stated that increasing the protein production of synthetic mRNA is beneficial to all mRNA drugs and vaccines. He added that, in collaboration with Sun Yat-Sen University, the HKUST team is now exploring the use of optimized tails for mRNA cancer vaccines on animals. The team is also looking forward to collaborating with pharmaceutical companies to transfer this invention onto mRNA therapeutics and vaccine development pipelines to benefit society.
The team’s findings were recently published online in the journal of Molecular Therapy – Nucleic Acids. mRNA drugs and vaccines have attracted much attention in recent years due to their effectiveness in protecting us against severe conditions of certain communicable diseases such as COVID-19 and their high potential in treating chronic diseases like cancers.
The global mRNA therapeutics market size was valued at US$39.90 billion in 2021 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.7% from 2022 to 2030. RNA-based therapeutics have attracted a lot of attention in recent years owing to their high potential in treating chronic diseases.
In addition, with regard to production, distribution, and safety, RNA vaccines provide several benefits over DNA vaccines. They have also shown promise in human clinical studies, which has increased the demand for mRNA vaccines and therapeutics.
Moreover, the number of mRNA-based vaccine therapeutics in oncology clinical trials has dramatically expanded as a result of the success of Moderna’s and Pfizer- BioNTech’s vaccines against COVID-19. Furthermore, barring the COVID-19 trials in cancer patients, 2021 has seen the second-highest number of mRNA vaccine trials for cancer patients, thus propelling the industry’s growth.
The National Innovation Centre (NIC), under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, and the first model of a digital university in Vietnam have just signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to promote innovation and digital transformation.
Under the MoU, NIC will support the digital university in establishing an innovation centre to contribute to the development of the innovation and startup ecosystem in Vietnam. Specifically, NIC will coordinate with the university to research, propose, and deploy solutions for innovation, digital transformation, and the development of the digital space for businesses in various fields.
The NIC Director, Vu Quoc Huy, noted that the two are committed to carrying out activities under the Vietnam Innovation Initiative (InnovateVN) as well as suggesting and implementing innovative solutions within the framework of the Vietnam Innovation Challenge Programme initiated by the private university and its partners. Huy hoped the collaboration will contribute to promoting the research, development, and application of new solutions for innovation and digital transformation for businesses across all domains.
Vietnam, through the Ministry of Information and Communication (MIC), has been working to enhance people’s digital skills as the government considers it a key task. Earlier, OpenGov Asia reported that during a conference on digital literacy organised by MIC and several United Nations agencies, the Director of the International Cooperation Department, Trieu Minh Long, outlined the measures that have been taken to boost digital literacy.
The government has established community digital technology groups to help residents learn digital skills. Between March and October 2022, more than 61,500 such groups were set up with nearly 284,000 members. MIC and local authorities have held training courses for community digital technology groups in 55 of 63 provinces and centrally-run cities. Furthermore, Vietnam is implementing a project on universalising digital skills and developing human resources for national digital transformation by 2025 with a vision for 2030.
Digital literacy not only means the ability to use a computer but also allows individuals to actively join in information processing, the creation of content, and the sharing of knowledge via social media. In the current era, digital literacy has become a basic skill that all people should have. The core of digital literacy is supporting the development of a citizen with knowledge and connectivity who is able to adapt to the fast-changing needs of society, including the labour market.
The country also announced recently it would collaborate with the United Nations on digital transformation in both policy formulation and implementation. The country is willing to contribute to the UN’s policies and strategies in the field, including an initiative on a global digital agreement in the Secretary-General’s report on “Our Common Agenda”.
Vietnam can share experiences with other countries and the UN on ensuring online education during the COVID-19 pandemic to prepare for future crises, the government said. The UN plays an important role in supporting Vietnam in its growth, integration, and strong participation in global progress. It offers policy advice to the government, shares Vietnam’s experience with developing countries, and introduces international experience to ensure a sustainable, green growth economy that balances economic and social development.
The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected many who have historically faced significant barriers to employment, including people with disabilities (PWD). According to a study, up to 800 million global workers will lose their jobs by 2030 and be replaced by robotic automation in the age of science and technology. The ever-expanding use of digital technology implies new job types and work modes. More people than ever are engaging in flexible working and working from home.
