Where Ideas Root and Flourish
One of missions of ORTKS is to assist scholars to apply for research funding. As resources are limited, disappointment is unavoidable. Prof Anthony Fung shares his failure stories including the very first one soon after he was on board with CUHK. “I wish to launch that project so much that I set off without any funding.” The true story of many entrepreneurs.
In this issue: #Inno330 #FundingForEntrepreneurs #ScholarReaders #Eldpathy #MPSEA #Paystack #ShekO #CulturalNCreativeIndustry
Scholar-Social Innovators → GLOCAL
Anthony has been with the School of Journalism and Communication, CUHK since 2001. He champions styling even before the bloom of the Korean drama “Boys Over Flowers” — wearing make-up, going to beauty salon, getting immaculate facial treatment, and even choosing fabrics and making patterns by himself to get his outfits tailored. “I tailored these by myself,” he said proudly, pointing at the light-coloured checkered cropped pants he was wearing.
To Anthony, styling is daily life and documenting communities a hobby. Last year, Anthony applied for the CUHK Knowledge Transfer Project Fund in partnership with Dr Sally Lo and Prof Johnson Chan, who specialise in oral history and sustainable tourism respectively in the hope of preserving the cultural heritage of Shek O lest it may vanish if another super typhoon strikes.
Anthony’s research focuses on cultural and creative industry. “This is not rocket science. What is in our daily lives can bring about enormous economic value. In the past it was driven by television, film, music, anime and manga. Today these elements have advanced by the power of technology and digitalisation.” While Google and Amazon are global big names in the industry, Anthony is expert in Tencent, TikTok and their game content, production and user.
“Discussions in recent years highlight cultural policies and how they are formulated in different countries and regions to drive economy and employment. Korea is a good example. Non-mainstream culture claiming to authenticity and uniqueness is catching big among the younger generation, and economic opportunities from such are attractive to youngsters.”
BUSINESS 2.0 -> FORCE FOR GOOD
Senior citizens may look clumsy, but they are agile in a lot of ways. Eldpathy draws on this to offer simulation programmes and hires the elderly as programme instructors to promote cross-generation inclusion and empowerment of the elderly.
Under the pandemic, online programmes are organised in which elderly instructors deftly interact and share with participants via electronic devices. Empathy develops when participants are inspired by the presence of the elderly instructors, and transforms into understanding and care for them.
China and US are no doubt the big shots in Fintech. But an article published in February in Harvard Business Review points out huge strides in African countries such as Kenya and Nigeria. Kenya’s M-Pesa enables money transfer service for the unbanked and underbanked population. In remote areas of the country, people may pay, transfer and deposit with just a SMS message. The service has extended to 7 countries with over 40 million active users.
Another Fintech superstar is the Nigerian start-up Paystack, a solution for merchants in Nigeria to get paid by anyone, anywhere in the world. Last year the 35-year-old founder and CEO of Paystack gladly saw his company acquired by American financial services company Stripe for $200 million.
Scholar-readers -> FOOD FOR THOUGHT
The “six thinking hats” is a tool developed by French scholar Edward de Bono to boost the productivity of thinking. Each coloured symbolic “thinking hat” (white, green, yellow, black, red and blue) represents different functions and roles. By mentally wearing and switching “hats,” members of a team can easily focus or redirect ideas for a more comprehensive creative thought process and more effective communication. This mode of parallel thinking is highly recommended for entrepreneurs.
BE → ENGAGING
Whether you are a CUHKer or visitor, come and enjoy a cup of coffee at the open-air cafe Inno330 atInnoPort. What’s more? Get to know the Habitat for CUHK Innovators and Entrepreneurs and become one of us!
From 19 March onwards to November this year, CUHK Entrepreneurs Alliance will hold happy hour gatherings every Friday evening. All are welcome! Register here if you are interested!
If you are developing innovative solutions that address poverty and social exclusion in Hong Kong, and no matter your project is in the process of start-up, growth or scale-up, don’t miss the chance to apply for Impact Incubator launched by HKCSS. The maximum grant funding is HK$300,000! First round of application closes on 31 March.
CUHK's support to scholar-social innovators
CUHK runs two funding schemes that support researchers to get down to social innovation –KPF and S-KPF. Selected projects may receive up to HK$400,000 for KPF projects or HK$600,000 for S-KPF companies. Over 200 teams have already benefited from the schemes, working on physical and mental well-being, social cohesion, cultural and heritage conservation, and so on. Contact us to learn more!
Looking for other entrepreneurship funding opportunities? Click here to see the list of programmes that cater for students, scholars and even alumni!
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