The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) held the Hong Kong Chiu Chow Chamber of Commerce Ko Pui Shuen Gallery Opening Ceremony today, with many valuable ancient maps and classical science and technology-related rare books. The Library is also digitizing important collections which will allow people around the world to appreciate the works via the internet.
HKUST received a HK$3 million donation from Chairman of Kingrich Asia Holdings Limited Dr Ko Pui-shuen last year for the Library's Special Collections Gallery and University Archives project. The Library will digitize essential collections, and establish an electronic image management system and indexing and search system. In honor of Dr Ko's generosity, the multi-purpose display and reading area has been named the Hong Kong Chiu Chow Chamber of Commerce Ko Pui Shuen Gallery.
Guests attending the opening ceremony included Dr Ko Pui-shuen; the Honorable Professor Jao Tsung-I; Dr Chow Chun-kay, President of the Hong Kong Chiu Chow Chamber of Commerce; Honorable Presidents and Directors of the Hong Kong Chiu Chow Chamber of Commerce; and from HKUST, Prof Tony F Chan, HKUST President; Dr Eden Y Woon, Vice-President; Dr David Mole, Associate Provost; and Ms Diana Chan, University Librarian.
The Hong Kong Chiu Chow Chamber of Commerce Ko Pui Shuen Gallery, located on the first floor of the Library, will display special collection exhibits regularly. The reading area facilitates the users to access the reading materials. Gallery exhibits encompass precious antique maps of China and classical science and technology rare books, including the first map of China by Western cartographer Abraham Ortelius, and the original works by Galileo Galilei and Issac Newton, among others. These exhibits witness the business, cultural exchange and development in many countries over the past few centuries, which are of great research value in China and the West.
Chairman of Kingrich Asia Holdings Limited Dr Ko Pui-shuen said that the Library's Special Collections and University Archives project is a collaboration between HKUST and the Hong Kong Chiu Chow Chamber of Commerce to promote history, culture and education. The younger generation also needs to know about history, humanities and social studies as well as acquiring scientific and technological knowledge through their studies. Through this project, people in HKUST and friends from all around the world can easily access the University's valuable special collections.
HKUST President Prof Tony F Chan thanked Dr Ko for partnering with the University, to help boost education, religious and national studies. HKUST as an international research university, apart from promoting science, engineering and business management, but humanities and social sciences is of equal importance. The "Library's Special Collections and University Archives" combines culture and technology by storing and managing the precious collections through the digitalization of special collections.
University Librarian Ms Diana Chan said that the original maps formed a rare collection among China's universities. These precious and unique items have been digitized so that people can view them online. The "Antique Maps of China Collection" has more than 180 works drawn by famous European cartographers from the 16th-19th century. The "History of Science Collection" has more than 500 publications on technological development over the past 500 years in Europe. The entire digitization project is expected to be completed by September 2015.
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