The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) has started a new chapter as The State Ministry of Education (MoE) has approved its application for proceeding to establish The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (Guangzhou) (HKUST (GZ)). The new campus will synergize with and maintain the same academic standard as that of its Clear Water Bay (CWB) counterpart. HKUST (GZ) will nurture talent and facilitate collaboration amongst Hong Kong, the Greater Bay Area (GBA) and beyond on education, research and commercialization, while strengthening knowledge transfer to bridge Hong Kong’s gap in high-tech manufacturing.
The groundbreaking ceremony was held today at HKUST (GZ)’s proposed site in Nansha, Guangzhou. Officiating guests included Mrs. Carrie LAM, Chief Executive of HKSAR Government; Mr. LI Xi, Party Secretary of Guangdong Provincial Committee; Mr. MA Xingrui, Vice Party Secretary of Guangdong Provincial Committee and Governor of Guangdong Provincial Government; Mr. WANG Zhimin, Director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong; Mr. HUANG Liuquan, Deputy Director-General of Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office; Mr. ZHANG Shuofu, Party Secretary of the Guangzhou Municipal Committee; Mr. WEN Guohui, Mayor of Guangzhou; Mr. CAI Chaolin, Party Secretary of the Nansha District of Guangzhou; Mr. Andrew LIAO Cheung-Sing, Chairman of the HKUST Council; Prof. Wei SHYY, President of HKUST and Prof. QU Shaobing, Chairman of Guangzhou University Council.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mrs. Lam said the HKSAR Government has allocated more than HK$100 billion and implemented relevant policies over the past two years to enhance the city’s innovation and technology capabilities, hoping that Hong Kong can contribute to GBA. She believes HKUST (GZ) will open a new page for the exchange and collaboration of Guangzhou and Hong Kong’s higher education sectors, as well as nurturing internationalized talent who has the ability to innovate. She also hopes that the new campus will provide quality support to deepening collaboration on different areas including teaching and research, transformation of scientific and technological achievements, as well as student exchanges between Hong Kong and Mainland China.
HKUST Council Chairman Mr. Andrew Liao said he is grateful for the staunch support from the mainland and the HKSAR governments of this project. “The approval for the establishment of HKUST (GZ) is an important milestone for the University’s venture in offering education in Guangzhou. Apart from nurturing innovative talent with global vision in GBA, I hope HKUST (GZ) will also bring far-reaching impact on technology innovation and industrial upgrading in the Mainland and Asia. HKUST (GZ) will follow the spirits of HKUST in academic excellence, innovation and entrepreneurship, while adhering to its educational vision, resources and teaching quality in quest of becoming a world-class bay area university,” he said.
HKUST President Prof. Wei Shyy said, “I join colleagues in expressing our gratitude to our partners for their thoughtful and dedicated efforts, and to the approving authorities for their speedy actions and support. HKUST (GZ) would not have made such good progress without their strong backing. With our complementary degree programs and academic structures in GZ and CWB campuses, and mutual access to laboratories, classes and facilities, the entire HKUST will become even more effective in nurturing talent and advancing societal contributions, in particular innovation and global cooperation.”
The proposed HKUST (GZ) will not duplicate existing programs offered by the CWB campus, but will focus on cross-disciplinary thematic programs to complement those in CWB. Academic curriculum will be designed around four transdisciplinary hubs – information, function, system and society, covering research areas including data science, robotics and automation systems, artificial intelligence, advanced materials and other emerging and frontier fields. HKUST has launched a pilot scheme on the CWB campus this year. 106 postgraduate students have been enrolled to take part in programs and related research areas proposed by HKUST (GZ).
HKUST (GZ) will shortly set up different management and governance structures to establish institutional charters, rules and policies, so as to kick off works on academic and organizational planning as well as campus development. Global search for the President and founding staff and faculty members of the new campus will also proceed in an orderly manner.
The new campus will admit postgraduate students in the initial phase, and undergraduates later when conditions allowed. Architectural style of the campus will be in line with that of CWB’s, with clusters of academic and research activities developed around the four transdisciplinary hubs, supplemented by living and accommodation facilities and connected by accessible academic concourses. Making reference to international standards as well as HKUST’s sustainable smart campus concept, HKUST(GZ) aims to become a smart green campus that incorporates the buildings into its natural surroundings – in particular the water channels that spawn across the site. The new campus will also have a sundial sculpture as the one featured on the CWB campus. The first phase of construction is expected to be completed by mid-2022.
KPF (Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates) was appointed for the construction of HKUST (GZ) following an open and rigorous tendering procedure. As an internationally renowned architectural firm, KPF has ample experiences and participated in many famous architectural projects, including the world’s most prominent skyscrapers Heron Tower and CITIC Tower (also known as China Zun) – respectively the tallest buildings in London and Beijing; and a number of world-class university infrastructures such as Rothermere American Institute of the University of Oxford, the Science Teaching and Student Services Center of the University of Minnesota, and University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Stephen M. Ross School of Business.
About The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) (www.ust.hk) is a world-class 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 global vision, a strong entrepreneurial spirit and innovative thinking. HKUST attained the highest proportion of internationally excellent research work in the Research Assessment Exercise 2014 of Hong Kong’s University Grants Committee, and is ranked as the world’s best young university in Times Higher Education’s Young University Rankings 2019. Its graduates were ranked 16th worldwide and top in Greater China in Global University Employability Survey 2018.