City University of Hong Kong broke with traditional design to produce an eye-catching report in a square format instead of the more usual A4 size. The university's bright and innovative report, which makes excellent use of different type faces and stunning colour, was awarded silver in the non-profit making and charitable organisations category. The presentation of the award follows the university's phenomenal success for its 1996-97 annual report, which won the grand prize in the international category at the 12th annual report awards for the world's best annual reports, according to Professor Wong Yuk-shan, vice- president in charge of institutional advancement at the university. That publication also took a gold award in the educational facilities category, a silver award in the non-profit organisations category and a finalist award for its written text at the gala ceremony in New York. Professor Wong supervises the university's publications office, which coordinates the editing and printing of the annual report. 'Our intention is to make the report not only an ordinary report, providing data and statistics,' he said. 'We want to make it a more lively and innovative report which will reflect the pulse of the university during the past year.' The judging panel highlighted City University's report in its comments on general presentation, saying it was one of several 'to be commended for their overall performance, with very well-presented and innovative reports'. It also did 'exceptionally well' for its section covering employee relations. This year's report featured the university's 'Aurora' strategy, which stands for ambience for intellectual growth, undergraduate education, research, outreach, rewards and accountability. 'This is a five-year strategic development plan for the university,' Professor Wong said. 'So, instead of just producing a conventional annual report, we tried to ensure input which reflected different sectors within the university and our long-term goals.' In its report, the university explains the importance it places on Aurora: 'High education worldwide is undergoing rapid changes and society has new expectations of our graduates. 'We realise that, at the threshold of a new millennium, when we are already in a knowledge-based society, Hong Kong has to strive to develop its human resources and become a centre of excellence in higher education.' Professor Wong said while the annual report may be considered unconventional, it gave an excellent reflection of the university's work and future aspirations. The planning and interviews for the report were entirely done by the publications office through outside professional photographers were used. 'We changed to the square format two years ago. It's quite different and the bigger page size gives us more scope for innovative presentation and design,' he said. In future, however, the university may consider reverting to a more standard A4 format. About 4,000 copies of the report are produced for distribution within Hong Kong and internationally.