The HKUST Institute for Emerging Market Studies (IEMS) provides thought leadership on issues facing businesses and policy makers in emerging markets. Building on the research strengths of the faculty at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, the Institute focuses its research and activities on the themes of (1) human capital, employment, and structural change; (2) innovation and entrepreneurship; (3) global economic integration; (4) financial development; (5) strategies, firms, and markets; (6) behavioural studies, and the Belt and Road Initiative.

The Institute supports world-class faculty research by providing funding, developing collaboration with research partners worldwide, and disseminating evidence-based insights to the academic and public policy communities through events, publications and online channels. 

Key Research Areas

Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)
China’s BRI is playing a transformative role in the future development of China and much of the world. Since 2017, IEMS is undertaking a multi-year BRI research program with support from the HKSAR government.
Human Capital, Employment and Structural Change
This research area discusses labor and employment policies, workforce upskilling and evolution of jobs, and implications for the future of labor demand and wage inequality in emerging markets.
Innovation and Entrepreneurship
This research area explores how market forces and policies may shape innovation development and entrepreneurship in emerging markets.
Global Economic Integration
IEMS seeks to provide insights into the complex concerns of emerging market economies in a rapidly changing global environment.

Key Research Projects

IEMS supports high-quality research through its annual IEMS Research Grant award. The Institute encourages collaborative proposals HKUST faculty and with research outside HKUST. 
Please find projects funded by the IEMS grants here


Executive Committee

Advisory Committee


Mr Jay Nibbe

Global Vice Chair of Tax, EY

Ms Kate Mackie

Global Brand, Marketing and Communications Leader Tax, EY

Ms Agnes Chan

Regional Managing Partner, HK & Macau, EY

Prof Nancy Ip

Chair Professor, Division of Life Science

Prof Kellee Tsai

Dean of Humanities and Social Science

Prof Kar Yan Tam

Dean of Business and Management