Mr Lam, Professor Ng, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am deeply honored to join you today, to accept this Honorary Fellowship from the Social Enterprise Research Academy.
For almost a decade, the Academy has offered itself… as a unique gathering point for social responsibility and sustainable development in Asia.
Thousands of people in the region… have been impacted by its work — and, in becoming an Honorary Fellow, I am also supporting a ‘future of equity’… that the Academy envisions.
As a leader in higher education, I believe in the power of young people, and their ability to reshape and improve humanity.
Through teaching, learning and research, the HKU family has for more than a century… used our skill and knowledge to unleash and fulfil our potential.
That is why I am hopeful for the future. It’s true today… that we are facing multiple challenges – poverty, global recession, food insecurity.
But we have survived greater problems before — and we will “survive” once again… thanks to continuous scientific breakthroughs… and an alliance of global youth that is pushing for social good.
Among these challenges, climate change is, particularly, an existential threat to humanity, but I am encouraged by recent developments here at home.
China pledged to peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030, and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060; Hong Kong has also released its own Climate Action Plan.
And at HKU, we are doing our best to benefit Hong Kong and the world.
Ranked number 1 for sustainability in Asia, our University has set up an Institute for Climate and Carbon Neutrality… that fosters pioneering, global research on climate change, supports local action, and educates a next generation of climate leaders.
From science to policy, across education and research, we are leading from the front.
I want to thank the Academy for awarding me this Honorary Fellowship. I accept it humbly on behalf of all my colleagues at HKU… and in the names of our students who are shaping the future.
After all, they are the ones who stand at the tipping point — and the ones whose futures are at stake.
May we all live in a more sustainable world in future.