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Four PolyU young researchers receive China's Excellent Young Scientists Fund 2020

Four young researchers at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have been awarded funding from China's Excellent Young Scientists Fund 2020. Each researcher will receive RMB1.2 million to conduct pioneering research in Hong Kong over a period of three years. Under the National Natural Science Foundation of China, China’s Excellent Young Scientists Fund has been extended to young scientists in Hong Kong and Macau for applications from eight designated universities since 2019. It aims to support young scientists (under 38 for male and under 40 for female) who have attained outstanding achievements in fundamental research to pursue innovative research in areas of their choice, fostering them to be internationally leading scholars in their respective fields. List of the funded projects is as follows. Researcher Department Research title Research summary Dr Xiaolin ZHU, Assistant Professor Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics Remote Sensing: Time Series Image Processing Dr Zhu has developed a series of advanced technologies for processing satellite images, which improve the ability and accuracy of time-series remote sensing for monitoring land surface changes. This project will further develop the framework and model for multi-dimensional data fusion, a technology needed for integrating data from multiple satellites in the near future. Dr AN Liang, Associate Professor   Department of Mechanical Engineering Flow and Heat/Mass Transfer in Electrochemical Energy Systems Dr An has systematically studied the characteristics of flow and mass transport in a complex microporous structure in which electrochemical reactions occur, and achieved a number of innovative results. The primary objective of this project is to investigate key issues related to flow and heat/mass transfer in electrochemical energy systems at different scales. Dr ZHOU Chao, Assistant Professor Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Unsaturated Soils and Problematic Soils This project aims to improve the fundamental understanding and modelling capability of unsaturated loess behaviour under cyclic thermo-hydro-mechanical loads. The success of this project will help engineers to improve the design of pavement and railway embankment in the loess region. Dr YANG Lei Ray, Assistant Professor Department of Computing Battery-free Internet of Things This project proposes an efficient and large-scale battery-free Internet of things (IoT), which aims to harvest energy from ambient electromagnetic waves for wireless communication and sensing. This project works towards the key theory and technologies of the new generation IoT, facilitates the coexistence and the fusion of multi-protocols, multi-target and multi-networks, and finally promotes its application in industry. It is encouraging to see that more young scientists from PolyU are supported by the Nation to further develop their research. China’s Excellent Young Scientists Fund not only reflects the Nation’s substantial support to Hong Kong’s scientific research, but also encourages local young scientists to pursue excellence in basic research and research in cutting-edge technologies.   ***** End *****

22 Sep, 2020

Achievements Research Office

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PolyU Design Degree Show goes virtual for the first time providing an innovative 3D viewing experience

The PolyU Design Degree Show 2020, organised by the School of Design of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU Design), is now open to the public until 25 October 2020. Going virtual this year in view of the current COVID-19 pandemic situation, the show has been specially designed to provide a 3D viewing experience, just like touring in person. This annual show highlights student projects from both the bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes covering a wide spectrum of topics from various disciplines, namely Advertising Design, Communication Design, Environment and Interior Design, Social Design, Product Design, Digital Media, Interactive Media, Design Practices, Interaction Design, International Design and Business Management, Multimedia and Entertainment Technology, as well as Urban Environments Design. What’s new for this year is a section set up to showcase the work of doctoral degree students, making a total of about 150 projects on display in the show. During the 3D virtual tour, visitors will see many creative and inspiring designs such as a future double-decker compartment for the ageing population, a mobile game for improving intergenerational relationships and a planter solution for sustainable living in densely populated areas, to name just a few. “The show is a stellar highlight of our teaching and learning, offering an invaluable opportunity to employers seeking the best designers; enlightening the public with world class design; and inspiring secondary school students to pursue design as a career,” said Professor Kun-Pyo Lee, Dean of School of Design at PolyU. “Enabling virtual viewing of different physical exhibits is unique among world’s top design schools especially when students had to overcome a lot of challenges during this difficult moment under the pandemic.” Online guided tours are arranged with student ambassadors to walk visitors through the show and share the creative ideas of some selected projects. A number of online activities are also scheduled for secondary school teachers and students who are eager to learn more about PolyU Design. These include live online chat sessions with PolyU Design students and an online Info Talk on the bachelor’s degree programmes offered by PolyU Design. Interested schools and organisations are more than welcome to contact PolyU Design for tailoring different activities to meet their needs. To add more fun, there is a treasure hunt game with more than 3,000 souvenirs to be given away (on a first come, first served basis) to those who take the virtual tour. For more information about the show and activities, please visit www.PolyUDesignShow.com.   ***** END *****

