Timeframe
Only payments made/grants distributed within the three-year operation period will be eligible for matching. Universities/Institutions should enclose the supporting bank statement/transaction record with the application.
Eligibility and Uses
Universities/Institutions may refer to the list of broad categories of research-related purpose in the Operation Guide/application form. While the list is not exhaustive, the key element is that the donation should be dedicated for research and development.
Universities/Institutions may refer to the list of broad categories of research-related purpose in the Operation Guide/application form. While the list is not exhaustive, the key element is that the donation should be dedicated for research and development. Universities/Institutions should provide brief description of the usage of expenditure or, as far as practicable, information on the research project/initiative/activity to be supported.
Yes. There is a column designated for such declaration to facilitate the UGC Secretariat to make cross reference during the course of application vetting, if the private donation/research grant/research contract concerned has been applied for the Eighth Matching Grant Scheme, and specifying the month of application if it is the case. Private donations/research grants/research contracts already matched under the Eighth Matching Grant Scheme will not be eligible for matching under the RMGS.
Under the principle of no "double matching" or "double subsidies", government funding/public funding/donations already matched with public funds (regardless whether they are from Hong Kong or non-local funding source) will not be eligible for matching under the RMGS.
No. The purpose of launching the RMGS is to incentivise the private sector to increase its share in research and development (R&D) expenditure. Hence, public/government funds will not be matched, regardless of location.
Research grants/research contracts coming under the non-local extension arm(s) of UGC-funded universities are not eligible for matching under the RMGS.
A research project or the part(s) of a project related to research is/are eligible for matching. A service provision project without relation to research will not be matched.
Yes. As long as the research fellowship or research award is not from public/government funds, the fellowship/award funding will be eligible for matching under the RMGS.
The scope includes but is not limited to research scholarship, students visiting overseas institutions for research-related work, visit for research collaboration with overseas institutions, as well as attending academic conferences. University/Institution should provide detailed information on the research activity(ies) in the application.
Examples of "capital works" that are eligible for matching under the RMGS include but not limited to building service works, alterations, additions, repairs and improvements of research facilities, renovation/space re-organisation of laboratory for research, etc. (while excluding erection of new building(s)). In terms of utilisation of matching grant, it should be noted that matching grant can be used by local self-financing degree-awarding institutions to support capital works on campus in Hong Kong, while this is not applicable for UGC-funded universities as there are established capital works programmes for them to apply for.
Under the said circumstances, the matching grant, together with the interest accrued if any, can be deployed for other research projects/activities at the discretion of the university/ institution.
Yes. As long as the external funding is not from public/government funds, it will be eligible for matching under the RMGS to top up the research project concerned.
Under such circumstances, the university/institution concerned is required to exercise tight monitoring to ensure the teaching quality and that the academic staff released is redeployed for the research project/work under the application concerned.
Under such circumstances, the university/institution concerned is required to exercise tight monitoring to ensure the teaching quality and that the academic staff released is redeployed for research projects/work under the application concerned.
Under the principle for matching, only the research-related expenditure will be eligible for matching under the RMGS. The matching grant so provided should also be designated for research.
For such cases, only the expenditure of the part(s) related to research is eligible for matching. A service provision project without relation to research will not be matched.
Expenditure of the innovation activities with proof of research relation will be eligible for matching.
The matching grant should be used to support research directly, rather than for setting/topping up any endowment fund by a university/institution. Donations for setting up endowment fund will not be eligible for matching. That said, a specific amount drawn from an endowment and deposited in a separate account dedicated for a particular research project is eligible for matching.
Genuine donations made by university/institution staff in an arm's length and in their own personal capacity will be regarded as private donations and eligible for matching. However, if the staff makes donation to their own project, even in their own personal capacity, the business will not be separate as the recipient is indeed the donor. Under this circumstance, the donation concerned is not eligible for matching.
Matching grants will only be provided for research-related purpose/R&D expenditure. Universities/Institutions should separate the research part for application as appropriate.
Applications for matching from self-financing research arms/units under/owned by a UGC-funded university will be treated in the same manner as applications from other departments/units of the same university.
Only R&D expenditure arising from donations/research grants/research contracts from non-government/non-public sectors will be eligible for matching under the RMGS.
Donations/matching grants under the RMGS should primarily be used in undertaking research work/activities/projects/initiatives in Hong Kong in order to train and groom research talent in Hong Kong. If the university/institution would like to outsource a small part of the research work/activity/project/initiative to be conducted outside Hong Kong, full justifications should be provided for consideration by the UGC Secretariat.
As long as the support/donation is not from public/government funding, it will be eligible for matching under the RMGS. Funding support from organisations like The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust and MTR Corporation Limited will not be eligible for matching under the RMGS.
Any indirect costs (i.e. "on-costs") arising from R&D projects/activities will not be eligible for matching under the RMGS. Staff costs of research assistants or postdoctoral fellows directly involved in the research project(s)/activity(ies) concerned are covered and eligible for matching under the RMGS. Staff costs of administrative/ executive/management staff not performing research tasks/duties should be deemed as indirect costs (i.e. "on-costs"), and are not eligible for matching under the RMGS.
Any indirect costs (i.e. "on-costs") arising from R&D projects/activities will not be eligible for matching under the RMGS.

