Science, tech a policy priority

Welcome to the 2021 Shaw Prize award ceremony.   For today's Awards, which is the 18th edition, my thanks to the Shaw Prize Foundation and its visionary management and mandate. I am grateful, as well, to the Board of Adjudicators and the selection committees. The board and the selection committees for the three disciplines - Life Science & Medicine, Astronomy and Mathematical Sciences - have this year selected five Shaw Laureates. I am honoured to congratulate them for their groundbreaking contributions, and for advancing our understanding of life, the world we inhabit and the universe that surrounds us.   The COVID-19 pandemic that has ravaged the world for over 18 months has again reminded us of the importance of basic research in sciences, global co-operation and solidarity. Scientists in many parts of the world have raced against time to enhance our testing capacity and produce vaccines to keep people safe. For Hong Kong, the commitment and investment we have made in innovation and technology (I&T) in recent years has also paid off, as reflected in the many applications adopted in our fight against the pandemic.   Looking ahead, especially in light of the support given by the central authorities in the nation's 14th Five-Year Plan for Hong Kong to develop as an international I&T hub, the Government will continue to accord policy priority to press ahead with Hong Kong's science and technology development. Since talent is a key part of that endeavour, we have recently launched the Global STEM Professorship Scheme to resource our universities to recruit international scholars for I&T-related teaching and research. I am glad that the feedback from the universities has been very positive.   Chief Executive Carrie Lam delivered this video speech at the Shaw Prize Award Ceremony 2021 held online on October 28.

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