The Review 2009

4 The Review 2009 • Strategic Development The coming five years will be historic ones in HKU's development. We will mark our centenary, an event that will celebrate our achievements and important contributions to leadership and knowledge in Hong Kong and the region as a whole. We will also see a fundamental change in the undergraduate curriculum we offer. These events form a background to our Strategic Development plans for 2009-2014. Over the next five years we will build on the strengths developed under the 2003-2008 Strategic Development document, when we crystallised our academic and community foundations and furthered our aspirations to international distinction in higher learning. Our aims then were built around four pillars: enhancing academic excellence, raising our global presence and visibility, partnering with society and serving the community, and developing and supporting the ‘University family’. We have made good progress in all of these areas and received much publicity for our ranking among the top 25 universities in the world by the Times Higher Education Supplement-QS World University Rankings. We now want to make further strides in our achievements. In developing our goals for the next five years, we have sought input from a wide range of University stakeholders, including the Council, senior management team, Deans, Department Heads, staff, students and alumni. What has emerged is a shared pride in HKU’s academic successes, cultural diversity and strong alumni network and a desire to see an acceleration in our internationalisation and use of English as the lingua franca , an enhancement of our role as a gateway to China, and a renewed commitment to nurturing leaders. HKU’s Strategic Development for 2009-2014 With that in mind, we have re- articulated our vision to give greater emphasis to our engagement with the region and at the international level: The University of Hong Kong, as a leading international institution of higher learning in Asia, strives to attract and nurture outstanding scholars from around the world through excellence and innovation in teaching and learning, research and knowledge exchange, contributing to the advancement of society and the development of leaders through a global presence, regional significance and engagement with the rest of China. Over the next five years we will seek to fulfil our mission by focusing on three key themes. The first theme is to enhance the student learning experience. The switch to a four-year undergraduate curriculum in 2012 is an unprecedented opportunity for change and we will make the most of it. We will invest further in curriculum reform, strengthen our efforts to recruit outstanding students while placing an additional focus on the diversity of the student population, enrich the educational environment and enhance student support. The second theme is to create and apply new knowledge that propels societies forward and transforms lives and cultures. Our initiatives here include recruiting and retaining outstanding staff, identifying and investing in strategically relevant research themes, strengthening the quality of research higher degree education and upholding research integrity. The third and final theme involves knowledge exchange with communities in Hong Kong and the region. The support of alumni will be important to our goals here, which include developing a strong knowledge-sharing culture, demonstrating leadership in a broad range of fields, acknowledging contributions to knowledge exchange from our staff and students, and embedding knowledge exchange in the curriculum. We have established priorities for achieving each of these goals, which will be supported by an enabling platform that provides financial, physical and human resources. However, we have deliberately avoided setting targets. Targets can quickly become outdated or overtaken by events – for example, the four-year undergraduate curriculum for Hong Kong was announced after we issued the 2003-2008 Strategic Development document – so we need to allow for a degree of flexibility. We also want to allow for innovations and initiatives that might emerge from members of the University family and we wish everyone to have a stake in the process. We believe we will achieve our goals through a meeting of minds and mutual respect as we work together to achieve greater success for HKU over the next five years. 5 The Review 2009 • Strategic Development