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Issue 55 - May 2015


Table of Contents

FCE Forums for Planning Ahead

The Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE) has just completed a series of forums for its academic staff, to solicit inputs and comments from the staff on its proposed strategic plans for the next triennium starting from 2015 and to discuss ways for further enhancing its research strengths. A separate forum was first organized for each level of the academic staff, i.e., Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, Professors, and Chair Professors, where each staff had a chance to talk about his/her research interests, existing and potential future research collaborations, and views on enhancing the research strengths of the Faculty.

The final forum was held on 19 May 2015 for all the staff. The forum was highlighted by a presentation given by Prof. Peter Waldron, Emeritus Professor of The University of Sheffield and Convener of the Built Environment Panel in the 2014 HK Research Assessment Exercise (RAE). Prof. Waldron provided an overview of the assessment processes of the RAE and the last UK’s Research Excellence Framework (REF), the new system for assessing the quality of research in UK’s institutions of higher education.

Prof. Waldron’s presentation was followed by a talk by Prof. You-Lin Xu, Dean of FCE, on the proposed strategic plans. He also highlighted FCE’s academic strengths and achievements in student development, knowledge transfer, management, partnership and internationalization. The Heads of FCE’s four departments also shared their vision for their respective departments briefly.

Attendance at a FCE Forum Prof. Peter Waldron Prof. You-Lin Xu, Dean of FCE

MoU Between PolyU and City of Beijing

On 20 May 2015, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between PolyU and the Leading Group for Beijing’s Talent Affairs, municipal Government of Beijing, to promote collaboration and facilitate the development of numerous areas, including exchange visits for university professors, researchers, and students from both sides; the nurture of young leaders; building a platform for youths to innovate and launch their careers; collaborative research and knowledge transfer; joint application for research funding; and other matters of mutual interest. Representing the city of Beijing were 11 government officials. Prof. Phillip Chan, Deputy President and Provost, represented PolyU in signing the MoU, while Yan Cheng, Director of the Office of the Leading Group for Beijing’s Talent Affairs, represented the Beijing delegation. Prof. Angelina Yuen, Vice President of PolyU (Institutional Advancement and Partnership), was one of the witnesses at the signing event.

The research collaboration will mainly be in the areas of transportation, air quality, urban hazards and smart city development. The Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE) will play a leading role in the collaboration. Prof. You-Lin Xu, Dean of FCE, and about 15 academic staff joined the discussion with the Beijing delegation and the MoU signing ceremony.

At the signing of the memorandum

HKIE Accreditation for FCE Programmes

Since the switch to the 4-year degree curricula in Hong Kong in 2012, it has been necessary for many 3-year programmes to be re-accredited by their respective professional institutions for the 4-year degree framework. To facilitate this in the Faculty of Construction and Environment (FCE), an accreditation team from the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers (HKIE) paid a visit to the Faculty in January 2015 to reassess six existing programmes that have been adapted for the 4-year curriculum, namely, the BEng (Hons) in Civil Engineering (full-time and part-time self-financed), the BEng (Hons) in Building Services Engineering (full-time and sandwich as well as 2-year self-financed full-time), and the BSc (Hons) in Building Engineering and Management (full-time and part-time self-financed). At the Accreditation Board meeting of the HKIE on 14 April 2015, provisional accreditation was granted to all of the programmes. The decision was reached because the HKIE accreditation team was convinced that those programmes have the staff, resources, and facilities to provide students with a high quality education.

Full accreditation of the above programmes is contingent on continuous programme improvement and further evaluation by the HKIE accreditation team, when graduates of the 4-year degree curriculum are available. 

