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Revised Outside Practice Regulations31 Mar, 2017

To:  All full time staff members

Dear Colleagues,

Revised Outside Practice Regulations

The Council has approved some revisions to the University’s policy and regulations on outside practice which will take effect from April 1, 2017.

2.     The revisions are made in the light of the recommendations of a recent review to ensure that the University’s policy and regulations are in line with the changing environment. It also addresses the Audit Committee’s request to look into the compliance of outside practice operations.

Professoriate Staff

3.     The revised Regulations Governing Outside Practice by Professoriate Staff can be viewed at: https://uis.hku.hk/uis/shbpro/pdf/outpracreg.pdf .  The key revisions are highlighted below:

(a) Outside practice is more clearly defined (paras 2 and 3) to include both paid and unpaid academic and professional activities. For instance, teaching self-funded courses within the University and/or in other education institutions, if remunerated should count as outside practice;

(b) Approval and recording of all outside practice activities should be made in advance with more details included in the application to increase transparency (paras 8 and 15);

(c) A 15% levy on non-clinical outside earnings will apply to annual outside practice earnings for the portion exceeding 20% of the professoriate staff member’s annual salary (para 11). The levy will apply to outside practice applications submitted on or after April 1, 2017;

(d) Disciplinary actions will be considered for non-compliance of outside practice regulations (para 24). Examples of these Disciplinary actions are shown in Annex I;

(e) The administrative arrangements for clinical outside practice applicable to Faculty of Dentistry and the Faculty of Medicine are more clearly spelt (para 20).

4.     Colleagues must ensure that their outside practice activities will not affect the discharge of their normal duties and that there is no conflict of interests involved. A table setting out the differentiation between research and scholarship, knowledge exchange, outside practice and academic activities not regarded as outside practice is appended in Annex II.  Regular reminders on the regulations and reporting requirements will be issued by the Department/Faculty/University.  In case of doubt, colleagues may consult the Human Resource Section (see para 7 below) or the relevant approving authority as set out in para 5 of the regulations.  A review will be undertaken a year after implementation to ensure consistent practice among the Faculties on the classification of unpaid outside practice activities.

5.     Applications for outside practice should, as usual, be made through the Outside Practice Management System (OPMS) in the HKU Portal prior to undertaken the outside practice activity (HKU Portal > Self Services > Finance & Enterprises Office > Outside Practice Management System). Modifications to the OPMS are being made in the light of the above revisions and the revised system will be in place by early April 2017. 

Non-professoriate and non-academic staff

6.    The General Policy Governing Outside Practice/Outside Work for non-professoriate and non-academic staff has also been revised. The key revision is that applications should be made to the respective Heads of Department in advance with more detailed information to be provided.   The revised regulations can be viewed at:   https://uis.hku.hk/uis/shbpro/pdf/outprac.pdf


7.     Enquiries may be addressed to the following:

(a) Outside practice and regulations:

Ms Christina Ng, Human Resource Section (tel: 2859 2422, email: cshdng@hku.hk ). 

 (b) Outside Practice Management System (OPMS):

Ms. Scarlett Lee of the Finance and Enterprises Office (tel: 3921 2541, email: outprac@fo.hku.hk ).


Professor Paul Tam
Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor

March 31, 2017

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