12 July 2020

CUHK Appoints Professor Mai-har Sham as Pro-Vice-Chancellor



The Council of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has approved the appointment of Professor Mai-har Sham as Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the University for a period of three years from 1 August 2020, succeeding Professor Fanny M.C. Cheung. Professor Sham has also been appointed as Choh-Ming Li Professor of Biomedical Sciences since 2 July 2020. The University is deeply grateful to Professor Cheung for her exceptional contribution and service to the University in the past years as Pro-Vice-Chancellor. During her tenure, she dedicated herself to fostering a knowledge-driven research community at the University and facilitated the translation of research outputs to serve society and mankind. She also advocated gender equality and led in the provision of lactation facilities on campus.

Professor Sham completed her undergraduate and MPhil studies at CUHK in 1981 and 1983 respectively. She then obtained a scholarship from the Croucher Foundation to pursue her PhD in Biochemistry at the University of Cambridge, and had postdoctoral training in developmental genetics at the National Institute for Medical Research, UK. Before joining CUHK, she was Associate Vice-President (Research) and a Professor in the School of Biomedical Sciences at The University of Hong Kong (HKU). She had a portfolio covering inter-faculty research initiatives, research integrity and postgraduate education, major university initiatives on mainland China and international collaborations related to research, innovation and knowledge exchange. She assisted the university senior management team in recommending policies and strategies for enhancing HKU’s research capacity and performance. She had previously served as Assistant Dean (Research), Director of the Centre for Reproduction Development and Growth, and Head of the Department of Biochemistry in the Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, HKU.

Professor Sham said, “I’m most excited to return to my alma mater and to be a part of such a dynamic and innovative university. I look forward to the opportunity to make full use of my previous experience and collaborate with faculty, staff and students, towards the realisation of a shared vision of a better future for the University.”

Professor Mai-har Sham is a well-recognised developmental biologist in the region and internationally. Her research focuses on the molecular mechanisms of mammalian development and human congenital disorders, specifically on the roles of transcription and signalling factors in neural, sensory and craniofacial development. She is now serving on the Editorial Committee for the Annual Review on Genomics and Human Genetics. She has previously served as an editor for Developmental Biology, Frontiers of Autonomic Neuroscience, and PLoS One and as a reviewer for various journals in the fields of developmental biology, molecular biology and genetics. She has an excellent research grant record and the research projects she led obtained HK$20M in external competitive research grants.

Professor Mai-har Sham
Professor Mai-har Sham