CEE Alumnus Receives Outstanding PolyU Alumni Award 2015

The Faculty of Construction and Environment is pleased that Ir Prof. Kin-Kuen Choy, recipient of an Outstanding Alumni Award from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) in 2014, has gone on to receive the Outstanding PolyU Alumni Award 2015. Beginning his engineering career after finishing his studies for a Higher Diploma in Structural Engineering in 1974 and an Associateship in the same subject in 1975 at the Hong Kong Polytechnic, PolyU’s predecessor, Ir Prof. Choy rose through the ranks to become an Assistant Director of the Buildings Department of the HKSAR Government in 2006. As one of the pioneers in setting up the current building control and site supervision system administered by the Buildings Department, he has also steered the development of the Code of Practice for foundation and building demolition, which has won the respect of the building industry. He became Director of the Structural Division of Meinhardt (C&S) Ltd. in 2013 after 33 years of public service. A staunch supporter of his alma mater, he has been an Adjunct Professor of CEE since 2004, and has established the K.K. Choy Scholarship to help students fulfill their dreams of higher education.

Launched in late 1996, the Outstanding PolyU Alumni Awards honour distinguished graduates of PolyU and its forerunning institutions – the Government Trade School, the Hong Kong Technical College, and the Hong Kong Polytechnic – every other year. This year marks the 10th award presentation, which took place in a ceremony on 19 May 2015.

Ir Prof. Kin-Kuen Choy (second from left)

BSE Scholar Elected to PolyU Council

Dr Ming-Yin Chan of the Department of Building Services Engineering (BSE) has recently been elected to the PolyU Council to serve for two years from 2 August 2015. Currently an Assistant Professor in BSE, Dr Chan has been a member of the PolyU Staff Association (PUSA) since 2010 and a member of its Executive Council since 2012 as the representative of BSE. He has served as the Acting Assistant Secretary of PUSA since early 2015. In his new role, Dr Chan will speak for staff concerns at the PolyU Council, the governing body of the University.

PUSA is a registered trade union for full-time PolyU staff. It aims to provide help and advice to its members on matters relating to their conditions of service, benefits, and working environment; to serve as a link between staff and management of the university; and to facilitate a platform to share views to improve the well-being of staff.

(From left to right:) Dr Rodney Chu (PUSA Chairman and elected Council member); Dr Ming-Yin Chan; and Dr Justin Law (PUSA Vice Chairman and outgoing elected Council member)

BRE Postdoc Honoured for Best Poster

A Postdoctoral Fellow from the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE), Dr Zehui Zhan, was honoured for her Poster Presentation by the Academic Committee of the Hong Kong Scholars Programme at its Annual Symposium 2015. Her research was entitled "A Computational Model on Recognizing Online Learners’ Chinese Reading Ability based on Eye-tracking Indicators," which was co-authored with Dr Patrick Fong. Dr Zhan is an Associate Professor from South China Normal University. Her research interests include Knowledge Management, Learning Science, and Educational Technology. She is now a Hong Kong Scholar under the supervision of Dr Patrick Fong, Associate Professor and Associate Head of BRE.

Dr Zehui Zhan’s award certificate

Dr Zehui Zhan (in foreground) with other participants
from the Symposium

FCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme

The following applications for the FCE Postdoctoral Fellowship (PDF) Scheme were approved by the Faculty Research Committee Working Group between October 2014 and May 2015:

PDF candidate

Principal Investigator (Dept) Project Title Decision and Source of Funding
Dr Yimo LUO Prof. Hongxing YANG (BSE)

Study on the Flow, Heat and Mass Transfer
Processes to Improve the Performance of the
Indirect Evaporative Cooling Unit

BSE: $157,500
FCE: $157,500


Prof. Xiaoli DING

Mountain Glacier Mass Balance Around the
Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau from SAR Interferometry

LSGI: $131,670
FCE: $131,670

Former CEE Student Wins Accolades for FYP

A recent graduate of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE), Mr Franklin To, has won several awards for his final-year project (FYP) entitled “Discrete element modelling on bearing capacity problem,” including a First Prize from the Association of Geotechnical & Geoenvironmental Specialists (AGS) at the end of 2014, a Third Prize from the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers (HKIE) in March/April 2015, and a First Prize from the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) on 22 May 2015. Mr To was supervised by Dr Yung-Ming Cheng, and currently works in the Geotechnical unit of AECOM, a global provider of architecture, design, engineering, and construction services.   

