Newsletter No. 197

JIGIS Chosen to Lead Prestigious '863' Project T he Joint Laboratory for Geoinformation Science (JLGIS) was selected by the Ministry of Science and Technology of China for initiating the '863' High-Tech research project on 'Developing a Platform for Virtual Geographic Environments'. Prof. Hui Lin, director of JLGIS, was appointed the principal investigator of this project. The team consists of scholars from the University, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Nanjing Normal University. This marks the first time teaching staff from the University have assumed a leading role in an '863' project. The '863' High-Tech Research and Development Programme of China was launched in Ma r ch 1986 w i t h the aim o f enhancing China's international competitiveness through the cultivation of R&D capability in high technology. The programme covers 20 topics selected f r om eight priority areas: biotechnology, information, automation, energy, advanced materials, marine, space, and laser. The JLGIS was formed by CUHK and the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 1997 to promote collaborative research in geoinformation science, in particular spatial information technology. One of its main purposes is to participate in high-tech research and development programmes in China in order to stimulate related research in Hong Kong. C U H K Co l l abo r a t es w i t h H a r v a r d on Me n t a l He a l t h Research T he Chinese University and Harvard Medical School have recently received a grant of US$1.33 million to conduct a series of collaborative mental health and policy research activities from 2001 to 2006. The first such activity was the Research Workshop on International Mental Health Issues in China, Hong Kong, and Indonesia, held from 21st to 23rd January 2002 at the Prince of Wales Hospital. Leading mental health experts from the US, mainland China, Hong Kong, and Indonesia discussed a range of mental health issues confronting the societies they live in, including early psychosis, gender and mental health, eating disorders, drug abuse, sexual problems, menopausal syndrome, novel intervention programmes, and mental health policy. Prof. Helen Chiu (left 1), Prof. Sing Lee (left 2), Prof. Dominic Lee (right 1) of the Department of Psychiatry, Prof. Sydney Chung (left 3), dean of medicine, Prof. Jean Woo (right 4), director of the School of Public Health, with Prof. Byron Good (left 4 ), Prof. Mary-Jo Good (right 3), and Dr. Alex Cohen (right 2) of Harvard Medical School Support for Three Research Projects T he following three research projects undertaken by staff members of the University have attracted funding support locally: • Development of Advanced Photocatalytic Nano-coating Technologies for Environmental and Health Industries (HK$5,600,000) Sponsor: Innovation and Technology Fund Principal investigator: Prof. Jimmy Yu (Department of Chemistry) • Household Transmission of Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in Hong Kong—Incidence and Risk Factors (HK$654,240) Sponsor: Health Care and Promotion Fund Principal investigator: Prof. Elizabeth T.S. Houang (Department of Microbiology) • The 'Author Once, Present Anywhere' (AOPA) Software Platform (HK$5,656,000) Sponsor: Innovation and Technology Fund Principal investigator: Pr o f . Helen Meng (Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management) Co-investigator: Prof. P.C. Ching M o r e Acti v ities to C e l e b r a t e C h u n g C h i ' sgolden J u b i l e e Visit by Siu Lien Ling Wong Visiting Fellow Prof. Yau Shing-tung, alumnus of Chung Chi College, director of the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, and professor of mathematics at Harvard University, visited Chung Chi College as the Siu Lien L i ng Wong Visiting Fellow of the college from 17th to 29th January 2002. Prof. Yau is a world famous mathematician 一 the only Chinese to have been awarded the Fields Medal, the equivalent of the Nobel Prize in mathematics. He has also been awarded the Crafoord Prize of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and the United States National Medal of Science. During his visit, Prof. Yau addressed Chung Chi students and staff on various occasions, including the College Friday Assembly, College Life Luncheon, Tolo Nocturne, and the Annual Education Conference. The Chung Chi College Siu Lien Ling Wong Visiting Fellow Programme was established in 1982 to promote academic and cultural exchange on campus and to broaden the intellectual perspective of staff and students. This year's programme was one of the highlights of the college's 50th anniversary celebrations. Annual Education Conference Scholars from Hong Kong and overseas gathered at Chung Chi's Annual Education Conference 2001-2 held on 19th January 2002 at the college chapel. The theme of the conference was 'Science, Society, and the Individual 一 China in the 21st Century'. Participants of the conference included Prof. Yau Shing-tung, professor of mathematics at Harvard University, Prof. Yang Shang Fa, professor emeritus of the University of California at Davis, Prof. M i n Wei Fang, executive vice-president of Peking University, Dr. F.C. Chen, director of the CUHK Institute of Chinese Studies, and Prof. Wong Wing Shing, chairman of the CUHK Department of Information Engineering. Prof. Lai Hon Mi ng of the Department of Physics was the moderator. 50th Anniversary Musical Obsession, a musical written, composed, and performed by Chung Chi students, was premiered on 9th January at Kwai Tsing Theatre. The students also took care of all the lighting, costumes, sets, as well as ticketing and promotion for the musical about a man who wakes up after seven years in a coma. Over 130 students from different disciplines were involved in the production, w i th Prof. Victor Chan Wai-kwong f r om the Department of Music as their music adviser, and Mr. Patrick Pak Yiu-charn, a college alumnus, as drama adviser. Wi nner o f Tu r i ng Awa r d Lectures on Information Science at Shaw Col lege P rof. Andrew Yao Chi-chih, William and Edna Macaleer Professor o f Engineering and Ap p l i ed Science at Princeton University in the US, delivered a lecture entitled 'TheFascination of Information Science' on campus during his visit to Shaw College as Sir Run Run Shaw Distinguished Visiting Scholar. In the lecture, which took place on 9th January in the lecture theatre of Shaw College, Prof. Yao discussed some fascinating scientific ideas underlying the science of communication and computer systems, and their relations with other physical and engineering sciences. He also addressed some challenging social and technological issues people are faced with in the age of information. Prof. Yao is also the first Chinese scientist to have received in 2000 the Turing Award, which is regarded as the Nobel Prize in computer science.