Professor Xia Yiji
Department of Biology

Professor Xia Yiji has made an outstanding contribution to the field of Biology both to the University and to the profession internationally. He has demonstrated exceptional performance in his research in the field of plant molecular biology before and after joining the University in 2009. Highlights include his distinguished record in securing external funding and having his work published and highly cited in high-impact journals.

In the past five years, Professor Xia has succeeded in all six Research Grants Council grant applications to support his research, including five consecutive General Research Fund projects and one Collaborative Research Fund (CRF) project, securing a cumulative sum of more than HK$13 million under rigorous assessment and against keen competition. He has proactively established multiple collaborative projects at the University and with other institutions. He is currently a Co-Principal Investigator for an Area-of-Excellence project and Co-Investigator for three CRF projects. He has also established collaborations with scientists in mainland China, and is a Co-Investigator for projects in the 973 Programme, which is China's national keystone basic research programme, and the National Natural Science Foundation of China.

The scholarly record of Professor Xia reflects his great potential and capability to build a strong research team and to produce high quality research outputs. Professor Xia has published over 40 research articles and many of them are in prestigious journals such as Nature, PNAS, Plant Cell, EMBO Journal, Plant Journal and Plant Physiology, earning a very high citation count of over 4,200. He has also devoted great efforts to incorporate knowledge from recent research findings into his teaching in order to keep his students informed of the latest cutting-edge technology and information.

In the light of Professor Xia’s excellent achievements in the field of plant molecular biology, including establishing and maintaining a top quality research team and setting up multiple research programmes, the Selection Committee recommends him for the President’s Award for Outstanding Performance in Scholarly Work.