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2021 ICAS Award Result

The Society for Hong Kong Studies is proud to present the winners of the ICAS Best Article Prize in Global Hong Kong Studies 2021. The Society would also like to express our gratitude to IIAS and ICAS for making the article prize happen. Although this award started out on an experimental basis, we are proud to announce that it has been a great success and we received a total of 98 highly compettitve submissions. The result of the Prize is as follows:

Winner – Social Sciences Category

Samson Yuen, “Native-Place Networks and Political Mobilization: The Case of Post-Handover Hong Kong”, Modern China 47(5), 2021: 510-539.

Comment from Reading Committee member, Dr. Joseph Chan, HKU:
Samson Yuen’s carefully researched and rigorously argued article clearly demonstrates the rapid expansion of native-place associations and their cultural and political functions in the Hong Kong SAR, a phenomenon of which many people only have an impressionistic understanding at best. It explores in detail how the Chinese state has utilized the cultural identity of native-place associations to build up a pro-China network in Hong Kong. The findings fill an important gap in our understanding of brokerage politics under Chinese rule.

Winner – Humanities Category

Florence Mok, 2019, “Public Opinion Polls and Covert Colonialism in British Hong Kong”, China Information 33(1): 66-87.

Comment from Reading Committee member, Dr. Jeffrey Wasserstrom, UCI:

Florence Mok’s essay is an intriguing work that provides a careful assessment of an understudied phenomenon.  It explores the mechanism and process of surveillance and information collection, a level of history generally neglected by historians of government who tend to focus overly on the policy-making or the effect of policy – often just the rhetoric — paying little attention to how policy is actually carried out.  The article demonstrates Hong Kong’s colonial statecraft in the 1970s struggling to learn about the opinions of the masses while preventing the masses from knowing that their opinions actually mattered. The article also provides valuable insights to explain why the residents generally approved the government despite its colonial nature.


Total number of articles submitted: 98 (36 humanities, 62 social sciences)

Special thanks to Reading Committee Members:

Humanities Category

Dr. Elizabeth Sinn, University of Hong Kong
Dr. Jeffrey Wasserstrom, University of California, Irvine
Dr. Pang Laikwan, Chinese University of Hong Kong

Social Sciences Category
Dr. Joseph Chan, University of Hong Kong
Dr. Anita Chan, Australian National University
Dr. Tak-Wing Ngo, University of Macau