Youth I.D.E.A.S. 23

Governance and Constitutional Development

Young People’s Views on Togetherness

26 June, 2017



Hong Kong, a city with a long history of diversity, has recently witnessed serious controversy and confrontations over unequal economic development, livelihood issues and the changing political landscape. The deep-rooted problems come into views, which further intensify the fracture of the city.  The cohesion of the society is under great challenge.


Moreover, the city seems to be enveloped in a shroud of animosity.  Some people worry that the basic social values of the Hong Kong society are to be eroded, and the governance of the SAR Government, as well as the prospects of the Hong Kong society would be affected in the long run.


During the fifth term of the Hong Kong Special Administration Government chief executive election, the candidates coincidentally focused on connection, unity and back on track etc. in their election platforms, reflecting that the candidates and the society as a whole concerned about the importance of social cohesion and togetherness, with a hope that the new government could lead the society for a better future while bringing the spirit of help each other into full play.


Building social togetherness is not the work of one person but requires the cooperation of each member of the society.  It is also not a one single day work but takes a long time for fulfilment.   What do the young people think about social togetherness?  At a point when the new government just started operation, this research is conducted in an attempt to explore what the society could do to strengthen its cohesion for a greater sense of togetherness.


In conducting this research, data were collected for analysis through a random sampling telephone survey from April to June 2017 of 529 young people aged 15 to 34.  Four parallel discussion groups were conducted with a total of 17 young people in April and May.  At the same time, interviews with four experts or academics were conducted.



  1. Social together bring with concrete meaning, including keeping society moving on for a better prospect.  Yet, it is not a one single day work while it could be easily spoiled.  People should treasure it.
  2. The main elements for social together are some basic social values, such as trust and tolerance.  Yet, it is normal for any society to have diverse views.  The crucial point is shielding these social values in diversity.
  3. Young people are looking forward to having a society with a greater sense of social cohesion. The society and the government should go to any length to provide them with opportunities as many as possible to reinforce their confidence and energy, and give full play of their roles in building togetherness of the society.
  4. Increasing the transparency of the appointment process could help improve the public’s trust in the officials.
  5. There has been an increasing demand for political talent.  It is worth putting more effort into strengthening and developing the pool for political talent for Hong Kong’s society.
  6. The political appointment system is implemented without the parallel development of party politics.  This is unfavourable to cultivating a governance team with a common agenda.  This also intensifies the problem of talent shortage to fill the political team.
  7. The chief executive leads the governance team.  The chief executive should exert his/ her charisma to get a group of people who are competent to run the government.



  1. Expand the political appointment system to strengthen the nurturing of political talent.
  2. Establish a formal platform for the officials to share their visions.
  3. Enhance direct communication between the officials and the public.
  4. Ensure the governance experience of the officials could be retained and passed on.