After years of planning and preparation, and months of anticipation, the HKUST Shenzhen Industry, Education and Research (IER) Building finally opened its doors on 22 September, complete with a mini replica of our iconic Red Bird at its entrance.
The significance of this opening goes beyond having an impressive edifice with state-of-the-art laboratories, lecture theatres, multi-purpose rooms, lounges and other facilities. Located in the Shenzhen Virtual University, National University Park for Science and Technology, this 15000 sq-meter, seven-storeyed center represents the embodiment of a growing partnership with Mainland authorities and institutions, most notably the Shenzhen Municipal Government.
Even before opening day, many research institutes and corporations have moved into the building and are already in operation. These include the HKUST Shenzhen Mechanical Engineering Laboratory which conducts research on construction energy and environment, LED packaging and module technology as well as material testing. Its other tenants include our State Key Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience with its important research on the understanding and treatment of neurological disorders, Googol Technology Ltd., the first high-tech company in the Asia-Pacific region specializing in R & D, production, marketing and support of motion controllers; Perception Digital, an HKUST-nurtured company of consumer electronics, product development and productions solutions, and Dajiang Innovation Technology Co. Ltd which specializes in UAV robotic control. In all, from the faculty, students and alumni of HKUST, no fewer than 10 technology enterprises/laboratories have been launched in the IER Building.
HKUST has been in collaboration with Shenzhen in education, training and research over the years. In 1999, the Shenzhen IER Base was jointly established by HKUST, Peking University and the Shenzhen Municipal Government. In 2001, the Shenzhen PKU-HKUST Medical Center was founded by the three partners.
The formal opening of the Shenzhen IER Building signals our commitment to the strengthening of the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Innovation Circle. As President Tony F Chan, who co-officiated the opening ceremony, said "Shenzhen has the foresight of playing a pioneering role in the Mainland's innovative and strategic development. HKUST, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year under the slogan "Our Miracle Continues" is determined to help drive this development." This IER Building is an emphatic statement of our commitment.
Officiating at the ceremony were Mr Yuan Bao-cheng, Vice Mayor of the Shenzhen Municipal People's Government, Mr Pun Yong-hua, Director-General of the Department of Educational, Scientific and Technological Affairs, Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the HKSAR, Mr Lu Jian, Deputy Director-General, Science, Industry, Trade and Information Technology Commission of Shenzhen Municipality, Dr the Hon Marvin K.T.Cheung, GBS, JP, HKUST Council Chairman , Mr Song Qiang, Deputy Head of Nanshan District Shenzhen, HKUST President Prof Tony F Chan, Prof LIU Yingli, Senior Advisor to HKUST President, Mr WONG Tat-Sum Samuel,Council Member, Dr Alice CHIU, BBS, JP Court Member, and Ms Katherine HUNG Siu-Lin, Court Member.
More than just a ceremonial occasion, opening day also saw HKUST hosting the HKUST Electronic and Computer Engineering Industrial Day in the afternoon, with a series of seminars, group meetings, tours to the industries and exhibitions to showcase the technological prowess of our Electronic and Computer Engineering Department. It is a red-letter day for HKUST’s mainland development strategy and three cheers for cross-border collaborations.