City University of Hong Kong (CityU) has performed outstandingly in the 2013 National Natural Science Fund competition.
The University secured grants for 30 projects totaling RMB15.58 million (about HK$19.75 million), an increase of 30% and 14.3% in terms of the number of projects and funding amount compared with those last year, respectively.
This year the CityU Shenzhen Research Institute (CityUSRI) achieved a success rate of 34% out of its 88 applications, higher than the national average of 22.5%. Approved research projects cover electronic engineering, energy management and sustainability, advanced materials, life sciences, business systems, among others.
This level of success in the 2013 bidding exercise highlighted the ability of CityU researchers to compete at the highest levels, said Professor Horace Ip Ho-shing, Acting Vice-President (Research and Technology) and Acting Dean of Graduate Studies. The scheme is managed by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC), a public institution that promotes and finances research projects in China.
Professor Ip thanked faculty and research staff for their hard work, adding that the increasing participation of young faculty was particularly encouraging. “I noticed many new faces in the list of successful bids this year. I am delighted to see our junior faculty taking advantage of CityUSRI as a platform to acquire research funding from the mainland, and their ability to leverage CityU strengths for research,” he said.
As stipulated by NSFC, a researcher is restricted to be the principle investigator for a maximum of three NSFC projects at any one time. Therefore, the participation of our research new blood was essential for CityU to reach new heights, Professor Ip said.
In addition, this year saw applications from 17 academic units, including several departments from the College of Business and the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences.
“We are particularly encouraged to note the successful bid of NSFC grants from departments outside of the science and engineering disciplines, which demonstrates that colleagues from the humanities and business disciplines are also able to take advantage of the funding opportunities from the NSFC for their research,” added Professor Ip.
Professor Ip said his office would continue to look for and publicise funding opportunities created by the dramatic growth taking place in mainland China so that critical financial support for our research activities would increase further.