Shaping engineering in the Hong Kong region and beyond

CIBSE’s influence in Hong Kong is growing thanks to an extensive programme of activities. Alex Smith speaks to CIBSE Hong Kong chair Gary Chiang about groundbreaking collaborations and a new smart building guide that could have global significance

CIBSE’s Hong Kong Region (HKR) is one of the Institution’s biggest, with around 2,800 members. It hosts a wide range of activities, and publishes guidance and best-practice literature. It is also keen to promote CIBSE to the region and raise its professional profile.

A joint symposium took place in November, focused on the Greater Bay Area, and the annual CIBSE Hong Kong Awards are scheduled for 8 December. There was also a CIBSE Membership Cocktail Evening last month, for young engineers preparing for MCIBSE and CEng. The idea was for them to meet interviewers and other professionals, to gain advice and alleviate any fears they may have about the interview process.

Hong Kong chair Gary Chiang says the region is keen to attract more young engineers and the cocktail event is designed to encourage young engineers to gain chartership through CIBSE. ‘We invite 20-30 people who are ready to file their application. We reassure them by answering their questions directly, and dispelling any rumours they might have heard about the pass rate being low, or having to go the UK for the interview,’ says Chiang, who is principal manager – business development and support at CLP. The reception was also aimed at those who might be showing too much confidence. ‘Some people are naive and think the process is easy. We make it clear they need to prepare,’ says Chiang.

Another event aimed at promoting CIBSE to young people was a career-development session at the Department of Building Environment and Energy Engineering (BEEE), Hong Kong Polytechnic University.

Hong Kong Joint Symposium
The theme of last month’s symposium was ‘Shaping the future: Trend and insights for tomorrow’s technologies development in the Greater Bay Area’ – a regional megalopolis of around 71.2 million people, consisting of Hong Kong, Macao, and nine cities in South China. CIBSE is a co-organiser of the oneday event, alongside the Building Services Division of the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers, ASHRAE’s Hong Kong Chapter, and BEEE.

There were four sessions grouped around the themes of: codes and guidance; design and research; operation and application; and maintenance and performance. In addition, there were keynote speeches by CIBSE president-elect Fiona Cousins FCIBSE, Francis Mills, FCIBSE MASHRAE, and CIBSE CEO Ruth Carter, who was set to give the opening address as the Journal went to press.

There are three Project of the Year categories at the third CIBSE Hong Kong Awards: commercial/industry; public use building; and retrofit building. There is also a Facilities Management Team Award and Best Digital Innovation accolade.

A key goal of HKR is to raise CIBSE’s professional status in the region. One recent success was being recognised as a professional body by the Professional Management Services Authority, which regulates property management services in Hong Kong. This means that CIBSE HKR Members now meet some of the key criteria for becoming a licensed Property Management Practitioner (PMP) (Tier 1). To become a PMP (Tier 1), they just have to prove they have relevant property management work experience.

By law, every property in Hong Kong must be managed by a licensed PMP, who is responsible for all elements of the building, including customer service, safety, operation and finance. ‘They are the gatekeeper of the property, and will have the final say over the management of the property,’ says Chiang. As a result of the licence being awarded to CIBSE, Chiang says that the Hong Kong Region will offer more CPD sessions on facilities management, particularly around CIBSE new Guide M.

HKR’s latest guidance, due in early 2024, will be vital reading for PMAs. Best design practice in building intelligent services will show how building managers can integrate building services using the internet of things, and minimise energy use.

For more information on the CIBSE Hong Kong Region visit: CIBSE Hong Kong Region