Organised by the Centre for Civil Society and Governance (CCSG) of The University of Hong Kong (HKU) and funded by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, the three-year Jockey Club Collaborative Project for Inclusive Employment’s Inclusive Career Platform conducted a “Seizing Opportunities for Inclusive Employment in a Time of Change” symposium on 18 November.
The symposium gathered various stakeholders including policymakers, representatives of the philanthropic and innovation and technology (I&T) sector, teachers, and the general public to discuss employment opportunities and possibilities for PWD under the emerging work landscape.
The Head of Charities (Healthy Community), The Hong Kong Jockey Club, in her opening address, stated that the symposium aimed to gather diverse experts and stakeholders to discuss how to effectively promote inclusive employment under the new normal and explore ways to establish a more inclusive culture.
She noted that the Jockey Club Collaborative Project for Inclusive Employment serves as a model to combat social prejudice and it encourages the opening of more employment opportunities for job seekers of different abilities.
The President of Hong Kong Small and Medium Enterprises Development Institute; the Chairman of Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) and the Senior Vice President & Executive Director of Public Policy Institute, Our Hong Kong Foundation; Members of the Legislative Council, were the keynote speakers at the symposium.
The President of Hong Kong Small and Medium Enterprises Development Institute shared his observations on the challenges and opportunities for inclusive employment. He noted that following the pandemic and technological development, the operation modes of companies are evolving due to the cost and convenience. Many new types of work have also emerged during this transformation. Both PWD and enterprises should innovate and change in a timely manner to meet the needs of the market.
Elaborating on how I&T enriches inclusive employment possibilities, the HKSTP Chairman stated that Park companies and partners have developed innovative solutions and products to help PWD improve their quality of life and well-being. HKSTP also supports inclusive employment, through incubation programmes and experience workshops to inspire start-ups and talents with different cultural backgrounds and abilities to join the I&T ecosystem.
The Park’s established I&T ecosystem continues to grow and expand, with a community of over 18,000 people now, actively developing Hong Kong into an international I&T hub. Through collaborating extensively with stakeholders from government, industry, academic and research sectors, HKSTP has been cultivating and attracting talents for 20 years, expanding the talent pool of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and improving the entire I&T ecosystem.
The Senior Vice President & Executive Director of Public Policy Institute, Our Hong Kong Foundation discussed the employment market and the importance of vocational training. He noted that in addition to achieving a diverse and inclusive workplace, Hong Kong should provide vocational training that fits the market needs, alternatives and support with a view to facilitating an enabling environment for the PWD to unleash their talent and release workforce to the society.
In the future, the Jockey Club Collaborative Project for Inclusive Employment will continue to enhance social awareness of the importance and value of inclusive employment through academic research and action platform, empower the community stakeholders, and foster collective actions for innovative solutions to unleash the talent of PWD.
The Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT-Madras) and the Tamil Nadu state Department of School Education are collaborating to improve and update the digital learning platform for school students to an assessment-focused Learning Management System. It will be deployed in newly-built high-tech labs in 6,000 government schools. It will improve the quality of learning for around nine million students.
Currently, education in Tamil Nadu’s schools is supplemented through a digital learning platform called the Education Management Information System. Researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras will use their artificial intelligence (AI) and data science expertise to come up with ways to improve the way assessments are conducted and develop a framework to disseminate educational material.
According to a press release, the researchers will build on the education department’s recent efforts of a taxonomy-based content mapping to build several tools. These include assessment creation, performance evaluation, and various dashboards to monitor the learning progression of students, as well as school and district-level monitoring.
The purpose of the initiative is to provide the educational community of Tamil Nadu with a richer learning experience, one which is enabled by the latest digital innovation in AI and machine learning technologies, the press release said.
The entire initiative will be executed in three phases: the first phase will focus on content management for educational material and assessment. The second phase will work on delivery and feedback for educational material and assessment. The third phase will focus on data analytics, dashboards, and a reporting system.
