ASTRI sets smart water data challenge to promote STEM education in Greater China

HONG KONG, Aug. 24, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI) has supported the International Mathematical Modelling Challenge (IM2C) to nurture STEM talent and innovative entrepreneurship for secondary school students in Hong Kong SAR and the rest of the Greater China region through problem setting, field studies, summer internships and presentation competitions. 

ASTRI CEO Hugh Chow welcomes IMMC students and teachers visiting ASTRI2019


ASTRI explains how mathematical modelling is applied in our technological innovations solving problems in 2018

Established by Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications (COMAP, USA) and NeoUnion ESC Organization (NeoUnion, Hong Kong) in 2015, the IM2C is a global innovation contest for secondary school students to explore the application of mathematical modelling in real-life situations to solve problems of importance today. Water is an essential resource in our daily life. A smart water supply system which can monitor flaws in pipes and valves is key to sustainable and efficient water use in Hong Kong. Using ASTRI’s simulated scenarios from the real-life project on Smart Water Data Analysis, the Hong Kong team from Diocesan Girl’s School won the Outstanding Award for the 2020 IM2C Greater China Contest, which was featured in the July issue of the Newsletter of Hong Kong Laureate Forum. The problems set for the IM2C 2020 in Greater China covered a wide spectrum of issues including Smart Water Data Analysis, Credibility in Online News, Grid Frequency Response and Cyber Insurance Incentive Strategy; Flash Sale is used for the international challenge.

"Mathematical modelling provides the effective tool in applying logical thinking to solving the complex problems we face today," said Dr James Lei, ASTRI Senior Director of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analytics. "Through our support to the IM2C competition, field studies and the Advanced Innovation Program platform, ASTRI hopes to stimulate young people’s interest in STEM education and careers, and encourage them to take on the difficult challenges – an essential trait for technological innovation."

ASTRI Chief Executive Officer, Mr Hugh Chow said, "STEM education is becoming increasingly recognised as a key driver of opportunity. IM2C facilitates students to learn about the relevance of mathematical modelling to their studies as well as to their career including entrepreneurship – an important skill for the technology-driven economy of the future. ASTRI will continue to promote STEM education and applied research to prepare our young people to work in a world that is progressively competitive yet collaborative."

Mr Alfred Cheung, Director of IM2C Committee (Zhonghua) said: "We value ASTRI’s continuous support to the IM2C in promoting STEM education in Hong Kong and the Greater China region. With the implementation of the Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, Hong Kong will play an increasingly active role as the international hub of science and innovation. We thank ASTRI for the robust support and partnership to inspire more students to be engaged in international exchange in science and innovation."

The 2020 contest, the sixth IM2C, saw 650 teams from the Mainland, Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan compete – a tenfold increase since its establishment.

Notes to editors

  1. Photo 1: ASTRI CEO Hugh Chow welcomes students and teachers of International Mathematical Modelling Challenge visiting ASTRI to learn about our latest technologies.
  2. Photo 2: ASTRI explains how mathematical modelling is applied in our technological innovations solving problems of today.


The Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI) was founded by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region in 2000 with the mission of enhancing Hong Kong’s competitiveness in technology-based industries through applied research.

ASTRI’s research and development strategic focus covers five areas of applications: Smart City; Financial Technologies; Intelligent Manufacturing; Health Technologies; and Application Specific Integrated Circuits through its mandate as the Hong Kong branch of the Chinese National Engineering Research Centre. Our core competence in various areas is grouped under five technology divisions, namely Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analytics; Communications Technologies; Cybersecurity, Cryptography and Trusted Technologies; Integrated Circuits and Systems, and IoT and Sensors.

ASTRI seeks to develop technologies that address the needs of industries, institutions and communities in Hong Kong; as well as nurture talents to create economic value and societal impact. To date, ASTRI has transferred more than 750 technologies to the industry and owns more than 850 patents in the Mainland, the US and other countries. For further information, please visit

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