Lingnan University unveils plans to expand its global influence at Chinese New Year media reception

27 Feb 2024

Lingnan University held a Chinese New Year media reception today (27 February) at its Tuen Mun campus, where Prof S. Joe Qin, President and Wai Kee Kau Chair Professor of Data Science of Lingnan University, together with Prof Xin Yao, Vice-President (Research and Innovation), who joined Lingnan in January; Prof Sam Kwong Tak-wu, Associate Vice-President (Strategic Research); Prof Lau Chi-pang, Associate Vice-President (Academic Affairs and External Relations); and Ms Margaret Cheung Wai-fong, Registrar, shared the latest developments of the University with the media.


This was the first time President Qin met with Hong Kong and Mainland media since assuming office last year. President Qin said that Lingnan University, located in Fu Tei, Tuen Mun, which sounds like “good fortune” in Cantonese, is the local university closest to Shenzhen. Its history can be traced back to the Christian College in China, founded in Guangzhou in 1888, which was re-established in Hong Kong in 1967 as Lingnan College. The University has brought together different cultures on the basis of more than 130 years of educational practice. Moving toward its 60th anniversary of re-establishment in Hong Kong, the University will continue to showcase its rich cultural heritage and aspire to evolve into a distinguished research-focused liberal arts university for the digital age.


President Qin said, "As we welcome the Year of the Dragon and revel in the richness of our community, may the dynamic energy, strength, and wisdom symbolised by the Dragon inspire us to soar to new academic, professional, and personal heights. Lingnan will seize new opportunities in the rapidly changing world and continue to strengthen the University's research capabilities, especially in related fields such as big data, artificial intelligence, environmental sustainability, and carbon neutrality, to promote Lingnan as a leading international research-focused liberal arts university in the digital age and contribute to Hong Kong's vision of becoming an international innovation and technology hub."


President Qin added that Lingnan University is keen to attract and cultivate top talent worldwide and is actively pursuing a series of development plans to expand Lingnan's global influence and continuously improve its world rankings. The development achievements include:


1. The Legislative Council passed the Lingnan University (Amendment) Bill 2023, enabling the University to appoint up to three Vice-Presidents and build a stronger team to further academic excellence.


2. Top global scholars in AI, machine learning, and materials science for solving energy and environmental problems have joined Lingnan, including Vice-President (Research and Innovation) Prof Xin Yao, Associate Vice-President (Strategic Research) Prof Sam Kwong Tak-wu, and Dean of School of Interdisciplinary Studies Prof Chen Xi. The University has also welcomed over 100 new staff from world-leading universities, including Oxford University, Harvard University, Stanford University, University of California, Berkeley, Yale University, Columbia University, Pennsylvania University, Tsinghua University, and more.


3. Lingnan has achieved remarkable academic honours and global rankings, securing the second place worldwide for "Quality Education" in the Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings 2023, and has ranked top three worldwide for four consecutive years. Additionally, 17 Lingnan scholars have been listed in World’s Top 2% Scientists by Stanford University; President S. Joe Qin has been elected as a Member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts (EASA), while Associate Vice-President (Strategic Research) Prof Sam Kwong Tak-wu has been elected as a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI); President Qin and Prof Kwong have also been elected as Fellows of the Hong Kong Academy of Engineering Sciences (HKAES); Vice-President (Research and Innovation) Prof Xin Yao and Prof Kwong have been named on the list of "Highly Cited Researchers”.


4. In terms of strengthening cooperation in the Greater Bay Area, Lingnan University has been selected to be a Supporting Institution (Hong Kong and Macau) of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). Additionally, the University has officially become a member of the Shenzhen Virtual University Park. It plans to establish the Lingnan University Shenzhen Research Institute within the Park to carry out scientific research, academic exchanges, talent cultivation, enterprise incubation, and knowledge transfer.


5. Lingnan will establish the School of Data Science shortly, becoming the first Faculty of Science to provide students with a range of innovative and creative programmes and conduct cutting-edge research. Lingnan will also establish the Lingnan University Institute for Advanced Study (LUIAS) to contribute to knowledge creation and tackle global challenges.


6. As Lingnan University approaches its 60th year of re-establishment in Hong Kong, the "Lingnan-60 Global Talent Recruitment" has been launched to hire over 60 outstanding scholars from around the globe, further strengthening the University's research capabilities.


7. Lingnan will launch several new master's programmes starting from the 2024/2025 academic year, including a Master of Science in Data Science, Master of Arts in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy, Master of Arts in Digital History in Global Asia, and Master of Arts in Artificial Intelligence and the Future. Many of these integrate traditional programmes with emerging hot topics, promote the combination of arts and sciences, respond to the needs of today's society, and provide students with opportunities for communication, learning, and internships, cultivating them to become innovative thinkers and problem solvers, and upholding the university's motto of "Education for Service".