Women in Innovation Forum

Challenges vs Chances for Women in Innovation
7 March 2018 (Wednesday)
3 - 4:30 pm
Lam Woo Lecture Theater (LT-B), HKUST

The topic of the forum is “Challenges vs Chances for Women in Innovation”. The forum is open to our faculty, students, staff and secondary schools.

Keynote Speaker
Christina Zhang
Treasurer, Director of Corporate Strategy, DJI

Panel Discussion

Moderated by
Prof Kellee Tsai
Division Head and Chair Professor of Social Science, HKUST

Panel members
Christina Zhang
Treasurer, Director of Corporate Strategy, DJI
Angie Lau
Chief Executive Officer, Clover Group International Limited
Theodore Ma
Co-founder, CoCoon
Dr Sabrina Lin
Vice-President for Institutional Advancement, HKUST
Zarina Abdussalamova
Year 3, BEng Logistics Management & Engineering, HKUST
Talia Chan
Year 2, BEng Aerospace Engineering, HKUST

(First-come-first-served basis. Seating begins 2:45 pm)
The forum will also be live streamed at IWD@HKUST website


Co-Founder, Cocoon

Theodore MA

After graduating from Stanford in 2004, Theodore has been developing his family’s jewelry retail network and wholesale business and extending them to the online world. More recently, he has founded Cocoon, which operates a vibrant co-working space and supports startups in Hong Kong.

In his capacity has MaBelle’s Managing Director, Theodore designed and built an online fulfillment infrastructure and successfully integrated it into the group’s 100+ stores in Hong Kong and China. Customers can now seamlessly purchase any piece of jewellery from an inventory of over 6000 styles online and pick up their goods offline in under 2 days.

Online sales and online induced in-store sales from these websites have increased by double-digit percentages consistently over the past 6 years. The jewelry e-commerce platforms now reach customers in over 76 countries and 400 cities internationally.

In 2012, Theodore co-founded Born to Fly with his family. This company runs Cocoon, an incubator for startups and an idea exchange platform that aims to reignite the entrepreneurial spirit in Hong Kong and to stimulate the creation of innovative jobs.

Theodore and his team, over the past 5 years, created one of the largest physical community of entrepreneurs with over 21K connections, 1200 Cocoon alumni and while hosting 150+ events annually. In particular, Cocoon hosts monthly Pitch Nights and various events to bridge established business owners and investors with up-and-coming entrepreneurs. Collectively, members raised over $940 million HKD (USD120M) in funding through investors and referrals they met at Pitch Night.

Encouraged by the success of Cocoon’s startups, in 2016, Theodore and his partners launched Cocoon Ignite Ventures. With connected capital, Cocoon Ignite Venture invests in early stage entrepreneurs who have a unique vision of the new economy: transitioning from asset-based models to non-asset based, decentralized networks and business models.

CEO, Clover Group

Angie LAU

A graduate of the Diocesan Girls’ School, Angie began her career with a 17-year spell at the Shun Hing Group. She was eventually promoted to Managing Director of TDI Transportation Displays Int’l Ltd., the exclusive advertising concessionaire for many of the territories’ major outdoor advertising contracts, including Kai Tak International Airport and Kowloon-Canton Railway. She subsequently joined Commercial Radio, the trendsetter of local audio broadcast, where she contributed as General Manager.

In 2005, Angie answered the family calling and joined the Clover Group as CEO.

Voted by Forbes Asia as one of Asia’s Power Business Women 2014.
Chairwoman of The Hong Kong Intimate Apparel Industries’ Association Ltd 2017
Executive Committee Member of Sustainable Fashion Business Consortium (SFBC)
Director of Textile Council of Hong Kong
Member of Industry Training Advisory Committee of Qualification Framework (QF) – Fashion Industry
Fashion Industry Development Committee

Year 2, BEng Aerospace Engineering, HKUST

Talia CHAN

When I was young, I loved to watch Education Television for leisure. Once I encountered math problems, I would seek help from my dad. Since then, solving math problems has become one of my favorite activities. As I became older, I realised that math is fun, but engineering goes further to apply math and science to solve real life problems. Hence I aspire to become an engineer to serve our community by improving lifestyles through technology.

