External Funding

The Guangdong-Hong Kong Technology Cooperation Funding Scheme (TCFS) aims to enhance the level of collaboration on research and development (R&D) among universities, research institutes and technology enterprises in Hong Kong and Guangdong/ Shenzhen.  TCFS supports platform and collaborative R&D projects with an element of Hong Kong and Guangdong or Hong Kong and Shenzhen Cooperation.  An industry sponsorship covering at least 10% and 50% of the total project cost must be obtained for platform projects and collaborative projects respectively.   There are three categories of projects under TCFS, namely those solicited, vetted and funded solely by Hong Kong, or solely by Guangdong or Shenzhen, or jointly by Guangdong and Hong Kong/ Shenzhen and Hong Kong.  TCFS invites applications for funding once a year. 

The Information and Technology Support Programme (ITSP) supports applied research and development (R&D) projects undertaken by R&D Centres or designated local public research institutes with a view to transferring the R&D results to local industries.  ITSP supports platform R&D projects and seed projects.  Platform projects are industry-oriented applied R&D projects with potential for commercialization while seed projects are exploratory and forward-looking in nature. ITSP invites applications for funding once a year. 

The Partnership Research Programme (PRP) supports applied research and development (R&D) projects undertaken by R&D Centres or designated local public research institutes in collaboration with private companies.  PRP provides matching funding support for collaborative R&D projects while the industry co-applicant should contribute at least 50% of the total project cost in the form of industry sponsorship.  PRP accepts applications for funding throughout the year. 

The Public Policy Research (PPR) Funding Scheme and the Strategic Public Policy Research (SPPR) Funding Scheme, both managed by the Policy Innovation and Co-ordination Office (PICO), are unique in Hong Kong in that they are the only government subsidised funding schemes dedicated to fostering and supporting public policy research in Hong Kong. The total annual provision for the two Schemes is $30 million. Both Schemes aim to promote public policy research and evidence-based research to facilitate public policy discussion. Specifically, the SPPR Funding Scheme aims to support longer-term public policy research on strategic themes, build up research capacity and facilitate collaboration among institutions/think tanks on the strategic themes.

Applications for the PPR Funding Scheme are accepted throughout the year, while applications for the SPPR Funding Scheme are invited once a year (normally in the second quarter of a year).

In January 2012, the Government injected an amount of HK$3 billion into the Research Endowment Fund. The investment income from the HK$3 billion provides competitive research funding for the local self-financing degree sector (SF) to enhance academic and research development. The research funding provision for the self-financing degree sector is competitive and non-recurrent in nature, and aims at developing the research capacity of both the institutions and the faculty members.

    • The Faculty Development Scheme (FDS) aims to develop the research capability of individual academics so that they can transfer their research experiences and new knowledge into teaching and learning.
    • The Institutional Development Scheme (IDS) Collaborative Research Grant (CRG) is set up to encourage and support collaborative research involving two or more self-financing institutions, and / or group research activities that operate across disciplines within an institution with a view to enhancing the research output of self-financing institutions in terms of the level of attainment, quality, dimensions and / or speed.
    • The Inter-Institutional Development Scheme (IIDS) is to enhance academics’ research capability and to keep them abreast of new developments and challenging research topics in relevant fields through the organisation of workshops or short courses on an institutional or joint-institutional basis. 

The Government has earmarked $3 billion as matching grants under the Research Matching Grant Scheme (Research MGS) designated for research-related purposes with no restriction on any academic discipline. The Research MGS will be open for applications throughout a period of three years from 1 August 2019 to 31 July 2022 by local degree-awarding institutions (including UGC-funded universities as well as self-financing institutions).

Donations / research funding from non-government / non-public sectors (regardless whether they are from Hong Kong or non-local funding sources) as received by eligible local degree-awarding institutions will be eligible for matching grants under the Research MGS.

The operation guide together with a set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) have been uploaded onto the UGC website (https://www.ugc.edu.hk/eng/rgc/funding_opport/rmgs/how_to_apply.html) for reference. Applicant universities / institutions are advised to read the application details as set out in the operation guide carefully before completing the application forms.