Lingnan Hosts Third Forum on Hong Kong-Macau Education Development and the Inauguration of South China Normal University Centre for Hong Kong and Macau Studies – Lingnan University Branch Centre
30 May 2023
On 21 May 2023, the Third High-Level Forum on the Education Development in Hong Kong and Macau and Inauguration of South China Normal University Centre for Hong Kong and Macau Studies – Lingnan University Branch Centre were held at Lingnan’s Paul S Lam Conference Centre. Guests at the event, organised by SCNU and Lingnan University (LU), included Shu Gangbo, Deputy Director of the Office of Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan Affairs of the Ministry of Education, Prof Xu Kai, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Educational, Scientific and Technological Affairs under the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR, Wang Jingxian, Deputy Director of the Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan Affairs Office under the Guangzhou Municipal Education Bureau, and some 50 specialists and scholars from Hong Kong, Macau, Guangdong, Beijing and Shanghai.
In his opening speech, Prof Wang Enke, SCNU President and Director of SCNU’s Hong Kong and Macau Research Centre, pointed out that education is the key to promoting a “return of hearts” to the motherland, and maintaining the prosperity and stability of the country. He said the Forum promotes pre-eminent academic research, and therefore has great significance for Hong Kong and Macau’s integration into the general development of the country, as well as for the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. Prof Wang also noted that the South China Normal University Centre for Hong Kong and Macau Studies – Lingnan University Branch Centre is the first branch of a research institution to be established in Hong Kong by a Mainland tertiary institution, and believes that it will greatly improve academic research standards, as well as contributing to integrated education development in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area.
Prof Leonard K Cheng, President of LU, said in his speech that Lingnan is the oldest tertiary institution in Hong Kong, and always attaches great importance to Mainland China. Lingnan aims to collaborate and develop partnerships with its Mainland counterparts, and to strengthen exchanges between teachers and students in Hong Kong and the Mainland. The number of Mainland students enrolled in Lingnan is growing continuously. Leveraging the institution’s faculty and strengths, as well as its substantial Mainland experience, Prof. Cheng is confident that Lingnan will establish the branch centre as an excellent research body, and also step up efforts to contribute to the “one country, two systems” framework by conducting research on education in Hong Kong and Macau, and by undertaking the important tasks pertaining to an elite think tank.
Other guests also gave speeches at the opening ceremony, and Wang Jingxian stressed that Guangdong Province will pay greater attention to and support scientific research conducted by the Hong Kong and Macau Research Centre. Xu Kai said that the research and branch centres will encourage research relating to Hong Kong and Macau in accordance with national provisions, and strive for excellent results. Shu Gangbo said the branch centre should endeavour to attract young talents, give top priority to scientific research and theories, and play a more significant role in promoting education development and enhancing the quality of education in Hong Kong and Macau.
After the guests had delivered their speeches, an unveiling ceremony was held to mark the inauguration of the South China Normal University Centre for Hong Kong and Macau Studies – Lingnan University Branch Centre. The research centre was founded with a view to providing an academic exchange platform for scholars in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau to conduct research and collaborate with each other. It regularly hosts academic forums and publishes research results, and also encourages young academics to conduct research relating to Hong Kong and Macau, and education research promoting the development of the Greater Bay Area.
Specialists and scholars from other tertiary institutions, such as the University of Hong Kong, the Education University of Hong Kong, Beijing Language and Culture University, SCNU, Peking University, the University of Macau, and East China Normal University, also delivered keynote addresses, sharing insights and making policy suggestions regarding developments in education in Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau.