Dr. Thomas Yuen’s project on Digital Entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg funded by RGC


Dr. Thomas Yuen’s project on Digital Entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg funded by RGC


Project funded by Research Grant Council (2019-2020, Inter-Institutional Development Scheme): The Evolution of Digital Entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg

Principal Investigator: Dr. YUEN Wai Kee, Thomas (Assistant Professor, Department of Economics and Finance)

Funding period: 12 months

Amount awarded: HK$511,850


Digital Entrepreneurship, Financial Technology (FinTech) and Financial Regulation (FinReg) is about to change our society, economics and business ecosystem. To survive in the digital world, it is important to understand the evolution of these three areas. According to Dr. YUEN Wai Kee, Thomas, his project aims to provide a platform for knowledge sharing and development for Digital Entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg for students and staff of Hong Kong Shue Yan University and other local higher education institutions.


In an interview with the Shue Yan Newsletter, Dr. YUEN said under his project, distinguished overseas scholars will be invited to Hong Kong to present seminars on the key topics related to the evolution of digital entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg. There will be six seminars and an international conference in the funding period July 2020 – June 2021. All the events will be open to persons from other institutions and to members of the public.


“By equipping colleagues and other participants with knowledge of Digital Entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg, the project will improve research and enhance publications on these three areas.” Dr. YUEN said.


According to Dr. YUEN, the topics of the seminars and details of each topic are as follows:


(1) The new digital landscape of entrepreneurship – Digital Entrepreneurship brings new challenges, opportunities and changed the way creation being done. This topic intends to provide knowledge on the impact of this fast-growing digital driver of entrepreneurship on the transformation of the socioeconomic system, and information on how these changes can generate business opportunities.


(2) Entrepreneurship networks in the digital era – An entrepreneurship digital network is essential to the successful development of entrepreneurs. In recent years, there has been a growing adoption of digital platforms which positioning products and services within dynamic digital networks that connects among platforms, modules, and consumers. Entrepreneurial networks play an important role in exploring business opportunities and mobilizing resources. This topic aims to examine how the new form of entrepreneurial network operates within and across various digital platforms.


(3) Blockchain and smart contracts – Blockchain technology is one of the most important FinTech tools to feature information distribution and, consequently, to allow the FinTech environment to develop smart contracts. Recently, blockchain and smart contracts has received huge attention. Facing the wave of the FinTech revolution, it is important to understand how the decentralization of blockchain technology improves and reshapes the business model to handle the traditional issue of information asymmetry. This topic will inform participants how blockchain technology and smart contracts are remodelling the traditional business environment.


(4) Evaluation of artificial intelligence and machine learning in auto finance – Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are widely used to handle massive amounts of data in financial markets. In recent years, AI and machine learning has played a significant role in the FinTech landscape, such as in auto loans, auto financial evaluation, auto financial risk analysis, auto financial information exchange, and auto investment. As AI and machine learning are making more and more automatic financial decisions (for example, programme trading), there has been increasing discussion on the role of human judgment. This topic will provide participants with the knowledge to evaluate the financial predictions of artificial intelligence and machine learning so that humans can control the rapid advances in the automation of finance.


(5) The regulation of FinTech and disruptive innovation – The regulation of FinTech and disruptive innovation creates both opportunities and challenges for financial regulators, who are required to balance the promotion of innovation against ensuring that the markets function in a safe environment. It is widely recognized that such FinTech developments have many benefits that increase the provision of financial products. This topic will explore the different ways in which emerging technology in financial markets could be regulated without stifling innovation. Adopting appropriate regulatory measures in response to FinTech initiatives is of significant importance for Hong Kong to ensure it retains its position as a leading international financial centre.


(6) Promoting entrepreneurship by the regulation of crowdfunding – Crowdfunding provides an alternative method of raising finance for a project or new venture by raising money online from a large number of people. Hong Kong has not enacted specific legislation to deal with crowdfunding. Crowdfunding is instead regulated by various existing laws, such as the Securities and Futures Ordinance, the Money Lenders Ordinance, and the Companies Ordinance. In other jurisdictions, such as the United Kingdom, crowdfunding has caught the attention of financial regulators, and specific legislation has been enacted. This topic will explore whether regulatory inactivity could hinder the development of crowdfunding. It will also consider how entrepreneurial activity through crowdfunding could be benefitted by implementing specific legislation.



The international conference will provide academics and practitioners researchers with a channel to stimulate discussions of research experience and knowledge of The Evolution of Digital Entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg, according to Dr. YUEN.


“I believe the whole project will encourage colleagues in other disciplines within Shue Yan and other participants to learn about the evolution of digital entrepreneurship, FinTech and FinReg, and to apply this knowledge in their research projects.” Dr. YUEN said.


Dr. NG Chi Ho Mark, Assistant Professor of the Department of Business Administration, and Dr. LUI Chit-ying Wendy, Assistant Professor of the Department of Law and Business, Hong Kong Shue Yan University, are the Co-Investigators of the project.