HKSL Consultant Fung Sir introduces our research to the Deaf.

We are thrilled to announce that the Language Development Lab (LDL) has been awarded the Faculty Knowledge Exchange Award 2024 for our project titled “The Sound of Silence: A Journey Through Deaf Culture in Hong Kong.” This prestigious award recognizes outstanding research projects that demonstrate exceptional knowledge exchange between the University and the broader community.

Led by Youngah, the LDL team has been working collaboratively with various Deaf community organizations for the past few years. This project aimed to document, preserve, and promote Hong Kong Sign Language (HKSL), while also fostering understanding and inclusivity between the Deaf and hearing communities.

Highlights of the Project’s Impact:

  • Technological Advancement: Developed a HKSL detection model, laying the groundwork for future sign language detection systems.
  • Educational Impact: Fostered new hearing HKSL users through an inclusive HKSL curriculum for hearing students in collaboration with Deaf educators.
  • Social Impact: Created a comprehensive video archive of HKSL signs, combining naturalistic and structured data.
  • Cultural Impact: Supported the production of a documentary film, “Bridge of Signs,” exploring the experiences of the Deaf community and the vital role of HKSL in Deaf identity.
  • Welfare Impact: HKSL-trained volunteers provided essential first aid services at Deaf community sporting events.

Overall, this project has made significant strides in:

  • Documenting HKSL and its unique visual characteristics
  • Preserving HKSL and the intangible Deaf culture
  • Facilitating HKSL learning for hearing students
  • Promoting a sense of ownership and legitimacy of HKSL within the Deaf community
  • Bridging the communication gap between the Deaf and hearing communities

The LDL team is incredibly proud of this achievement and the positive impact this project has had on the Deaf community in Hong Kong. We are committed to continuing our research and outreach efforts to ensure the vibrancy and accessibility of HKSL.

Further details on the project, including its methodology, findings, and beneficiaries, can be found on the KE Awards webpageFaculty KE Awards


(In no particular order)

  • Dr Youngah DO
  • Dr Arthur THOMPSON
  • Dr Robert Marcelo SEVILLA
  • Wing Cheung Aaron CHIK
  • Lihui Frank TAN
  • Shuang ZHENG
  • Chuwen Joanna CHEN
  • Fei Peng Kevin CHEN
  • Pui Ching Rachel CHEN
  • Yu Hei Hannah CHUNG
  • Clarissa KI
  • Xin Olivia LIANG
  • Chui Yin Judy NG
  • Yu On Mavies NGAI
  • Wing Tsun Jeff YIP

The Department of Linguistics at HKU has collaborated with the following parties for this project (in no particular order):

  • Professional Sign Language Training Centre
  • Point Line Mean!
  • Hong Kong Arts Development Council
  • Hong Kong, China Sports Association of the Deaf
  • Hong Kong St John Ambulance