18 Sep, 2020

Events School of Design

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PolyU designs new dual-task exercise for stroke patients to effectively reduce the risk of falls and fall-related injuries

Stroke is the fourth leading cause of death in Hong Kong1, hospitalising over 25,000 people each year2. Despite declines in stroke mortality over the past years, it remains one of the major causes of adult disability, greatly affecting the daily lives of sufferers. Individuals with stroke also have a higher risk of fall – up to 73% of patients fall in the first six months after being discharged from hospital.3-13 To shed light on ways to reduce the risk of post-stroke falls, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has conducted the world’s first study to examine the effect of dual-task exercise on dual-task mobility and falls in people living with a chronic stroke, and subsequently designed an eight-week community-based rehabilitation programme for 84 people with chronic stroke. The study, titled “Dual-Task Exercise Reduces Cognitive-Motor Interference in Walking and Falls after Stroke: A Randomized Controlled Study” (link), appeared in Stroke, a peer-reviewed medical journal published by the American Heart Association. It was revealed that dual-task exercises were able to help reduce the risk of falls and injurious falls by 25.0% and 22.2% respectively, bringing about significant improvement to the dual-task mobility of people post-stroke. As such, the programme has the potential to roll out in community and home-based settings, where healthcare resources are scarce.

17 Sep, 2020

Research & Innovation Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

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PolyU-XJTU Silk Road International School of Engineering “Belt and Road Advanced Professional Development Programme in Power and Energy 2020” successfully completed Over 200 professionals trained in three years New opportunities opened up for the industry

The “Belt and Road Advanced Professional Development Programme in Power and Energy” (the Programme), organised for the third consecutive year by the Silk Road International School of Engineering (SRISE) in partnership with power corporations from Mainland China and Hong Kong, was successfully completed yesterday (2 September). Nearly 150 participants from 26 countries/regions joined the online closing ceremony officiated by Mr Matthew CHEUNG Kin-chung, Chief Secretary for Administration of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government and senior executives of the co-organisers, to witness the fruitful results achieved over the last three years. SRISE was set up jointly by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and Xi'an Jiaotong University (XJTU) in 2017, with a view to promoting collaboration in higher education and scientific research among the Belt and Road countries and regions, Mainland China and Hong Kong, and to nurturing diversified talents for global development. Since 2018, SRISE has been partnering with the State Grid Corporation of China (State Grid) and The Hongkong Electric Company, Limited (HK Electric) to organise annual programmes. This cross-regional and multi-cultural university-industry collaboration, being the first-of-its-kind in Mainland China and Hong Kong, has attracted more than 200 industry professionals to participate in its three years of operation. The theme for this year’s programme was “High-quality, Sustainable, Resilient Power Grid for Green and Smart Living”. In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, a series of web-based activities including talks and interactive webinars hosted by experts from State Grid, XJTU, PolyU and HK Electric were launched in mid-August to replace field trips and seminars held before. Even though participants were unable to visit the power facilities in person, they could benefit from the convenience of the internet to connect and interact with speakers and participants, and to share the latest industry knowledge of power and energy.

3 Sep, 2020

Global Faculty of Engineering

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PolyU appoints Professor Kwok-yin Wong as Vice President (Education)

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) today announced the appointment of Professor Kwok-yin WONG to the post of Vice President (Education) [VP(EDU)] with effect from 1 September 2020. Professor Wong is currently Interim Vice President (Research and Innovation), Patrick S.C. Poon Endowed Professor in Applied Chemistry and Chair Professor of Chemical Technology at the University. He is also Director of the State Key Laboratory of Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery. Professor Wong has a proven track record of academic excellence as well as extensive leadership and management experience. He played a pivotal role in implementing the four-year undergraduate curriculum and formulating the outcome-based learning approach when he was the Dean of Faculty of Applied Science and Textiles (FAST); he was also instrumental in launching the BSc(Hons) in Food Safety and Technology programme, which has become a very successful applied science programme. As Associate Vice President (Research Support), he led efforts in developing the learning outcomes and attributes for research postgraduate students and establishing the online project and grant management system. As Interim Vice President (Research and Innovation), Professor Wong has contributed significantly to the establishment of the Graduate School and the PolyU Academy for Interdisciplinary Research. As VP(EDU), Professor Wong will be responsible for the planning and development of learning and teaching initiatives of the University. He will play a key role in formulating and implementing Planning Exercise Proposals, leading the development and enhancement of academic programmes (including both curriculum and pedagogical aspects), as well as developing and executing institutional policies and plans for academic quality assurance. President Jin-Guang TENG said, “PolyU aims to provide the best holistic education to nurture our students as socially responsible leaders for the professions and in the community. Against the backdrop of the fourth industrial revolution, we are embarking on the upgrading of our educational offerings to embrace emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics to meet the evolving needs of the society. Professor Wong has rich experience and has demonstrated strong leadership in the area of learning and teaching through his various important roles at the University. He also has an excellent vision for the future development of the educational programmes at the University. I have full confidence that he will lead the University to scale new heights in the area of learning and teaching.” Professor Wong joined the Department of Applied Biology and Chemical Technology (ABCT) of the then Hong Kong Polytechnic in 1990 as a lecturer after spending three years as a forensic chemist at the Hong Kong Government Laboratory. He has served in different management roles at the University, including as Head of ABCT (2005 - 2009), Dean of FAST (2008 - 2015), Director of the University Research Facility in Life Sciences (2015 - 2020), Associate Vice President (Research Support) (2016 - 2020), and Interim Vice President (Research and Innovation) since March 2020. Professor Wong received his Doctor of Philosophy degree from The University of Hong Kong and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry of the United Kingdom. Biography of Professor Kowk-yin Wong, please click this link: https://www.polyu.edu.hk/ppoffice/president/research.html   *****

