HKU obtains excellent results in RGC’s latest funding exercise

The University of Hong Kong (HKU) continues to outperform other institutions in Research Grants Council’s General Research Fund and other grants for 2021/22.

HKU has maintained the leading position in General Research Fund (GRF) and Early Career Scheme (ECS) by successfully securing both the highest number of approved projects and the largest share of funding in both schemes.

For GRF, 221 proposals submitted were approved with a funding amount of $178m. Among the five panels, HKU stands first in two – Biology & Medicine Panel and Humanities & Social Sciences Panel, by receiving the highest number of awarded projects. The University’s young researchers have gained support for 43 projects with a total awarded amount of $32m. Our number of funded projects, success rate and share of funding are the highest among institutions.

Research Fellow Scheme (RFS) and Senior Research Fellow Scheme (SRFS)
HKU has secured three awards for the Research Fellow Scheme (RFS) and two awards for the Senior Research Fellow Scheme (SRFS). The awardees are:

Senior Research Fellows
Professor Hongzhe SUN (Department of Chemistry)
Professor Wang YAO (Department of Physics)

Research Fellows
Dr Kaibin HUANG (Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering)
Dr Stephanie K.Y. MA (School of Biomedical Sciences)
Dr Jinyao TANG (Department of Chemistry)

The two schemes aim to provide sustained support and relief from teaching and administrative duties to exceptionally outstanding researchers. Each RFS awardee will receive a fellowship grant of around HK$5.2 million, and each SRFS awardee will receive a fellowship grant of around HK$7.8 million, both over a period of 60 months.

Theme-based Research Scheme (TRS) 2021/22
In the 11th round of the Theme-based Research Scheme, among the eight funded projects, HKU is participating in six and is the coordinating institution in three projects. The HKU coordinated research are all in Theme 1: Promoting Good Health, namely:

“Virological, Immunological and Epidemiological Characterization of COVID-19” Project Coordinator: Professor Leo L.M. POON, School of Public Health, LKS Faculty of Medicine

“Ecology, Molecular Virology and Pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2: From Bedside to Bench and Back”
Project Coordinator: Professor Dong-Yan JIN, School of Biomedical Sciences, LKS Faculty of Medicine

“Translating Disease-Mechanism Discoveries to Improve Treatment of Biliary Atresia, an Intractable Newborn Liver Disease”
Project Coordinator: Dr Vincent C.H. LUI, Department of Surgery, LKS Faculty of Medicine

Under the Humanities and Social Sciences Prestigious Fellowship Scheme (HSSPFS), HKU continues to dominate over the others by receiving 3 out of 9 funded projects, which is a solid testimony of the quality and caliber of our senior academics in the humanities and social science disciplines. The HKU awardees are:
Professor David R. CARLESS (Faculty of Education)
Professor Julia C. KUEHN (Faculty of Arts) and
Dr Olga A. ZAYTS (Faculty of Arts).

Professor Max Shen, Vice-President (Research) of HKU, offered his warmest congratulations to the researchers and their research teams. He said: “These grants are clear demonstration of the research competitiveness and academic excellence of our faculties and researchers. I wish them all the success in the deliverables of these projects, exploring innovative ideas for novel solutions in their respective fields. We will continue to enhance our quality of research, generate impact and contribute to society.”

More details on HKU’s funding results can be found at: