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Prof. Ku Hok-bun
PolyU Scholars Hub

Prof. Hok Bun KU



Prof. Hok Bun KU holds a PhD degree from the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at SOAS, University of London. Now he is a Professor, the Programme Leader of DSW and Sociology Panel Chair in the Department of Applied Social Sciences at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He is also an Honorary Professor at China Youth University for Political Science. He serves as the Director of China and Global Development Network, Co-Director of the Peking University-The Hong Kong Polytechnic University China Social Work Research Centre, and Associate Chief Editor of China Journal of Social Work.


He was Fulbright Scholar at Washington University in St. Louis in 2007 and Senior Research Fellow at Durham University in the UK. He was also an Honorary Professor at the Minzu University of China, Yunnan University, Sun Yat-sen University in China, and Shandong Youth University for Political Sciences. He was a visiting scholar at the Central China Agriculture University, Taiwan National Central University, and York University in Toronto. He was Associate Editor of Action Research and Chief Editor of China Journal of Social Work.


Prof. KU strongly engages in practice and action research in China. He endeavours to advocate the participatory research methodology. With more than fifteen years of experience, involving in China’s rural development, he has been writing extensively on topics related to rural development, cultural politics, participatory design, social exclusion and marginality, and social work education.

Education and Academic Qualifications

  • PhD Department of Anthropology and Sociology, SOAS, University of London
  • MPhil Department of Sociology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • BA (First Class Honours), Department of Sociology, Hong Kong Baptist University

Research Interests

  • Cultural politics
  • Race, ethnicity, and social exclusion
  • Social economy and social development
  • Disaster and green social work
  • Space and community development
  • Belt and road studies

Grants (selected)

2022-2028, PI, Responding to Key State Policies in Xi’s Era: A Synthesis of Social Work and Social Development, and the Way Forward, HK$ 8,250,000, funded by PolyU for Research Center (non-pair)

2022-2025, PI, Advancing collaborative practice research with children, youth and families in poverty in Kazakhstan and Central Asia, HK$ 2,000,000, funded by PolyU

2021-2024, PI, Sustainable Livelihood Development in Three Remote Villages in China, HK$ 4,989,665,  funded by the Kadoorie Charitable Foundation

2022-2023, A study on the social service projects under the COVID-19 in PRC, HK$ 1,747,696, Funded by Keswick Foundation Limited

2020-2023, PI, Evaluation as Learning Tools: Practice Research for the PRH Projects, HK$ 3,761,000, funded by Community Investment and Inclusion Fund, Labor and Welfare Bureau, HKSAR


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