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SDG9 Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure

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The University takes great care to ensure resource efficiency, resilience, and sustainability in buildings, transport, and information and communication technology.

HKU applies three major sustainability practices in the planning of new buildings and maintenance of existing ones - green design, retrofitting, and architectural conservation. The Estates Office takes on regular upgrades and retrofits to optimise energy management and to improve sustainability across campus. From 2016 to 2017, Pine Court staff quarters was renovated and the project received BEAM Plus certification. Energy-saving measures included the installation of photovoltaic panels, energy saving lifts and sensor-controlled LED lights. To enhance energy management, electrical

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of courses and research.





students enrolled



 papers (in 2017)

sub-metering was also put in place to allow for an accurate and in-depth analysis of energy consumption. The renovations also included measures to reduce the building’s environmental footprint. The water tank was upgraded to a twin tank system to minimise water wastage while rainwater recycling was introduced to reduce freshwater consumption. In addition, a new green roof leveraged unused space to provide urban greenery and alleviate urban heat by lowering the temperature of the rooftop area. Apart from major retrofitting projects, the Estates Office also carried out smaller upgrades across campus. Completed in 2016, the Henry Fok Swimming Pool was fitted with a new geothermal heat pump to optimise heat energy transfer between pool water and ground soil through recirculation of conditioned water. Meanwhile, the water-cooled chillers at the Main Campus and Sassoon Road Campus are also being upgraded or replaced, which will achieve a carbon footprint reduction of 3,389 tons upon completion.


Traffic flow and transportation on campus present many opportunities for the University to advance its sustainability efforts. HKU has set out to create a pedestrian priority campus by minimising vehicle use, maximising shared use of space and increasing pedestrian accessibility and network connectivity. Furthermore, HKU’s Environmental Friendly Transport Policy encourages the purchase and use of fuel-efficient and low-emission vehicles on campus. Electric vehicle charging stations are also available for public access.


In terms of information technology, HKU provides 24-hour network services and convenient on-campus access to computers and WIFI points for its staff, students and visitors. Extending its impact beyond campus, HKU has established the Technology Transfer Office to enable innovation, strengthen use of intellectual property and facilitate collaborations around the world.  



An interdisciplinary team from HKU has been working to develop a system that allows for greater efficiency in housing construction. The project utilises two modern technologies, radio-frequency identification (RFID) and building information modelling (BIM), in the tagging and locating of prefabricated building components. In doing so, different parties involved at different stages of the building process from manufacturer, transporter to controller would have the ability to monitor and locate each component at any given time. This allows for “real time information, traceability and visibility” which enables greater accuracy in the procurement of materials, and a shortened time in the production cycle, transportation and assembly. The resulting increase in efficiency enables faster turnaround in the construction of prefabricated buildings and consequently accelerates the development of large-scale public housing projects.


HKU’s Information Technology Services (ITS) continually identifies ways to improve resource efficiency, reduce their environmental footprint, and enhance computer literacy in its operations. Among various initiatives in the past two years, the Central Document Management System was piloted with all workplaces migrated to the new repository in 2016, facilitating collaborative efforts between different departments of the University. Another pilot project launched was paperless meeting facilities. The University hopes to reduce the use of paper as well as enhance work efficiency and information security by advocating digital documentation rather than using hard copies for committee and board meetings. To combat the high energy use of servers and other computer equipment, Server Virtualisation Deployment was implemented, saving a total of 98,000 KVA from 2015 to 2017. ITS also offers regular computer training courses and workshops throughout the year to familiarise students and staff with IT services. Over the two-year period from 2015 to 2017, more than 3000 students and staff have benefited from such training. In addition, the use of electronic materials has been on the rise across the University’s seven libraries as a result of yearly increases in electronic content spending of 84.8% and 85.8%, in 2016 and 2017, respectively.

*PUE is a ratio between total power used and the power used by the devices, this is a common metrics for measuring data centre efficiency. The industry norm is 1.8 - 2.2.

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