BECKY P.Y. LOO
B.A. (First Class Honours), Ph.D. (HK)
Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, UK (FAcSS)
Chang Jiang Scholar, Ministry of Education, PRC (長江學者講座教授)
Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (FCILT)
Fellow of the Hong Kong Society for Transportation Studies (FHKSTS)
Corresponding address: Room 1034, 10/F Jockey Club Tower, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR, China.
Office number: +852 39177024
Becky P.Y. Loo’s core research interests are sustainable transport, future cities, and smart technologies. She adopts a people-oriented and place-based approach in analysing pertinent issues related to smart cities, sustainability, regional transport infrastructure and development, transit-oriented development, walkable communities, and road safety. She is recognized for her research achievements both internationally and nationally. Becky is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, UK (FAcSS). Her walkability project received the Eastern Asia Society for Transportation Studies (EASTS) Outstanding Transportation Project Award 2019. Moreover, Becky is an Honorary Professor at University College London (UCL), UK and a Chang Jiang Scholar and Chair Professor conferred by the Ministry of Education, PRC (長江學者講座教授). Becky is known as “one of the foremost Asian scholars working in the area of infrastructure, transportation and urban transformation”. She is on the Stanford University Top 2% Scientists of the world based both on career-long and year-specific citations . Based on career-long citations, Becky was ranked among the Global Top 100 (91 out of more than 20,000 Top 2% scientists in 2020) within her sub-field of Logistics & Transportation. Within this sub-field in Hong Kong, she is the only non-engineering researcher and the only female who reached the Global Top 100. Becky has been listed as an Author by InCites Essential Science Indicators (ESI) based on global citation thresholds. Besides, she has previously received prestigious appointments as a Distinguished Visiting Scholar (DVS) at the University of Oxford (UK), a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the University of Birmingham (UK), and a Visiting Professor at the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) (PRC) (中國科學院客座研究員), Griffith University (Australia), the Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile (Chile), and the University of Montreal (Canada).
With a passion for excellence, Becky has continued to make advances throughout her academic studies and career. In 1989, she obtained Grade A for all her subjects in the Hong Kong A-level Examination (HKALE). In 1992, she received the Bachelor of Arts degree (major in Geography and minor in Economics) with First Class Honours from the University of Hong Kong (HKU). With the support of the Swire Scholarship and the Li Po Chun Scholarship, she completed her Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis (on transport and regional development) in 1997-1998. She then began her academic career at HKU. In 2006, she won the Outstanding Young Researcher Award. In 2008, she was awarded the Outstanding Teaching Award. In 2009, she became a Full Professor. From 2017 to 2020, she served as the first female Head of the Department of Geography since its establishment in 1931, making remarkable progress in advancing the Department despite unprecedented challenges. She has also made significant contributions to her alma mater as the Director of the Institute of Transport Studies, Founding Co-Director of the Joint Laboratory on Future Cities, and the Programme Director of the Master of Arts in Transport Policy and Planning. Becky has previously taken up the Associate Deanship of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Deputy Chairmanship of the Human Research Ethics Committee for Non-clinical Faculties, and Associate Deanship of the Graduate School.
With a commitment to serve and a vision to spearhead leading-edge academic research, she is the Founding Co-Editor-in-Chief of Travel Behaviour and Society. She took up the major responsibilities of journal scoping and finding the publisher, launching the journal, and getting it indexed in the Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI) and the Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI). Becky is also an Associate Editor of the Journal of Transport Geography handling manuscripts since 2014. Moreover, she is on the Editorial Boards of leading academic journals, including the International Journal of Sustainable Transportation, Journal of Transport and Land Use, Journal of Urban Technology, International Journal of Shipping and Transport Logistics, Municipal Engineer, Sustainable Cities and Society, Transportmetrica A: Transport Science, and 地理研究 (Geographical Research). As a leading international scholar, she has been invited to evaluate research grant applications for major research grant councils in Hong Kong, elsewhere in China, Europe, the Middle East, North America, and South America. Furthermore, she has served as an invited Research Grant Panel Member of the European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grants (for established and leading researchers pursuing ground-breaking and high-risk projects of about Euro 2.5 million per project), in four rounds. Beyond Hong Kong, she has served as an external assessor for recruitment/promotion for leading universities, including the University of Melbourne in Australia; Simon Fraser University in Canada; East China Normal University, Peking University, and Tsinghua University in mainland China; Hebrew University in Israel; University of Birmingham and Liverpool University in the UK; the National University of Singapore in Singapore, and the University of Alabama and John Hopkins University in the USA, among others. Her research postgraduate students have included Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS), HKU Presidential PhD Scholarship (HKU-PS), and University Postgraduate Fellowship (UPF) awardees. Her PhD graduate has obtained the prestigious Research Grant Council Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme (PDFS) award.
Becky has taken three intermittent career breaks from 2004 to 2009 for giving birth, breastfeeding, and taking care of her three children. While maintaining a balanced family and work life, she is keen to contribute to the betterment of society through dedicated unpaid services. Her services to geographical education and the transport profession included serving as the Chairperson of the Hong Kong Geographical Association (HKGA), President of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in Hong Kong (CILTHK), Vice-Chairperson of the Commission on Transport and Geography of the International Geographical Union (IGU), an International Vice-President of CILT International, and a Member of the Statistical Methods Committee (ABJ80) of the Transportation Research Board (TRB), (US) National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. She was a member of the winning teams of the Most Outstanding Community Partnership Award 2011 and the Outstanding Health Promotion Project Award 2015. In 2016, she was awarded the Pegasus Medal by CILT International. In 2017, she received the CILTHK President Award. To promote a healthier lifestyle, she has taken up the role of the Vice-President of the HKU Staff Association to promote work-life balance among staff.
In recognition of her outstanding contribution to the community, Becky has been appointed a Justice of the Peace (JP) by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government. Her current and past public services have included serving on the Appeal Tribunal Panel, the Assessment Panel of the Innovation and Technology Fund for Better Living, the Aviation Development and Three-runway System Advisory Committee, the Common Spatial Data Advisory Committee, the Harbourfront Commission, the Hong Kong Air Transport Licensing Authority, the Lantau Development Advisory Committee, the Road Safety Council, and the Transport Advisory Committee. She served for six years as an appointed member of the Board of Directors of the Ocean Park Corporation from 2011 to 2017. Being passionate about environmental conservation, she remains a Trustee of the Ocean Park Conservation Foundation. Moreover, being committed to the building of an inclusive society, she also serves on the Committee on Accessible Transport and Travel of the Hong Kong Society for Rehabilitation.