MoE Reviews Cheung Kong Scholars Programme

In September, the Chinese Ministry of Education (MoE) issued a new regulation on the management of the Cheung Kong Scholars Programme, which replaces the 2011 policy. The Cheung Kong Scholars Programme is a joint initiative established in 1998 between the MoE and the Li Kaixing Foundation. Today it provides funding for nearly 2,000 positions per year, with financial subsidies ranging from USD 15,000 – USD 52,000 a year, and is one of two flagship programs attracting Chinese returnees at a national level (the other being the Thousand Talents plan).


The new policy covers scholarship requirements in more detail, including that scholars must teach at least one subject at the undergraduate level and be involved in curriculum design, and that those with PhDs are preferred. It also provides more flexibility in attracting talent to China’s inland and western regions, excludes candidates who are already receiving other national subsidies or hold senior administrative positions, and specifies exit procedures for both voluntary exits and terminations. A great deal of emphasis has been placed on candidates’ “political orientation” and morality, following a number of incidents involving academic fraud, sexual harassment, and “inappropriate public expression”. 

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