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Funding results of fourth round of Theme-based Research Scheme

The Research Grants Council (RGC) announced today (July 7) the funding results of the fourth round of the Theme-based Research Scheme (TRS). Four proposals were supported for funding under the TRS with a total of some $205 million (including on-costs and indirect costs).

Announcing the results, Chairman of the RGC, Professor Benjamin Wah, said, "We are pleased to announce the successful conclusion of the exercise. I am glad that the quality of the proposals was very high and particularly delighted that institutions have put in significant effort in preparing the proposals and the selection interviews. All the funded projects, selected through rigorous peer-review evaluation by international experts, displayed strong potential for attaining international excellence."

Professor Wah said that the objective of the TRS was to focus some of the academic research efforts of the University Grants Committee-funded institutions on themes of strategic importance to the long-term development of Hong Kong. The current themes were "Promoting good health", "Developing a sustainable environment", and "Enhancing Hong Kong's strategic position as a regional and international business centre", with a total of 11 grand challenge topics identified for invitation of research proposals.

In the fourth round exercise, 37 preliminary proposals were received and 18 of them were shortlisted for submission of full proposals. Among them, 11 were invited for selection interviews. Finally, four of them in the three different themes were awarded funding. The list of awarded projects is set out in the Annex.

Professor Wah was grateful for the continuous support and contribution made by various parties in implementing the Scheme. In particular, the international experts had devoted their valuable time in making professional assessment on the proposals and making the toughest recommendation.

"The TRS is a very competitive and highly selective funding exercise. We congratulate the four award-winning teams and welcome them to join the existing 14 TRS teams in working towards the common goal: to bring benefits to the community at large and the strategic long-term development of Hong Kong," he added.

The details of the approved projects are posted on the RGC website at www.ugc.edu.hk/eng/rgc/funded_research/layman/theme/trs4.html.