PolyU launches the largest interdisciplinary research platform in Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area to advance the development of an international innovation hub

HONG KONG SAR – Media Outreach – July 5, 2022 – The Polytechnic University of Hong Kong (PolyU) has established the PolyU Academy for Interdisciplinary Research (PAIR) – the largest such research platform in Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area to foster interdisciplinary research and partnership with world-renowned academics, and technology transfer to stakeholders.

PAIR focuses on research in frontier areas such as artificial intelligence, carbon neutrality, deep space exploration, smart cities, smart energy and many more. The Academy will make important contributions to the development of Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area into an international hub of innovation and technology.

Comprised of 16 institutes and research centers with more than 400 highly qualified senior PolyU researchers from around the world, the interdisciplinary research platform is the largest among its peers in the Greater Bay Area. It brings together the best minds with a wealth of investigative and professional experience to conduct PAIR’s cutting-edge interdisciplinary research programs.

The Academy aspires to provide solutions to unprecedented societal challenges related to climate change, food security, aging population, disease, energy shortages, etc. It will also aim to promote sustainable development and growth. PAIR institutes and research centers will further address the opportunities offered by emerging technologies of the fourth industrial revolution that will change the way people work and live, such as artificial intelligence, data science, Internet of Things and robotics.

PAIR’s innovative research projects are supported by PolyU’s world-class laboratories and state-of-the-art facilities, including State Key Laboratories and China’s National Engineering Research Centers (Hong Kong Branches).

Professor Jin-Guang TENG, President of PolyU, said the University is committed to developing innovations across disciplines and cultivating impactful solutions to today’s global challenges. He said, “PAIR will also encourage and facilitate the establishment of close partnerships with industry and the community, ensuring the real significance and impact of its research. In addition, the Academy will play an important role in developing and supporting collaborative research activities with counterparts across the continent and around the world. PolyU will leverage its world-class research and innovation capability and capitalize on the manufacturing strength of the Greater Bay Area to establish the region as an international innovation and technology hub.

Teacher. Christopher CHAO, Vice President (Research and Innovation) of PolyU, said that the expansion of interdisciplinary research over the past decade has brought about a fundamental shift in the basic concepts and practices of a scientific discipline. He added: “New disciplines may also emerge from the extensive research currently being carried out by scientists in this interdisciplinary environment. Their research can have a far-reaching positive impact, expanding knowledge and improving quality of life.

The Academy is headed by Teacher. Qingyan CHEN, Director of PAIR, Global STEM Professor and Full Professor of Building Thermal Science at the Department of Building Environment and Energy Engineering, PolyU. He is Emeritus Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University, USA, after a distinguished two-decade stint at the prestigious university. He is also editor-in-chief of Building and Environment reviewed since 2008.

Professor Chen said, “Interdisciplinary research can be one of the most productive and inspiring human activities in finding solutions to the profound problems facing society. PAIR researchers expand knowledge and solve challenging problems through fundamental and applied interdisciplinary research, integrating disciplines not only from science, technology, engineering and mathematics, but also from business, design, social sciences, humanities and management.

The official inauguration of PAIR will take place on July 16, 2022 at the Jockey Club auditorium on campus and is one of the key events of the PolyU InnoTech Open Day.

Annex

PolyU Academy for Interdisciplinary Research
Institutes and research centers

Research Institute for Advanced Manufacturing (RIAM)
Research Institute for the Artificial Intelligence of Objects (RIAIoT)
Research Institute for Food of the Future (RiFood)
Research Institute for Intelligent Wearable Systems (RI-IWEAR)
Earth and Space Research Institute (RILS)
Photonics Research Institute (PRI)
Research Institute for Smart Aging (RISA)
Otto Poon Charitable Foundation Smart Cities Research Institute (SCRI)
Otto Poon Charitable Foundation Research Institute for Intelligent Energy (RISE)
Research Institute of Sports Science and Technology (RISports)
Research Institute for Sustainable Urban Development (RISUD
Research Center for Chinese Medicine Innovation (RCMI)
Research Center for Deep Space Explorations (RCDSE)
Mental Health Research Center (MHRC)
Center for Research in Resource Engineering towards Carbon Neutrality (RCRE)
SHARP Vision Research Center (RCSV)

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