The initiative will be led by faculty, students, project associates and channel partners of IIT-Madras’ centre of data science and AI (RBCDSAI). Education is a key area of research at RBCDSAI, and the centre is currently pursuing a study that aims to determine successful delivery methods for ICT in education to improve learning outcomes.
Speaking about the project, an expert from the centre explained that a digital medium will allow educators to customise content and monitor progress in ways that would otherwise be unimaginable. The team is seeking ways to improve the quality of education by building a data-driven framework and a set of useful tools that run on this medium.
A representative from the Department of School Education of Tamil Nadu noted that the state is moving towards a competency-based teaching and learning model. The partnership with IIT-Madras is a critical step towards making this a reality for all government and government-aided school students, he said. Through this initiative, the state hopes to make personalised learning pathways and targeted improvement in teaching and learning practices a possibility for students and teachers. This initiative will also be made completely open for students and teachers in private schools.
In February this year, OpenGov Asia reported that the IIT-Madras Pravartak Technologies Foundation was working to bring computer science literacy to students at government schools in the remote, rural areas of Tamil Nadu. It set up two Rural Technology Centres in the Kanakamma Chathram and Seethanjeri villages of the Tiruvallur district. After assessing the students, the centres teach basic digital literacy and the basics of programming. The IIT-Madras provides the project with financial and technical support. Students from government schools in Classes 9 to 12 learn about advanced technologies like drones, 3D printing, robotics, AI, animation, webpage design, and hardware-based programming.
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and a China-based conglomerate company have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to forge long-term strategic cooperation. The MoU was signed by HKUST’s President and the Board Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the conglomerate company.
The collaboration leverages HKUST’s scientific capabilities and the firm’s cross-industry resources; it seeks to promote industrial applications by translating research findings into market-oriented products and services, thereby contributing to Hong Kong’s development into an international innovation and technology (I&T) hub.
The conglomerate company’s chairman stated that it is hoped that the collaboration will enable diversified industrial advantages to promote knowledge transfer of different research areas at HKUST, promote synergy among the research, academic and industry sectors, and enhance the momentum of Hong Kong’s I&T development.
The President of HKUST stated that the University is pleased to establish a strategic partnership with the conglomerate company’s Research Institute of Science and Technology in the fields of molecular neuroscience, sustainable development and microelectronics, and looks forward to establishing a joint research centre for brain science with the conglomerate company.
She noted that HKUST’s strengths in these areas strongly align with the strategic development goals of the firm, and she hopes that combining the University’s research and innovation capabilities with the company’s diversified industrial advantages will lead to technological breakthroughs and industrial development in these areas, thus contributing to the I&T development in Hong Kong and the nation and adding new momentum to the nation’s social and economic development.
Under the agreement, the two parties will form joint project teams to explore feasible collaboration plans on research and knowledge transfer in the fields mentioned above. The conglomerate will also provide internship or job opportunities for HKUST students and graduates and consider establishing scholarships. Meanwhile, the firm’s Hong Kong Business School will also explore the possibility of setting up executive training programs – including open classes with the HKUST, in efforts to promote the grooming of business and innovation talent.
Recent research found that the demand for the global Neuroscience Market was valued at approximately US$26.2 Billion in 2021 and is expected to reach a value of around US$38.8 Billion by 2030, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of about 4.7% during the forecast period 2022 to 2030.
The growing incidence of neurological disorders cases, including Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s diseases, along with other dementias contribute to the growth of this market. In addition, several national governments are implementing supporting initiatives to create awareness about neurological diseases as well as the existing treatment possibilities among the citizens.
Another report notes that the global microelectronics market size was valued at US$318.15 billion in 2021 and is expected to surpass around US$455.67 billion by 2030 with a registered CAGR of 4.1% from 2022 to 2030.
The growth and expansion of the electronics industry are paving way for the growth of the global microelectronics market. The governments of developed and developing economies are pushing for the expansion of the semiconductor industry. This directly impacts the growth of the global microelectronics market.
About The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) research-intensive university that focuses on science, technology and business as well as humanities and social science. HKUST offers an international campus, and a holistic and interdisciplinary pedagogy to nurture well-rounded graduates with a global vision, a strong entrepreneurial spirit and innovative thinking.