Knowledge Transfer

HKUST has emphasized technology transfer since its inception. During its years of operation, the Division of Social Science has built a substantial Knowledge Transfer (KT) tradition, as evidenced by activities such as:

  • Collaborative research between Divisional faculty and the Hong Kong Government
  • Contract research for industry
  • Consultancies for both industry and the government
  • Public lectures on a wide range of social science topics
  • Continuing education in the form of multi-faceted, professionally designed and run, taught Master’s programs.

The Division of Social Science offers three taught masters programs, namely the Master of Arts in Social Science, the Master of Arts in China Studies, and the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (the latter two are offered jointly with the Division of Humanities). All three programs can be completed within one calendar year of full-time study.

Additionally, members of the Division’s faculty have received Hong Kong Research Grants Council (RGC) funding to identify and test indicators that can be used in tracking KT from universities to the broader society—for example, to industry and government—in Hong Kong. Faculty also apply for funding from various government bodies in Hong Kong and abroad to connect their own research to the broader community. A recent example of this is a project support by the HK Government where faculty in the Division worked with local landscape architects to deliver a workshop and study tour on therapeutic gardens. The online handbook produced by this project can be downloaded here.

Finally, the Division’s one Center — the Center for Applied Social and Economic Research — contributes to knowledge transfer from the Division of Social Science to Hong Kong society and the region. Among the missions of the Center for Applied Social and Economic Research is to train a young generation of scholars and policy analysts and to disseminate data, research and policy analysis to the public at large.


“Knowledge Transfer (KT) at HKUST is driven by the Office of the Vice-President of Research and Graduate Studies (VPRGO). A five-year strategic plan maps out the University’s KT strategic deployment from 2009 to 2014. The strategic plan takes into account best practices from current operations and from those of other leading institutions, and is sensitive to changes in its larger operational environment, particularly to the rapidly evolving close collaboration between Hong Kong and Guangdong.”