Three PolyU COVID-19 research projects were recently awarded a total of over HK$14 million in the second round one-off Collaborative Research Fund (CRF) COVID-19 and Novel Infectious Diseases (NID) Research Exercise. These innovative studies examine the prediction and control of COVID-19, the relationship between social distancing and airborne infection, and the impact of COVID-19 on design collaboration. The funded projects are as follows:


Spatiotemporal Prediction and Real-time Early Warning of COVID-19 Onset Risk

Lead Researcher: Professor John Shi Wenzhong, Chair Professor of Geographical Information Science and Remote Sensing, Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics


Project: Spatiotemporal Prediction and Real-time Early Warning of COVID-19 Onset Risk (Funding amount: HK$6.96 million)


Description: The project is expected to support lower-cost and more effective long-term control of COVID-19 and potential future epidemics. A mobile application system will be developed to deliver risk predictions and send active realtime early warning of high-risk areas or routes to the public.



Is the Usual SocialDistance Sufficient to AvoidAirborne Infection of ExpiratoryDroplets in Indoor Environments?

Lead Researcher: Ir Professor Guo Hai, Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering


Project: Is the Usual Social Distance Sufficient to Avoid Airborne Infection of Expiratory Droplets in Indoor Environments? (Funding amount: HK$4.7 million).


Description: The project will use systematic, multidisciplinary experimental, theoretical and modelling approaches to explore the detailed mechanism of virus spread through airborne expiratory droplets, and thus to enrich scientific evidence on social distancing for public health policies.



The Effect ofDistance Design CollaborationNecessitated by COVID-19 onBrain Synchronicity in TeamsCompared to Co-Located DesignCollaboration

Lead Researcher: Dr Shih Yi-teng, Assistant Professor, School of Design


Project: The Effect of Distance Design Collaboration Necessitated by COVID-19 on Brain Synchronicity in Teams Compared to Co-Located Design Collaboration (Funding amount: HK$2.78 million)


Description: This study will examine the changes in design behaviour, including body language, thinking patterns, etc. of design teams working remotely during COVID-19. The project outcomes are expected to contribute to academia and industry in the field of design.