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     The Centre for Third Sector Studies (CTSS) is one of the seven research centres of the Department of Applied Social Sciences (APSS), the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. It strives to work for Third-Sector related studies of theoretical and applied concerns in the greater China and the overseas.

     Please feel free to use the materials shared on this website. You are also most welcome to direct any feedback to us or contact us via 3400 3010 for further improvement of this site and the CTSS.  


About CTSS

     In 2004, enthusiasts of APSS who are experienced in the Third-Sector and related studies came together to set up the Unit for Third Sector Studies. It was subsequently renamed as the Centre for Third Sector Studies (CTSS) in 2006.

     CTSS strives to work for Third-Sector related studies of theoretical and applied concerns both among Chinese societies and the global communities. Since its establishment, CTSS members have been involving in various types of researches, consultancy projects, seminars and other academic events. 


Our Mission

     CTSS aims at enhancing, through researches and other academic activities, our knowledge and understanding on developments, functions and contributions of third sector organizations in Hong Kong and nearby Chinese societies, as well as in the global community as a whole.

     Three research foci of our researches are as follow:

     - Third Sector & Civil Society
     - Social Enterprise & Tripartite Collaboration
     - Social Work & Social Development in Chinese Societies

     and three levels of investigation in particular:

     - Sector Trends of Development
     - Outcome & Impact Assessment
     - Capacity Building & Organization Management


About "Third Sector"

     Third Sector, sometimes also named as "voluntary sector" or "community sector", refers to the analytical domain of non-profit making and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). This sector serves to utilize efforts, knowledge, enthusiasm and resources latent in the civil society, and, not fully captured by the government and the market. It also acts as a powerful force that checks and balances the First and Second Sectors, by articulating and protecting the needs and opinions of general citizens.

     In Hong Kong, the Third Sector consists of, but is not limited to, conventional NGOs providing various types of social services such as social welfare, education, medical and health care, labour service and environment protection; as well as more newly formed organizations concerning other social, economic and political concerns. Civil society is sometimes the term used to represent these third sector organizations in a collective sense.