Lingnan University (LU) hosted an International Symposium on Social Policy and Social Services Challenges in the Greater Bay Area on 23 June to discuss the latest research and practices concerning social policy and social services challenges in Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area (GBA). The Symposium was jointly organised by the Asia Pacific Institute of Ageing Studies and Lingnan University-South China University of Technology Joint Research Centre for Greater Bay Area Social Policy and Governance, and was also funded by University Grants Committee. Over 60 scholars and participants joined from mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore and other regions.
Prof Joshua Mok Ka-Ho, Vice President of LU, highlighted in his welcome address that despite facing tremendous challenges amidst the pandemic, LU has been promoting positive changes in society. He said that Lingnan has reacted proactively to the GBA plan and received great support from the sister universities in the GBA. With support around the world, he was confident that we can bring a positive spirit and make a better society together.
At the symposium, Prof Nelson Chow and Dr Cheng Shi of the Department of Social Work and Social Administration of the University of Hong Kong, delivered a keynote speech entitled “The Future of Senior Hong Kong Residents to Retire in the Greater Bay Area”. The second keynote presentation titled “From A ‘Front Shop’ of Brokerage to Regional Hub of Advanced Services & Innovation: Repositioning Hong Kong in the Greater Bay Area”, was made by Prof George Lin of the Department of Geography of the University of Hong Kong. Both keynote speeches stressed the importance of coordination between different stakeholders, including the government, the private sector, higher education sector and public services, in order to strengthen Hong Kong’s role and enhance the well-being of senior citizens in the Greater Bay Area.
Twenty-two presentations and six panel discussions were held at the symposium. All guest speakers gave inspiring presentations regarding the reform and innovation in the Greater Bay Area, cross-border families and policy response, social support for the elderly and vulnerable groups, ageing-in-place services and policies, health and education, and social innovation.
Prof Dickson Chan Chak-kwan, Director of LU’s Asia-Pacific Institute of Ageing Studies, thanked the speakers and participants for their contribution and participation. He also looked forward to the integration of different parties and bringing positive impacts to all cities in the GBA.