Press Releases in Hong Kong

State accolade for Hong Kong researchers

Prof Charles Ng (left) is from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology while Prof Yu Jun from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. (PHOTOS TAKEN FROM HKUST AND CUHK WEBSITES)

Hong Kong grabbed six of the  2020 State Science and Technology Awards, including three second-class prizes in the State Natural Science Awards (SNSAs).

The National Office for Science and Technology Awards announced the awards in Beijing on Wednesday.

Congratulating the Hong Kong scientists on their achievements, Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung Yun-hung expressed his hope that they would continue to scale new heights in their research and foster more talented young people in the future.

“The awards received by the Hong Kong researchers again highlight our excellent strength in basic and applied research, and bring great motivation to their fellow researchers,” he said.

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The SNSAs is one of five categories of awards under the State Science and Technology Awards organized by the State Council. As China's most prestigious award in the field of natural science, the SNSAs aim to reward individuals and organizations for academic excellence in basic and applied research in natural science.

The awards received by the Hong Kong researchers again highlight our excellent strength in basic and applied research, and bring great motivation to their fellow researchers.

Kevin Yeung Yun-hung, Secretary for Education, HKSAR

Two of the three projects were nominated by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government while the other by mainland institutions.

Prof Yu Jun of the Chinese University of Hong Kong was awarded for her research project on "Integrative Research on Natural History, Mechanism, Potential Diagnostic and Therapeutic Targets for Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and its related Hepatocellular Carcinoma".

The 18-year-long project involves systematic research on the understanding of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease with major breakthroughs in the key mechanism, therapeutic targets, non-invasive diagnosis, and natural history of this disease.

Prof Charles Ng of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology was awarded for his research project on “State-dependent Constitutive Framework for Unsaturated Soils and its Applications". 

The project team has conducted systematic and thorough research on unsaturated soils and discovered for the first time the stress dependency of seepage characteristics, suction-path dependency of deformation behavior, and suction dependency of dilatancy and strength.

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Meanwhile, the project on "The Emeishan Large Igneous Province and its Mantle Plume Origin", in which Wang Yan of the University of Hong Kong participated, also won a second-class award. It was nominated by institutions in the Chinese mainland.

The Education Bureau, with the assistance of the Beijing-Hong Kong Academic Exchange Centre, coordinated the nominations from the HKSAR government.

In addition, a research project on electronic packaging technology won a first-class honor in the National Science and Technology Progress Awards, while other two projects on the immunodiagnosis and treatment of diabetes, and a new methodology system for traditional Chinese medicine received second-class awards.

Hong Kong researchers have actively applied for the State Science and Technology Awards in the past decades and achieved good results.

In 2017, a research team led by HKUST professor Tang Benzhong received a first-class honor in the State Natural Science Awards for their studies in aggregation-induced emissions.

In the same year, a research project on the prevention and treatment of emerging infectious diseases from the University of Hong Kong also won a special-class honor in the National Science and Technology Progress Awards.