The HKU professorships are thematic research groups that conduct research into arts practice and the creative professional field. In research projects and consortia, researchers often collaborate with other sectors where there is a need for a different perspective or for contributions from HKU based on the university’s own methods from the art and creative sector.
Led by a professor as head researcher, the professorships function as a research environment with scope for different sorts of researchers, including lecturer-researchers, makers/researchers and external researchers from the knowledge domain. Based on their own practice, they conduct doctoral or postdoc research, participate in projects or take part for the purpose of professionalisation.

In their research, the professorships consciously look for links to education and professional practice, and for collaborations with other themes and domains, such as sustainability, health and welfare, and the public domain. Take, for instance, the development of an artistic language for communicating in a different way about physical experiences, as took place in the IYANTWAY project.