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Public Policy Research Funding Scheme 2013-14 opens for application
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     The Central Policy Unit (CPU) today (July 16) announced that the Public Policy Research (PPR) Funding Scheme 2013-14 is now open for application. To increase the Scheme's flexibility and to cater for potential applicants' needs, applications are accepted throughout the year. Applications will be processed once received and vetting normally takes about three months. Results of each batch of applications will be announced quarterly in general.

     The mode of operation will enable the PPR Funding Scheme to address specific issues of the community in a timely manner. It will also allow more flexibility in the launch and completion of research to better address the prevailing needs of the community.

     To encourage and support more academics and researchers to conduct public policy research, the PPR Funding Scheme will continue to be open to academics from the institutions funded by the University Grants Committee. In addition, academics who are teaching undergraduate or above programmes at local tertiary institutions and researchers at local non-profit-making public policy research think tanks may also apply for the Scheme so as to foster a culture of public policy research.

     The CPU has identified seven major themes, namely (a) land and housing, (b) poverty and ageing/retirement protection, (c) political development and governance, (d) external economy, (e) social issues, (f) economic development and (g) environmental protection, with 20 indicative research areas, having regard to Hong Kong's current and long-term development as well as needs for research on various social issues for reference of tertiary institutions and think tanks. Applicants may also submit their own research areas for consideration by the Assessment Panel and the CPU. In addition, to enhance the flexibility of the PPR Funding Scheme, the CPU will from time to time invite applications for research on specific topics according to its research needs.

     To ensure academic freedom and the quality of research projects, assessments will be conducted by the Assessment Panel comprising 10 experienced academics. The Panel is chaired by Professor Nelson Chow, Honorary Professor of the Department of Social Work and Social Administration of the University of Hong Kong. The Panel will determine the assessment criteria and details. All applications will be assessed by the Panel as well as reviewers, who are academics and experts outside the Panel. Suggestions and views of relevant government bureaux/departments will also be sought for reference. A declaration of interests system is in place to ensure that assessments are fair and just.

     Details of the PPR Funding Scheme, including eligibility criteria, the indicative research areas, the composition of the Assessment Panel and other information, have been uploaded to the CPU's website (www.cpu.gov.hk). Applicants should complete the specified application form and submit it to the CPU in soft copy via email to ppr@cpu.gov.hk.@

     Since the introduction of the PPR Funding Scheme in 2005, the Government has allocated $20 million annually for promoting public policy research. From 2013-14, the CPU will administer the day-to-day operations of the PPR Funding Scheme. To enhance the transparency of the Scheme and to facilitate discussion of public policies in the community, the CPU will upload all research reports to the CPU's website for public reference. The objectives of the PPR Funding Scheme, which are to foster public policy research and to nurture talents in this area, remain unchanged.

Ends/Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Issued at HKT 17:32

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