When I first told my friends and relatives that I had decided to study aerospace engineering in HKUST, most of them were shocked. They held stereotypes that engineering is a field fit for men; that engineers are dull and nerdy, and girls are not strong enough to handle the physical labor. However, these are not true. Engineers may be more competent than others in math and physics, but we are not dull. Women may be the minority in the engineering field, but we can be as successful as men. Therefore as an Engineering Student Ambassador, I hope to change how people view engineering, and to show people that women can be successful engineers as well.

Engineering Student Ambassador, 2017-18
Class of 2020, BEng Aerospace Engineering
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Secondary School: HKUGA College, Hong Kong

Year 3, BEng Logistics Management & Engineering, HKUST


Hi all, I am Zarina, an international student from Kazakhstan!

The most meaningful purpose of life for me is to be a useful member of the society. I would like to be focused on true values such as meaningful communications and world-class education. That is why I chose HKUST and I am very happy to be here.

By exploring different courses at HKUST, I realised that I am interested in making smart decisions, optimisation and efficiency. Therefore my choice of major is IELM.

After studying in the School of Engineering, I have gained considerable amount of experience which I would love to share with you and I hope my experience will help you!

Head Engineering Student Ambassador, 2018-19
Engineering Student Ambassador, 2016-17
Class of 2019, BEng Logistics Management & Engineering
Department of Industrial Engineering and Decision Analytics
Hometown: Kazakhstan
Secondary School: Republican Physics-Mathematical Boarding School for Intellectually Gifted Children named after O.Zhautykov, Kazakhstan

Christina ZHANG


Senior Director, Corporate Strategy & Communication, DJI

Christina Zhang is the treasurer and director of corporate strategy of DJI. Since joining DJI in late 2013, she has helped to direct cash management and fundraising to support the firm’s rapid expansion. Her work also includes liaising with potential industry partners and universities to expand application of unmanned aerial systems.

Before joining DJI, Christina was an audit manager at one of the big four accounting firms, where she spent almost six years conducting financial audits and appraising internal control and risks for Hong Kong listed companies. Christina holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree (Accounting Major) from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and she is a holder of Hong Kong Certified Public Accountant.

Prof. Kellee TSAI

Dean of Humanities & Social Science, HKUST

Kellee S. Tsai is Dean of Humanities & Social Science.  Prior to joining HKUST, Professor Tsai served as Vice Dean for Humanities and Social Science and Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University.  A scholar of contemporary Chinese politics and economic development, Tsai’s research addresses broader debates in comparative politics, the political economy of development, and the study of informal institutions and endogenous institutional change. She has published five books, including Back-Alley Banking: Private Entrepreneurs in China (Cornell University Press, 2002), Rural Industrialization and Non-Governmental Finance in Wenzhou (co-authored in Chinese, 山西经济出版社 2004), Japan and China in the World Political Economy (co-edited with Saadia Pekannen, Routledge, 2005), Capitalism without Democracy: The Private Sector in Contemporary China (Cornell University Press, 2007), and State Capitalism, Institutional Adaptation, and the Chinese Miracle (co-edited with Barry Naughton, Cambridge University Press 2015).  Her articles have appeared in journals such as China Journal, China Quarterly, Comparative Political Studies, Perspectives on Politics, World Development, and World Politics. Her current research concerns the local developmental implications of return migration, remittances and ethnic foreign direct investment in China and India.


Prof. Sabrina LIN

Adjunct Professor, Department of Information Systems, Business Statistics and Operations Management (ISOM), HKUST

Prior to joining HKUST, Sabrina held a number of executive positions in the IT sector. At Cisco Systems, these included Global Vice President, Commercial & Multinational Corporation Business (Asia Pacific, Japan & Greater China); Global Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer (Asia Pacific, Japan & Greater China); Managing Director, Strategy and Operations (Asia Pacific, Japan & Greater China). At Hewlett-Packard (HP), these included Executive Director, BRIC Strategy and Business Development, as well as R&D Director, Digital Information Management and Subscription Services. Sabrina was also co-founder of two start-up companies in Silicon Valley, one of which focused on commercialization of educational research, and another which provided professional information and services to enhance personal, social and business effectiveness.

A native of Hong Kong, Sabrina holds a master’s degree in statistics and a doctorate in psychology, both from Stanford University. Sabrina enjoys jogging and hiking and, as a mother of four children, exploring the world with her family.