My Book for May: Soulware

Dear Colleagues,

My new book Soulware: The American Way in China’s Higher Education, published jointly today by Scrivener and Wiley, Massachusetts and New Jersey, respectively, is my fourth book since I joined CityU in 2008. It’s also the 17th international edition of all my books put together since 2008, including a theoretical one on reliability design. As with previous practice, the royalties from this book will be donated to student scholarships.

The content outlines improvements that universities need to note. One such improvement is the “Integration of Teaching and Research”. Universities should have a vision to lead, and to emphasise functionality by aligning with social and economic developments in order to find their niche.

Professors in higher education must engage in both teaching and problem-oriented research so that they can fulfill the role of transmitting, imparting and explicating knowledge, as well as investigating, creating, innovating and transferring knowledge. Teaching and research enrich and complement each other. Ideally, research should be embedded in learning, and the learning experience should feed into research. Teaching and research should explore real-life issues, enabling us to gain mastery of the world.

However, the reality is too many people want to dominate the discourse on education using political influence, regardless of whether they know anything about it or not. We need to know that university teaching and research is a serious profession, not to be taken as an auxiliary or supplementary job.

One realisation of this concept is Hong Kong’s first School of Data Science (SDSC) at CityU. The UGC-approved undergraduate programme offered by the School begins in September 2019. The use of data will revolutionise societal and economic development. For example, SDSC faculty plan to use big data to analyse tens of millions of legal judgments. The findings will be highly useful for legal practitioners and academics. We should aim at addressing real issues and ignoring empty talk. I look forward to seeing a new breed of dynamic data science professionals from CityU, under a university education environment that thrives on the integration of teaching and research.

My book Soulware: The American Way in China’s Higher Education is an evidence-based approach to tackling these issues.

I wish you all a pleasant summer.


Way Kuo
President and University Distinguished Professor