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Results of Competitive Earmarked Research Grant 2007/2008 and the 4th Round of Public Policy Research Funding Scheme announced (Friday, 29 June 2007)


The Research Grants Council (RGC) announced today (June 29) its decisions on the annual Competitive Earmarked Research Grant (CERG) exercise for 2007/2008 and the 4th Round of the Public Policy Research Funding Scheme.

This year the RGC received a record high of 2,081 CERG applications submitted by the academic staff of the eight institutions funded by the University Grants Committee (UGC), representing an increase of about six per cent over the last year. Total funding of about $1,893 million was sought. After rigorous international peer-review, the RGC decided to fund 779 projects with a total amount of $487.0 million. The overall success rate is about 37%.

Out of the 779 projects supported, 316 projects were in the Engineering disciplines, 155 in disciplines concerning Biology and Medicine, 139 in areas related to Humanities, Social Sciences & Business Studies, and 169 in Physical Sciences, Chemical Engineering & Mathematics.

A table showing the number of funded projects and the amount of grants by broad subject discipline and institution is set out at the Annex. [pdf file]

Commenting on the results, Professor Roland Chin, Chairman of the RGC, said, "Overall, the Council is very impressed by the quality and diversity of the research proposals in this exercise. We attach high importance to quality in the selection and increased funding support is provided to high quality proposals. The average funding level per project has increased by 7% to $625,000."

"Research training drives discovery, and discovery leads to new services and products. There is proven acceptance around the world that research benefits society economically. Research is a whole sequence of events, starting from fundamental research, to applied research, knowledge transfer, commercialization; and each of them produces impact and benefits to the society. The RGC is dedicated to championing the development of high-quality research in Hong Kong, and will continue to provide a robust research environment, which will enable our researchers and students to develop and excel in their chosen fields and to contribute fully to the development of Hong Kong." Professor Chin added.

In parallel with the CERG 2007/2008 exercise, the RGC also made decision on funding for the 4th Round of the Public Policy Research Funding Scheme. Out of the total 61 research proposals received, the RGC decided to fund 11 projects across a wide spectrum of policy areas, including education, policy in support of families, urban planning, effective government and enhancing Hong Kong's competitiveness. The total amount of funding support is $6.9 million. Details of these funded projects are posted on the RGC's website at - http://www.ugc.edu.hk/eng/rgc/funded_research/funding_results/ppr4.html

"The 4th Round of the Public Policy Research Funding Scheme has attracted high quality public policy research proposals. The Council has applied the same high RGC standard in the selection process which involved rigorous peer-review by international experts in the respective fields. We are confident that the results of these projects will make a substantial impact in policy matters in Hong Kong." Prof Chin said.

Established in 1991, the RGC is a semi-autonomous advisory body operating under the aegis of the UGC. As an agency supporting academic research in higher education institutions, the RGC is responsible for supporting and fostering research in all disciplines taught in the institutions so that Hong Kong can keep up with current world-wide developments.

UGC Secretariat

29 June 2007

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