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Featured Research
















Urban and Regional Development

Modeling Interregional Migration in China (PI: Prof. Jianfa Shen)
Migration is an important component of population change and has close relations with urban and regional development. Internal migration within a country is also a complicated phenomenon involving migration flows among various cities and regions. Many efforts have been made to model migration flows using distance, population, and other factors at origin and destination to explain migration... [more]
What causes housing price in Hong Kong unaffordable? An Empirical Study on the Negative Real Interest Rate Hypothesis (PI: Prof. Edward Yiu)
There are mainly two hypotheses explaining why housing price in Hong Kong, namely, (1) insufficient supply and (2) negative real interest rate. It has been empirically found that the cause of the previous housing price peak in 1997 was negative real interest rate in the 1990s. The housing price plummeted when the real interest rate became positive ... [more]
Does Flexitime Affect Choice of Departure Time for Morning Home-Based Commuting Trips? Evidence from Two Regions in California (PI: Prof. Sylvia He)
Over the past twenty-five years, more workers in the United States have been given the option of flexible work schedules, which are designed to redistribute commuter traffic over the course of a day by allowing employees to vary their arrival and/or departure times. This research examines whether and to what degree access to flexible work schedules affects ... [more]
Contentious Space and Politics of Scale: Planning for Inter-City Railways in China's Mega-City Regions (PI: Prof. Jiang Xu)
This project is funded by the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong. The aim of this project is to examine the nature and spatial impacts of the politics of scale in planning intercity railways in ... [more]
Production of Space, Urban Planning, Right to the City and Place Governance (PI: Prof. Mee Kam Ng)
Post-1997 Hong Kong has become an increasingly interesting laboratory for civil society activism. Mee Kam Ng tries to understand the role of urban planning in the course of space production in Hong Kong and examine whether citizens' movements to exert their right to the city have transformed the mode of place governance... [more]
Inter-city competition and cooperation between Hong Kong and Shenzhen (PI: Prof. Jianfa Shen)
The project examined the urban development strategies of each city and its implications for inter-city competition, addressing the following issues: 1. A conceptual framework of inter-city competition and cooperation; 2. The urban development strategies of Hong Kong and Shenzhen; 3. Three case studies of Hong Kong and Shenzhen airports, border area development and cross-boundary infrastructure.... [more]
Inter-jurisdictional Cooperation and mega-city region governance in the Pearl River Delta (PI: Prof. Jiang Xu)
This research examines inter-jurisdictional cooperation and governance issue within the context of state reconstruction and regional politics in China. The main objective is to evaluate whether or not there is any planning strategies can be used effectively to restructure state function in spatial development in the PRD... [more]
Siting Locally Unwanted Land Uses: In your Backyard or in mine? (PI: Prof. Kin-che Lam)
The siting of Locally Unwanted Land Uses (LULUs) has posed significant challenges to planners, environmental professionals and senior government officials... This research began by asking why conflicts emerge, how such conflicts have been managed in Hong Kong and other countries, whether it is possible to resolve or reduce the conflicts and how this can be achieved... [more]


Physical and Environmental Systems

Bargaining for Nature: The Treatment of 'Environment' in China's Urban Planning System (PI: Prof. Jiang Xu)
This project is funded by the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong. Chinese cities are in the midst of a volatile period of rapid expansion, growing population, and environmental degradation. From global warming and carbon emission to vanishing local characteristics and sprawling land use patterns, the environmental ... [more]
Greenhouse Gas Exchange in Wetland Ecosystems in the Southeast Asia Region (PI: Prof. Yuk Fo Derrick Lai)
Wetlands are generally net sinks of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) owing to a combination of high primary productivity and low decomposition rate. At the same time, they potentially emit a large amount of greenhouse gases, including methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O), into the atmosphere because... [more]

Hydrologic alterations in the rapidly changing environment in the Pearl River Delta, South China (PI: Prof. Yongqin David Chen)
Under the support of a GRF grant funded by Hong Kong RGC, Prof. Chen Yongqin and his team have completed a study on the hydrologic alterations in the Pearl River Delta (PRD) region. Hydrologic regimes fluctuate in response to climatic variations and human influences... [more]



Geographical Information and Analysis

Leaf Area Index Modeling Using Hyperspectral and Radar Data (PI: Dr. Frankie Wong)
Leaf area index (LAI) is defined as the total one-sided area of all leaves in the canopy within a defined region. The significance of LAI found on its relationship with the energy, mass and gas exchange process and the net primary production of terrestrial ecosystem. The research acquired Hyperion and Envisat-ASAR C-band data in November 2008 supplemented with in situ field survey to understand the current biophysical condition of mangrove in Mai Po Ramsar Site of Hong Kong ... [more]
Feature Selection for Mangrove Species-based Classification (PI: Dr. Frankie Wong)
The research first used three suboptimal search methods including sequential forward selection (SFS), sequential forward floating selection (SFFS) and oscillating search (OS) developed from the field of computer science to select spectral and radar features that are crucial for mangrove species discrimination ... [more]
Developments of Key Technologies and Demonstration Systems for Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau Water Quality and Quantity Remote Sensing Monitoring (PI: Prof. Hui Lin)
This project will develop an operational satellite remote sensing system for water quality and quantity monitoring of the Pearl River Delta region, provide regular monitoring ... [more]
Change Analysis: Uncovering the Space-Time Patterns of Land Use Change (PI: Prof. Bo Huang)
The ecosystem, one of the most important systems for the survival of human beings, is continuously changing as a result of human activities. This research aimed to develop several spatial statistical and statistical learning models with consideration of spatial and temporal autocorrelations, data unbalance, and model robustness to support both the analysis and the forecast of future spatial distributions based on a limited set of times series land use maps... [more]

A novel Web-based system for typhoon analysis and prediction (PI: Prof. Yee Leung)
In collaboration with the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at CUHK, Prof. Yee Leung and his team have completed a project on the system development for typhoon analysis and prediction. The overall objective of this project is to build a powerful platform for the analysis, tracking, prediction and visualization... [more]



Global Change and Resource Management

Shrinking cities and resource-based economy (PI: Prof. Sylvia Y. He)
Resource-based cities play a crucial role in China's economic development. However, they are faced with the challenge of urban shrinkage due to the slowdown of economic growth in China, single industrial structure and the ‘boom and bust’ industrial cycle.... [more]
Participation in an international effort to assess the current state and projected changes of the climate system (PI: Prof. Gabriel Lau)
Lau has participated in the drafting process of the last three assessment reports (ARs) of Working Group I (WGI) of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC). This scientific body is sponsored by the World Meteorological Organization and Environmental Programme of the United Nations... [more]
China’s unexpected mitigation of SO2 emissions in the 11th Five-Year Plan (PI: Prof. Yuan Xu)
China has been the world’s largest emitter of sulfur dioxide (SO2) for over a decade. Its mitigation actions on SO2 have not only domestic but also global impacts... With the case study, an objective of the research was to understand the use of goals in environmental protection... The research also intended to systematically study China’s installation and management of flue gas desulfurization systems... [more]
The Importance of Forest Products to the Rural Household Economy of Bokeo Province, Lao PDR (PI: Prof. Lawal Marafa)
Many developing countries in South East Asia and beyond have embarked in political and economic reforms with the concomitant objectives of economic growth and the protection of their natural forests. This study takes a holistic approach by scrutinizing and discerning the contribution that forest products make in the overall household economy... [more]