綠化工程，是 21 世紀全球社會認同的共同責任，不應遇到問題挑戰就立即放棄。綠化環保：不怕有錯，只怕不做。如果有錯，及時糾正，並避免重犯。如果什麼都不做，就不會有任何進步。
Nothing ventured, nothing gained: building a safer green campus
The collapse of the roof of the CityU's Sports Hall after days of heavy rain on 20 May was a highly regrettable incident as well as a valuable lesson for all of us. It has shaken many of us awake and its ripple effect has extended from the campus to Hong Kong society at large. The weeks since the incident have been a challenging time for all of us at CityU. In addition to the enormous pressure we have been facing, we have had to deal with various follow-up procedures, ensuring that our academic enterprise has been "business as usual". Under such circumstances, it has been very comforting to receive email messages and phone calls of support from friends of the University and our alumni, showing their concern and care.
Thanks to the contributions of the members of the Investigative Committee and the assistance of the colleagues and information providers who have helped facilitate the investigation work, an investigation report (IR) containing preliminary findings was submitted to the University and released to the public on 10 June together with the University's Response after a live press conference. According to the IR, human error is most likely the cause behind the incident.
Now that the dust from the roof collapse incident is settling, we will endeavour to comply with a "zero-error" standard as we seek ways to enhance safety. For parties responsible for the incident, we will take appropriate action, including disciplinary action if any breach of standards of behaviour or misconduct is discovered.
Other lessons also have to be taken on board. Right after the incident, some people started to speak negatively about roof-top greening project, while others pessimistically said that our policies penalised people who make mistakes while those who do nothing are spared. Some think it is better to do nothing and thus save yourself from making any mistakes, since the less you do, the fewer mistakes you make. This kind of thinking deviates widely from the innovative spirit we promote at CityU.
Mistakes are a vital part of innovation. As the old saying goes, to err is human. Indeed, the best way forward is to review one's actions and seek ways to avoid making similar mistakes. At CityU, we work hard to promote accountability and innovation with a rational scientific frame of mind, which has enabled us to thrive in an intensely competitive internationalised environment. We are not only exceling in the integration of teaching and research; we are also venturing into new academic disciplines by strengthening our existing niche academic areas for the advancement of society and enhancement of life. To achieve such a goal requires vision and courage, meticulous planning and design, as well as recognition and support from the CityU community.
If we rank ourselves with those poor spirits who neither suffer much nor venture anything, who stand against innovation, who refuse to learn lessons, or who fail to accumulate useful experience for improving life, we will fall into the ostrich syndrome, sticking our heads in the sand, rather than striving for innovation in higher education.
The greening project is a global social responsibility for the 21st century, and we should not quit when confronted with challenges. To build a green campus, the worst we can do is to do nothing. To err is human, as long as we rectify errors along the way. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
12 August, 2016