Background

Who We Are

Savantas was founded by a group of Hong Kong belongers with overseas experience who care deeply about Hong Kong.

As those who have lived abroad will know, Hong Kong people residing overseas derive the greatest pleasure banding together eating Hong Kong-style food and debating Hong Kong current affairs. Our group was born out of a passion to contribute what we have learned from our valuable experience of studying or working in one of the world’s most dynamic, innovative and technologically oriented growth areas in the U.S. to making Hong Kong a better place to live.

The humble beginnings of our group started from the feverish discussions between two public policy aficionados, Regina and Ronald, on Hong Kong’s political system and future directions. Regina and Ronald took the same course on “Comparative Democratic Development” taught by Professor Larry Diamond, the indefatigable Hoover Senior Fellow who trots the world studying different patterns of democracy and educating government leaders, politicians and students on what democracy is and is not, and what makes democracy work. In the course of attending the classes and reading the wide-ranging political science literature on democratic development, Regina and Ronald thought they found some of the answers to Hong Kong’s structural political problems.

Their passion was infectious and soon they were joined by William, Jonathan and Charles. Patrick, Walter and Alfred, the “grown-ups” of this group, all of whom are Hong Kong-origin scientists or executives with strong backgrounds in research, entrepreneurship, consulting, business and technology management fortified their enthusiasm by quickly adding new dimensions to the students’ discussions. Their enthusiasm spread to Hong Kong, and several Hong Kong residents with deep experience and expertise in economics, construction and property management decided to join them. Out of the initial, informal discussions on the campus of Stanford, a new think tank, Savantas Policy Institute, was born in 2006.

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