Mr Franklin To (on left) with Dr Yung-Ming Cheng

JUPAS Applicants Flocked to PolyU

On 16 May 2015, prospective applicants to PolyU under the Joint University Programmes Admissions System (JUPAS) had a chance to learn more about the various programmes offered by the university, key strategies for programme selection, and admission interview techniques. Staff members in charge of undergraduate programmes were available that afternoon to provide consultation and information on strategies for admission to a range of Higher Diploma programmes as well as those leading to Bachelor’s degrees. The Faculty of Construction and Environment provided consultation sessions for its programmes, including one for the Broad Discipline of Construction and Environment (BDCE). An info seminar organized by the Department of Building and Real Estate (BRE) on the programmes ‘BSc (Hons) in Building Engineering and Management’, ‘BSc (Hon) in Property Management’, and ‘BSc (Hons) in Surveying’ was also well received.

Prospective applicants to FCE BDCE consultation session
BRE info seminar

LSGI Visited by Secondary Students

On 6 May 2015, a group of F.5 students from Wa Ying College visited the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics (LSGI) to learn more about the BSc and HD programmes in Geomatics.

Mr Kent Lam, Teaching Fellow of LSGI, introduced them to the subjects and the programmes on offer, the admission requirements and career prospects of the graduates. Miss Winnie Ng, a BSc year 3 student, shared her experience of studying in LSGI and the university life. The students also had an opportunity to learn about the Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) instruments demonstrated by Dr George Liu, Assistant Professor of LSGI. They also visited the Underground Utility Survey Laboratory, where Ir Dr Wallace Lai, Assistant Professor of LSGI, demonstrated the technology and application of ground penetrating radar.

The visit to LSGI was well received by the secondary students, who left with a better understanding of what LSGI is all about.

Ir Dr Wallace Lai demonstrating the technology and application of ground penetrating radar

Dr George Liu showing GNSS instrument to the students

Mr Kent Lam, Teaching Fellow of LSGI (on right), and a teacher from Wa Ying College

Miss Winnie Ng

Invitation for Programme Admission 2015/16

Applications are now invited for the following taught Master of Science (MSc)/Postgraduate Diploma (PgD) programmes:

Building Services Engineering 屋宇設備工程學
Civil Engineering 土木工程學
Environmental Management and Engineering 環境管理及工程學
Facility Management 設施管理
Fire and Safety Engineering 消防及安全工程學
Geomatics (Geographic Information Systems) 測繪及地理資訊學(地理資訊)
Geomatics (Surveying) 測繪及地理資訊學(測量)
High Performance Buildings 高效能建築
Executive Master in Real Estate Finance 高級管理人員房地產金融碩士

The Executive Master in Real Estate Finance is the first interdisciplinary Executive Master programme offered by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. It is designed to provide senior executives genuinely innovative professional development experience together with academic knowledge of Real Estate Finance in both Asian and global contexts. Qualified candidates will be admitted on a rolling basis until the quota is filled. Please contact Ms. Karen Moy at 3400 8480 for more details.

Faculty Public Lecture

The Faculty of Construction and Environment was honoured to have the following speaker giving lecture at FCE:

Prof. Chimay J. Anumba

FCE Distinguished Lecture
"Context-Awareness in Construction Project Delivery"

Date: 22 May 2015 (Fri) (Details)


Prof. Chimay J. Anumba
Department of Architectural Engineering
The Pennsylvania State University, USA

Forthcoming Events

Sustainable Urban Development Conference
Date: 12 June 2015
Venue: ZS701, Sustainability City Lab, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Theme: Urban Studies for Sustainable Density: Planning, Design and GIS

Nanotechnology & Advanced Materials Symposium
Resources Recycling and Green Technologies for Hong Kong Construction Industries: Business Opportunities & Technical Innovation
Date:19 June 2015
Venue: Lecture Theatre Y302, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

2nd International Conference on Performance-based and Lifecycle Structural Engineering (PLSE 2015)
Date: 9-11 December 2015
Venue: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, Australia

Academic Vacancies - FCE     hongkongpolyufce
Faculty of Construction and EnvironmentDepartment of Building and Real EstateDepartment of Building Services EngineeringDepartment of Civil and Environmental EngineeringDepartment of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics

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