26 Aug, 2020

Others Communications and Public Affairs Office

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PolyU researchers collaborate with international institutions to enable the next generation of batteries and energy systems

As society becomes more mobile, rechargeable batteries have become essential for a wide range of applications in strategic industries such as automotive, power grid, aerospace, robotics and consumer electronics. Such increasing societal dependence makes battery safety, reliability and performance essential. The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has joined an international research team led by Collège de France, together with The French National Centre for Scientific Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Dalhousie University, to enable the next generation of portable energy storage systems by injecting smart sensing and monitoring functionalities into the dynamic electrochemical devices in a cost-effective and scalable way. Their study, titled “Operando decoding of chemical and thermal events in commercial Na(Li)-ion cells via optical sensors” (link), was published in the high-impact international journal Nature Energy this week. The research team has achieved a breakthrough by incorporating optical fibre “Bragg” grating (FBG) sensors within 18650 format cells (a standard for commercial batteries) which enables twofold enhancement. Firstly, the use of optimised internal structures in the FBGs allow for the collection of clean, high-resolution optical signals from the sensors. Secondly, advanced signal analysis is employed to decode the thermal and chemical events taking place within the battery as never seen before.

25 Aug, 2020

Research & Innovation Faculty of Engineering

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PolyU master’s degree programmes train talents in occupational therapy and physiotherapy meeting urgent demand from the social welfare sector for healthcare/rehabilitation manpower

While the demand for healthcare services is growing drastically in Hong Kong, the supply of qualified therapists is far from adequate especially in the social welfare sector, bringing difficulties to non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in meeting the healthcare and rehabilitation needs of society. To alleviate this manpower shortage, the Social Welfare Department (SWD) of HKSARG has been offering a Training Sponsorship Scheme in collaboration with The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and NGOs since 2012. The two master’s entry degree programmes PolyU is offering under this Scheme are Master in Occupational Therapy (MOT) and Master in Physiotherapy (MPT). Introduced in 2012, these two-year full-time programmes provide an opportunity for those who aspire to serve the community as competent and qualified therapists. Under this Scheme, potential talents are funded by NGOs to take part in a two-year master’s entry degree programme either in occupational therapy or physiotherapy. After graduation, these students are required to contribute to the work of the NGOs they signed up for three consecutive years. The Scheme has yielded good results with over 250 students having been trained in four cohorts under the Scheme to serve in NGOs that offer care and rehabilitation services for the elderly, persons with disabilities or children with special needs. Well received by the social welfare sector, the Scheme will be extended for another three cohorts in 2021, 2022 and 2023. The next cohort is open for application today (12 August 2020)

12 Aug, 2020

Teaching & Learning Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

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PolyU secures HK$18.2 million funding from Health and Medical Research Fund to conduct eight studies on COVID-19

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has secured over HK$18 million funding from the Health and Medical Research Fund (HMRF) of the Food and Health Bureau (FHB), to commence eight research studies on COVID-19. These projects cover a wide range of disciplines including health technology, biomedical sciences, healthcare, rehabilitation as well as social sciences. PolyU hopes that research teams from different fields can contribute their expertise to supporting the local community in the fight against COVID-19 and to facilitating formulation of pandemic control measures, thus helping to protect the health of the general public.

