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The midlife crisis among ‘hikikomori’


‘Hikikomori’ is often associated with lazy and introverted young people who stay at home and play video games all day. However, many ‘hikikomori’ in Japan are middle-aged who have not only withdrawn socially but also relied on their ageing parents financially. What are the challenges facing the society when middle-aged ‘hikikomori’ becomes more common? Does Hong Kong encounter similar problems?

Pros and cons of mandatory chemical castration for sex offenders


Sex crimes, especially sexual abuse of juveniles, are intolerable offences. In recent years, some countries have introduced ‘chemical castration’ as a form of punishment for sexual offenders, and some Hong Kong people urge the city to follow suit. This article discusses the scientific principles of chemical castration, as well as the developments and controversies of related legislation.

How to shorten the waiting time of driving tests?


In Hong Kong, the waiting time of road tests for driving license has become increasingly long due to the excess demand. Moreover, some driving test centres cannot always schedule road test appointments in office hours because of the acute shortage of driving examiners which would in turn further lengthen the waiting time. What can the Government learn from overseas experiences and improve the situation?

Market potential of online clothing rental service in Hong Kong


The development of the Internet has given rise to the popularity of ‘online clothing rental’ in some western countries. As more consumers embrace renting clothes over owning, does the online clothing rental service have huge potential market in Hong Kong? What are the challenges brought by its operational model?

Urban space experiment: Turning sidewalks into play streets


In addition to serving pedestrian and vehicles, streets can also be transformed into playgrounds where children can play safely and freely. In the UK, some people advocate temporary lane closures for creating ‘play streets’ in the communities. Many local councils even formulate policies to support it. A similar experiment has also been conducted in Hong Kong. How was it executed? And what was the outcome?

Mental health of journalists amid social unrest


In the recent clashes between police and protesters, many professionals such as social workers, ambulancemen and journalists witnessed the scenes of violence while performing their duties. Some might even become the targets of attacks. Mental health of these professionals, like others at the scene, warrants special attention. Comparing with other sectors, the workplace culture and inadequate organisational support of the journalism industry have hindered journalists from facing their psychological trauma, which make the problem particularly complicated.

New brewery challenge: The rise of young non-drinkers


Is the declining alcohol sales attributable to a ‘youth problem’? In recent years, there has been a prevailing global trend of staying away from alcoholic beverage among youth. This trend has caused some renowned brewers to adjust their marketing strategies and launch non-alcoholic beer. It has also prompted investors to open up alcohol-free bars.

The formula for success of BL dramas


Several BL (Boy’s Love) TV dramas which feature male-male romance, such as ‘Ossan’s Love’ and ‘Addicted’, have gone viral in Asia in recent years and have attracted a lot of ‘Fujoshi’, i.e. female audiences who enjoy fictional gay content. Why has BL culture become popular among ‘Fujoshi’? As Hong Kong TV dramas are not as impactful as before, how does the success of BL dramas inspire the industry?

The double-edged sword: Rethinking calls for birth control to save the planet


The fertility rates in most economically advanced regions, including Hong Kong, have been declining over the past few decades. Even though some governments are offering incentives to boost birth rates, the younger generation tends to have fewer children as they believe that relieving overpopulation can help combat global climate change. How do these two factors affect family planning of young couples?