The RISUD TOAF Summer School 2016 - Smart Cities (RITSS 2016)

Sponsored by
The Ove Arup Foundation & Kwang-hua Education Foundation 

Organized by

 Research Institute for Sustainable Urban Development (RISUD)

18 - 26 August 2016

Background of RISUD
The Research Institute for Sustainable Urban Development (RISUD) was established by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) in January 2012 to develop innovative solutions for sustainable high-density cities by capitalizing on the living laboratory of Hong Kong's urban environment and the multidisciplinary expertise of PolyU.  RISUD includes 34 research groups which are organized into five divisions.  The 34 research groups of RISUD are each led by a senior researcher who is an internationally recognized scholar in the area.  The Institute is committed to multi-disciplinary collaborations to address major urban development and environmental issues.

The RITSS Summer School
The RITSS summer school aims to provide outstanding postgraduate and senior undergraduate students from leading universities around the world in disciplines related to sustainable urban development an opportunity to be exposed to cutting-edge research.

The programme of RITSS 2016 includes lectures on research advances in areas related to smart city development by international and PolyU scholars, laboratory and/or site visits, as well as the attendance at the RISUD Annual International Symposium 2016 (RAIS 2016) on “Smart Cities”. Participants of the RITSS Summer School will enjoy exemption from registration fee for RAIS 2016. The medium of all activities will be English. For details about the RISUD Annual International Symposium 2016 (RAIS 2016), please visit the webiste at:

Students who are interested in furthering their studies through multi-disciplinary research in areas related to sustainable urban development at PolyU can take advantage of this opportunity to explore potential research topics at PolyU. Financial support is available in a number of forms for PhD studies in these research areas.

Summer School Speakers (More to be added)

Dr Miimu Airaksinen Research Professor, Eco-Efficient Built Environment, VTT, Technical Research Centre of Finland
Prof. Guy Pierre Brasseur Professor, Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Germany
Prof. Paolo Gardoni Professor and Excellence Faculty Scholar in Civil and Environmental Engineering, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA

Prof. Jianya Gong

Cheung Kong Chair Professor
Director, State Key Laboratory of Information Engineering in Surveying, Mapping and Remote Sensing, Wuhan University, China

Prof. Patrizia Lombardi

Professor of Urban Planning Evaluation and Project Appraisal
Head, Interuniversity Department of Regional and Urban Studies and Planning, Politecnico and Università di Torino, Italy
Prof. Stephen A. Mahin Byron and Elvira Nishkian Professor of Structural Engineering, University of California Berkeley, California
Prof. Brian McGrath Professor of Urban Design
Dean of Constructed Environments, Parsons School of Design, France

Prof. Eric John Miller

Professor, Department of Civil Engineering,
Director, University of Toronto Transportation Research Institute, University of Toronto, Canada

Prof. Leslie Norford

Professor in Construction Management, Department of Architecture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
Prof. Ruzhu Wang Chair Professor, School of Mechanical Engineering
Director, Institute of Refrigeration & Cryogenics, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China
Dr Xing Xie Senior Research Manager, Social Computing Group, Microsoft Research Asia, China
Prof. Anthony G.O. Yeh Chair Professor, Department of Urban Planning and Design, The University of Hong Kong, China

18 - 26 August 2016

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China

Programme (Tentative)
Please click here.

Financial support
The Summer School is free of charge. Free accommodation (shared room) will be provided to all admitted students.  Economy class return air tickets or train tickets will also be provided on a reimbursement basis.   The reimbursement ceiling for students from within and outside the Pearl-river delta region will be HK$1,000 and HK$4,000 respectively.

Who can apply

  • Full-time postgraduate students pursuing a Master’s degree programme.
  • Fresh graduates of Bachelor degree programmes at the time of the Summer School.
  • Senior undergraduate students who are in the final stage of undergraduate studies at the time of the Summer School (e.g. have at least completed 3 years of a 4-year Bachelor degree programme).
  • Current PhD students are also eligible for the Summer School. Priority would be given to students pursuing a Master’s degree programme and senior undergraduate students. At least half of the quota will be allocated to these two groups of students.
  • The applicants should have a strong interest in a research/academic career, excellent communication skills as well as good leadership potential.
  • The academic performance of successful applicants is expected to be within the top 10% of students from leading universities (e.g. Chinese mainland universities of the 985 project).
  • For applicants who are not a native speaker of English and from non-English speaking universities, they are expected to meet the following requirements:
    • An overall score of at least 6.5 (with score for the writing component at 6.0 or above) in the International English Language Testing System (IELTS); or
    • At least 575 or above in the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) for the paper-based test, at least 232 in the computer-based test, or at least 90 in the internet-based test.
    • Alternatively, consideration will be given to acceptable scores in other internationally-recognised public examinations, such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).

How to submit applications
Please complete the [Online Application Form here]during which you will be asked to provide the following documents:

(1) Recommendation of Academic Referee (Please use the template below);
(2) a Curriculum Vitae;
(3) Academic transcripts/academic results reports (showing the GPA or average score of each academic year);
(4) a one-page personal statement describing the applicant’s research/career aspirations and
(5) Degree and English examination certificates (if any).

[Download: Recommendation of Academic Referee(*doc)]

Interested students are welcome to submit an application online on or before 21 March 2016.  Incomplete or late applications will not be considered.

For enquiry, please email or fax 852-2766 1354 or telephone 852-3400 8525.

Frequently Asked Questions
[Download: Frequently Asked Question(*pdf)]