11 Aug, 2020

Research & Innovation Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

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Renowned hotelier Mr Robert H. Burns honoured with PolyU’s SHTM Lifetime Achievement Award

The School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM) of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) is privileged to announce that Mr Robert H. Burns, Founder of Regent International Hotels, is bestowed the prestigious SHTM Lifetime Achievement Award in 2020 and is inducted into the School’s famed Gallery of Honour at the same time. The SHTM Lifetime Achievement Award was established in 2016 to honour outstanding persons who have contributed substantially to the development of hospitality and tourism in Hong Kong, the region and around the world. In bestowing the award, the SHTM seeks to recognise true leaders who help define the global hospitality landscape and advance the industry. Expressing his heartfelt congratulations to Mr Burns on receiving the SHTM Lifetime Achievement Award, Professor Kaye Chon, SHTM Dean, Chair Professor and Walter and Wendy Kwok Family Foundation Professor in International Hospitality Management, said, “Mr Burns is a longstanding partner of the SHTM and a truly deserving recipient of this award. With steadfast support from industry partners such as Mr Burns, our School is committed to nurturing all the bright minds who will become future leaders of this very exciting global industry.” “I am honoured to receive this year’s SHTM Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Mr Burns. “It has been a pleasure to be a part of this incredible global industry. Much of the industry has evolved greatly just in the past few decades, and I feel fortunate to have contributed in some small way. It is an exceptional honour to receive this award from PolyU where the School is known worldwide for its excellence in hospitality and tourism management education. Congratulations to the faculty and staff at the SHTM!” Founder of Regent International Hotels and developer of Grand Hotel a Villa Feltrinelli, Gargnano, Italy, Mr Robert Burns is a legendary figure of the hotel industry famed worldwide for setting new benchmarks in luxury hospitality. Mr Burns has spent six decades in the hotel industry, beginning at the Waldorf Astoria in the late 1940s, while attending New York University. Following his time in New York and after four years in the U.S. Army, he completed his undergraduate degree at Michigan State University’s School of Hotel Management with an MBA from the University of Michigan. He then joined Sheraton Hotels’ management training programme, working in hotels in Detroit, Pittsburgh, Dallas and Nebraska. In 1960, he joined Sheraton hotels in Hawaii. Three years later he became General Manager of the Kahala Hilton in Hawaii, where he was also a faculty member of the University of Hawaii. In 1970, Mr Burns founded Regent International Hotels in Hong Kong, building one of the industry’s most renowned 5-star brands. The opening of The Regent Hong Kong in 1980 drew international recognition, which brought a new dimension in amenities and services to hotels in the city and attracted worldwide attention. An icon of the industry, combining Asian service excellence with western efficiency and luxury, it was voted the “best hotel in the world” among several international awards. Under Mr Burns’ leadership, the group opened 18 luxury hotels worldwide in 22 years. In 1992, Regent was acquired by Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts. In 2001, after a five-year restoration, he opened the much-admired Grand Hotel a Villa Feltrinelli in Italy. Mr Burns has long been a leader in the industry through education and advocacy groups. He was Chairman and Co-founder of the World Travel and Tourism Council, a forum of more than 200 members of international chief executives in leading travel and tourism companies worldwide. Its unique mandate encourages industry growth and protects cultural and natural heritage sites. He was a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration and the University of Hawaii’s School of Travel Industry Management. For 20 years, he lectured on Stanford University’s MBA programme. He served as Director of The Asia Pacific Fund and Chairman of The Chrysalis Emerging Markets Fund, ING Barings and a Director of Wharf (Holdings) Limited in Hong Kong. Mr Burns also lectured extensively through the Asia-Pacific for the U.S. State Department and Pacific Asia Travel Association. In New York City, he serves on the board of Jazz at Lincoln Center.   *** End***

6 Aug, 2020

Achievements School of Hotel and Tourism Management

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Researchers from PolyU and M.U.S.T. Collaborate in the Development of a Recombinant RBD Vaccine Against SARS-CoV-2

Coronavirus (the virus that causes COVID-19) has continued to spread across the world. Here in Hong Kong, people are confronting a third wave of outbreaks, with the number of confirmed infections surging to over 3,000 in just a few weeks. Since the early days of the outbreak, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has been working with various research partners in the fight against COVID-19 through the development of different diagnostic and preventive measures. PolyU and the Macau University of Science and Technology (M.U.S.T), in collaboration with other Chinese institutions, announced today a significant breakthrough in the development of a COVID-19 vaccine. Their study is the focus of a research paper recently published in the prestigious science journal Nature, entitled “A Vaccine Targeting the RBD of the S protein of SARS-CoV-2 Induces Protective Immunity”. (link)

3 Aug, 2020

Research & Innovation Innovation and Technology Development Office

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