HKBU Library
Home ›› Research Support ›› Digital Scholarship Services ›› Digital Scholarship Grant

A. Background

Digital scholarship is an area of research and teaching that uses digital technologies to extend the life of scholarly resources and create research tools, with a view to facilitating information sharing and new research findings. Sponsored by the University's Research Committee, the Digital Scholarship Grant aims to share the valuable scholarly resources academics creates or gathers throughout their research activities with the community. These primary resources, data, or academic information have a significant value beyond usage for the original research.

Sharing scholarly resources can contribute to the overall notability of the university via:

It can also benefit academia through:

B. Application Criteria

B1. Principal Investigators:

All full-time HKBU academics at the rank of Research Assistant Professor or above (including those from the practice track) are eligible to apply. Academics from all disciplines are welcome to submit applications. All Principal Investigators can hold only one Digital Scholarship Grant or Non-Grant project at a time.

B2. Eligible Projects:

The Grant supports projects that extend the life of scholarly resources and make their intellectual content openly accessible online, through the use of digital technology. Scholarly resources that contain substantial value to the research area can be supported, including original research data, manuscripts, photographs, audio-visual materials, digital objects, etc. on condition that these materials are not freely accessible on the web at the time of grant application. In all cases, these projects should be designed to create or enhance access to scholarly information; they should also facilitate sharing and exchange of knowledge in the scholarly community. All projects supported (fully or partially) by this Grant must have their websites developed and kept under the HKBU Library's web domain name, even after the Principal Investigator leaves the university.

Applications may be submitted for projects that address one or more of the following activities:

This grant may not be used for:

B3. Emphasis on Collaboration:

To ensure accuracy and consistency of data, usefulness of web applications, and the longevity of scholarly resources, this Grant only supports collaborative projects that incorporate expertise from both HKBU faculty and HKBU librarians. Interested colleagues should first consult with the Library to discuss the scope of work including an enhancement of dataset for database development, digitization standards and methodologies, user interface design, and database structure and functionalities.

C. Application Timeline

Call for applications for the Grant is usually announced once a year in September with deadline in November. If funding is still available after the First Round, a Clearing Round will be announced in December and closed in January of the following year.

First round: Accept applications between September 1st and November 30th
Clearing round: Only if funding is available

Application forms with all necessary documentation should be submitted to the Digital Initiatives and Research Cluster of the University Library at on or before the application deadlines. Proposals received after a deadline will be considered in the next round. In any case, you should expect to receive an email confirming receipt of your application within three working days.

Proposals are evaluated by a panel comprising of library professionals and representatives from the Research Committee. The recommended proposals are then sent to VPRD for final approval and endorsement.

C1. HKBU Digital Scholarship Grant Assessment Rubric

Criteria Exceeds Expectations
(3 points)
Meets Fully
(2 points)
(1 point)
(0 points)
Contributes to academia and/or the general public        
Budget, staffing and resource requests are well planned        
Organisation & description of project process is clear        
The project results in successful and sustainable outcomes        
Research data or material collection is rigorous and of a high quality        
(Last updated March 1, 2017)

The application form can be downloaded from here: Download (.docx)

D. Budget

Maximum funding for each supported project is HK$ 100,000. Budget items can include (1) Staff Salaries and Fringe Benefits; (2) Technical Resources and Services as needed; (3) Miscellaneous; and (4) Copyright Fees as needed. Travelling expenses and website launch events CANNOT be funded by the Grant.

D1. Staff Salaries and Fringe Benefits:

Principal Investigators may hire research assistants, project assistants, or student helpers on a short-term basis to help enhance the source materials for online access. Expected duties of these project staff may include data cleaning or enhancement, converting images to text using OCR technology, assigning subject-specific indexing data to materials, etc. Please consult the Library for input and guidance to the process.

Please refer to the latest pay scales that are provided on the PERS website. To hire research assistants, please refer to the "Payment Rates for Research Staff"; to hire project assistants, please refer to "Pay Structure for Non-teaching Staff". On top of the actual salary, medical cost (3% of salary) and employer's MPF contribution (5% of salary) should also be included in the budget.

D2. Technical Resources and Services:

The Library will provide IT and graphic design support, but in case the project scope is too large or too complicated for the Library to handle on its own, the Principal Investigator can hire outside technical services to design the system, on the condition that there is proper documentation for system specifications to ensure sustainability and system integration. The Grant can also be used to purchase software for website development or server service as needed.

D3. Miscellaneous:

Equipment such as computers, i-pads, tablets, printers, audio-visual equipment, etc. cannot be funded. The grant can support miscellaneous items such as stationery, computer paper, fax, postage, etc. with a cap at HK$ 2,000.

D4. Copyright Fees:

Part of the funding (with a cap at one-third of the total budget) can be used to subsidize copyright fees if necessary, but the Principal Investigator must submit written endorsement with the exact amount signed by copyright holders, along with the grant application form.

E. Accounting Arrangement

The Library will serve as the budget controller for all Digital Scholarship Grant projects. Principal Investigators are responsible for all hiring, out-sourcing, or purchasing procedures, but the expenses are charged through the specific account with the approval of the University Librarian. To make your claims, it is reminded that:

F. Project Duration and Completion

All projects are expected to start within three months of approval and finish within one year. An extension of the project duration for a maximum period of one additional year is possible upon the approval of the panel. The Principal Investigator must send an email to the Digital Initiatives and Research Cluster, providing justifications for extension and the new proposed deadline at least one month prior to the original due date.

At the completion of the project, the Principal Investigator is recommended to co-organize a launch event with the Library, promoting the website internally within the University or to the public. The event can be a small reception, a launch seminar, a press conference, etc. Any costs associated with the launch event should not be funded by this Grant.

All Principal Investigators are required to submit a brief completion report to the Digital Initiatives and Research Cluster within 6 months after the latest project deadline approved by the panel. If a Principal Investigator has any outstanding completion report, he/she cannot submit another application until the report is submitted.

The Library commits to host all projects for 5 years and will review and evaluate them afterwards. After 5-year hosting or the departure of the Principal Investigator from HKBU (whichever is the earlier), the Library has the discretion to continue to host the project, revamp it for enhancement, or take it down from the server depending on website usage and the Library's funding availability. In case the Library decides to take down a digital project, all original electronic files of the website will be sent to the Principal Investigator on request.

The report template can be downloaded from here: Download (.docx)

G. Project Record

Brief information of all funded projects can be found from Project Showcase. All application materials, completion reports, copyright documentations, etc. are uploaded on HKBU IRIMS managed by the Library, which can be accessed by the panel, the Library's senior management, the Research Committee, and VPRD as necessary.

First Date of Written: Sep 01, 2015
Last Updated: Sep 14, 2022

Approved Projects





2017/18 (2nd round):

2017/18 (1st round):

2016/17 (2nd round):

2016/17 (1st round):

2015/16 (2nd round):

2015/16 (1st round):


Pinterest         Instagram         Twitter      Facebook       YouTube
Copyright © 2022. Hong Kong Baptist University Library. All rights reserved.