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【#TeamSPHPC】Professor Roger Chung 鍾一諾教授

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我們熟悉的老師為甚麼會選擇這門學科?他們在工作以外有甚麼消閒活動、遇到壓力時怎樣應對?#TeamSPHPC 系列帶大家走到講桌後,了解他們在課堂以外的生活!

又是學者又是歌手的 #鍾一諾 助理教授(Roger)分享三件最影響他的歌、影、書作品,藝術和研究有甚麼共通點?Roger一直研究「健康不公平」情況,在新冠疫情期間又看到甚麼問題?

Question 1

What research areas are you interested in? Why would you step into them?

I am trained as a social epidemiologist with a focus on health equity research. I always think that it is not the lack of healthcare and technological advancement that is the problem, but the inequitable distribution of such resources. Some people benefit more from these advancements but some others much less.

Question 2

Is health inequality a serious challenge in Hong Kong?

My housing affordability study showed that it’s not only a matter of inequalities between the poor and the rich, but it also affects the so-called “middle class.” Health equity is not a dichotomous concept, but it’s a spectrum.

Question 3

Specifically, what kind of health inequalities are observed in time of COVID?

Even with relatively low COVID-19 incidence rate in the earlier days of the pandemic, we could still observe health inequalities being exacerbated. Why? Because it is easy to overlook the other social determinants of health when the goal of disease protection from COVID-19 became almost incontestable and the sole focus of public health policies and measures during a deadly pandemic. Continuous lockdown and social distancing policies harm the socially disadvantaged people more than the richer counterparts, and this should not be taken lightly.

Question 4

Did you encounter bottlenecks in your research/work? How did you unblock them?

Oh yes, especially when I started my academic career. It seems the field of public health is vast, but at the end of the day, you really need to ask what motivates you, what matters to you the most. To me, it’s contributing to solving the health inequalities issues domestically and internationally.

Question 5

How do you live a public health expert and professional singer at the same time?

I treat my family and my artistic interests with equal respect as my academic pursuit. They are why I am who I am today. I see my pursuit in academic and music under the same framework. In science, we are in search of the truth; and in art, we are in search of beauty, and not only in an aesthetic or technical sense, but also in the spirit of humanity. If you think of it that way, they are not necessarily so different. It’s like jazz and classical, unique but complementary. I can’t fathom living in a world that only pays respect to science but not art, or the other way around. At the end of the day, I want to leave something behind that leaves the world better with it than without it.

Question 6

Could you share and describe works that inspired you?

Too many… but if I have to choose one per medium…

• Movie: Groundhog Day, 1993

My first exposure to existentialism and the attitude of living every day to the fullest

Book: Hannah Arendt, “Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil”, 1964

The book that reminds me to stay awake and sober despite the turmoil of the world

Music: “Rhapsody in Blue” by George Gershwin, 1924

Blurring the line between jazz and classical, serves as a reminder to not be fixated with one certain perspective on things.

Question 7

If you could give an advice to your younger self at university, what would you say?

Keep the faith, and keep searching. You’re doing fine.