So Wai Chan (Suggie)

Cultural festival and arts management.

Suggie Chan is a highly motivated business-minded creative with a passion for culture and the arts. With over a decade of experience as an executive of a Hong Kong listed company, she is accustomed to organising events related to Marketing and Corporate Social Responsibility. She has strong interpersonal skills, an attention to detail and speaks English and Chinese (both Cantonese and Mandarin dialects).

Suggie obtained her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in the UK, after which she successfully completed a summer programme titled French Arts & Its Markets in France. More recently, she joined the Hong Kong cohort at Central Saint Martins. Here she honed her critical thinking skills and acquired the expertise needed to develop business models for arts and cultural organisations.

One activity that Suggie’s adores is dragon boat paddling: she is both a keen paddler and spectator. However, as the activity grows into a global sport, many of its ancient traditions are disappearing. This concerns Suggie. Indeed, it concerned her so much that she made exploring ways to preserve these traditions the focus of her thesis. One issue that Suggie identified is that many people are unaware that dragon boat paddling has traditions. As such, Suggie is investigating ways of using digitization and cultural promotion to foster greater awareness of them.

In her spare time, Suggie enriches her life through painting in acrylic. She also teaches art to young children.

 

The rapid development of dragon boat racing began after the Hong Kong Tourist Association organised an international dragon boat race to attract tourists in 1976. However, it would appear the culture and traditions associated with dragon boat racing are gradually disappearing since it has become a global water sport event. Nowadays, the majority of Hong Kong locals only know that the aim of the Dragon Boat Festival was to commemorate the villagers who tried to save Quyuan “屈原”, a patriotic poet (340–278 BC), by paddling the dragon boats and eating glutinous rice dumplings. In fact, people outside of the Chinese communities appear to know little about the traditional dragon boat culture beyond the fact that it is a water sport. Thus, the aim of the research which was conducted into the Hong Kong locals was to investigate the gap of their understanding between traditional dragon boat culture and modern dragon boat racing in order to further develop a business plan relating to cultural experience activities. It is expected that cultural experience activities impact positively on cultural aspects.