Commercialisation of R&D outputs as a result of collaboration with the industries is not prohibited under the RMGS. The Government, UGC and RGC will not claim copyright or other intellectual property right of the output/work produced, or any title or right to all inventions and possible resulting patents arising from the university's/institution's sponsored research, involving the government matching grants of the RMGS. In general, the arrangements on all copyrights to, and royalties from books, journal articles, and other copyrightable materials produced by the researcher concerned, as well as all intellectual property arising out of any work undertaken under the RMGS by a researcher employed by the university/institution concerned, shall follow the relevant and prevailing guidelines and policies of the university/institution concerned. The university/institution concerned will continue to exercise full autonomy in collaboration with the industries.

Under the principle for matching, only the research-related expenditure will be eligible for matching under the RMGS. The matching grant so provided should also be designated for research.

As long as the donations are designated for research-related purpose, the ownership of intellectual property and related agreement between the donor and the university/institution concerned will be independent of the eligibility for matching.
It is not a requirement under the RMGS to accrue interest income, and there is no specific formula in determining the interest income. That said, if there is any interest income accrued from the donation/matching grant, it should be booked and reported. The matching grant and interest income from donations/matching grant can be deployed for other research projects/activities at the discretion of the university/institution, if the private donation/research grant/research contract concerned is already sufficient to cover the full cost of the original project(s).
Matching Formula and Priority
The shares (or bonds) should be valuated at the last bid price at the close of the day when ownership is transferred to the university/institution.
Supporting documents for the donations/research grants/research contracts applying for matching grant are required, as set out in the Notes of Application on the RMGS application form.
Disclosure of Information and Audit Assurance
The UGC Secretariat will only require limited information which should not be in breach of the confidentiality terms of the research grants/contracts.
It is not a compulsory requirement to specify a formal end date so as to allow flexibility and continuity of research projects and activities under various circumstances. The actual timeframe of the research projects and activities should be reasonable and it is subject to monitoring by the university/institution and reporting to the UGC Secretariat.
The matching is not merit-based and is therefore not subject to assessment.
Probity Considerations for Acceptance
  • Foreground common IP co-owned by the sponsor and university
  • A non-exclusive license for the university's solely owned IP
  • A right to use IP generated from the project by sponsors for non-profit or charitable purposes

Paragraph 27(ii) of the Operation Guide refers to any privilege arising directly from the donation/sponsorship/research grants as a result of the research project(s)/initiative(s) under the RMGS. All IP arrangement/ownership arising out of any work undertaken under the RMGS shall follow the relevant and prevailing guidelines and policies of the university/institution concerned.

Due regard should be given to the probity considerations as set out in the Operation Guide for accepting donation.