CityU signs a strategic cooperation agreement with Shanghai Jiao Tong University to promote science and innovation in Hong Kong and Shanghai

The 2024 Pujiang Innovation Forum, organised by the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, was successfully held in Hong Kong on 27 April 2024. During the Forum, City University of Hong Kong (CityU) and Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) signed a strategic cooperation agreement, announcing their plans to support the development of start-ups of both institutions in Hong Kong and Shanghai. This will be achieved through the provision of space and incubation, as well as developmental and promotional support in the Mainland for start-ups incubated by CityU’s HK Tech 300 programme. The agreement also covers active exchange and collaboration with the Academy of Innovation at CityU and enhancing the effectiveness of scientific research results transformation at both universities.

Professor Michael Yang Mengsu, Senior Vice-President (Innovation and Enterprise) of CityU (first from left) and Professor Xi Lifeng, Vice-President of SJTU (second from left) signed an agreement on strategic cooperation between the two universities. A number of agreements on science and technology innovation cooperation were also signed at the event between other entities from Hong Kong and Shanghai. (Photo source: Forum Organiser)

The agreement signing ceremony was held at the “2024 Pujiang Innovation Forum: New Space for Innovation Cooperation – Shanghai Hong Kong Science and Technology Innovation Dialogue” (「2024浦江創新論壇:創新協力新空間——滬港科技創新對話」). The Forum facilitated in-depth discussions on innovative areas of science and technology, as well as emerging industries, and explored ways to foster an innovation ecosystem in both Hong Kong and Shanghai. Furthermore, it promoted cooperation and exchanges in scientific research, start-up incubation, industrial chain extension, and fintech. The Forum commenced with opening speeches by Mr Gong Zheng, Mayor of Shanghai, and Mr Paul Chan Mo-po, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR Government. This was followed by keynote addresses by Professor Sun Dong, Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry of the HKSAR Government, and Mr Luo Dajin, Director of the Science and Technology Commission of Shanghai Municipality. A number of speeches by other guest speakers were also delivered at the event.

Integration of resources to create a win-win situation

The strategic cooperation agreement between CityU and SJTU was signed by Professor Michael Yang Mengsu, Senior Vice-President (Innovation and Enterprise) of CityU, and Professor Xi Lifeng, Vice-President of SJTU, in the presence of Mr Gong Zheng, Mr Paul Chan Mo-po, and other guests at the event.

SJTU is a “comprehensive, innovative and international” national key university that was ranked 51st in the QS World University Rankings 2024. The Shanghai “Grand neoBay Sci-tech Innovation Park” also regards SJTU as its core engine, given the university’s exemplary level of science, technology and innovation.

In his speech on the construction of the “Grand neoBay Sci-tech Innovation Park”, Professor Xi noted, “With the important mission of serving Shanghai to build a sci-tech innovation centre with global influence, SJTU has built a series of new research platforms in the ‘Grand neoBay’ to facilitate the clustering of key industries in the region. This will enable the linking of talent, innovation, industry and funding chains. SJTU is keen to deepen its exchanges with relevant parties in Hong Kong, including government departments, academic institutions and research centres, in the ‘Grand neoBay’ initiative. It also aspires to expand the sci-tech innovation network of each other and contribute to the advancement of Shanghai-Hong Kong sci-tech innovation cooperation.”

Professor Yang said, “CityU is committed to nurturing young entrepreneurs and deep-tech start-ups through the HK Tech 300 programme and the CityU Academy of Innovation. To date, over 90 public and private organisations have become strategic partners, co-investment partners and supporting organisations of HK Tech 300. The partnership with SJTU will enable CityU to further expand its work in science, technology and innovation. The collaboration will facilitate in-depth cooperation, resources integration and mutual benefits between the two universities, and advance the development of the science, technology and innovation ecosystems in Hong Kong, Shanghai and the entire country.”

Mutual support for young people and start-ups

The collaboration will be based on CityU’s HK Tech 300 programme and SJTU’s model of breeding innovation driven by science and technology in the “Grand neoBay”. The partnership will co-create an innovation and start-up incubation base, and organise innovation and entrepreneurship competitions. Moreover, HK Tech 300 will be supported in the Mainland (especially in Shanghai) in terms of promotion, space, start-up incubation and development. In addition, CityU will provide comprehensive support in terms of space and services to facilitate the incubation and development of SJTU-affiliated start-ups in Hong Kong.

To further nurture research talent, the Master of Science in Venture Creation programme offered by the CityU Academy of Innovation (CAI) will strengthen exchanges and cooperation with SJTU's Master of Technology Transfer programme. Through the CAI’s Graduate Research and Innovation Trek Programme (GRIT), it will also provide professional guidance to the SJTU-affiliated start-up teams, guiding the trainees in transforming and commercialising their research results to become start-up projects.

SJTU will support the CAI’s Overseas Start-up Technology Entrepreneur Programme (STEP), providing selected CityU undergraduates with internship opportunities in leading technology-based companies and organisations around the world.


The Shanghai-Hong Kong Technology Transfer Network (SHK-TNN) was inaugurated at the Forum, attended by Professor Johnny Ho Chung-yin (third from left), Associate Vice-President (Enterprise) of CityU. (Photo source: Forum Organiser)

CityU and SJTU will leverage the scientific research resources and industrial base of both universities to enhance complementarity and consolidate the valuable science, technology and innovation resources. The two universities also intend to promote cooperation in technological research, research results transformation and entrepreneurship among their respective faculties, students and alumni. This will contribute to the development of an innovation and technology ecosystem between Hong Kong and Shanghai.

Hong Kong and Shanghai universities join hands to build cooperation networks

The Forum also featured the launch of the Shanghai-Hong Kong Technology Transfer Network (SHK-TNN), which was attended by representatives from the technology transfer offices of a number of universities, including CityU, The University of Hong Kong, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong Baptist University, Fudan University, SJTU, Tongji University and Shanghai University, as well as representatives from the National Eastern Tech-Transfer Center.

A number of speeches were also delivered at the Forum. Professor Johnny Ho Chung-yin, Associate Vice-President (Enterprise) of CityU, was one of the speakers at the “Innovation Dialogue”. He shared insights with other leading academics and entrepreneurs in the field of innovation from Hong Kong and Shanghai on the achievements, experience and perspectives of collaboration between the two places, showcasing concrete and successful case studies.