Testing, Inspection and Certification (TIC) is a method of providing services to companies operating across various industrial verticals for the purpose of improving productivity, efficiency, and manufacturing process for manufacturers to meet with globally recognized standards, regulations, and policies set by governments to improve the quality of a product. Hence, Testing, Inspection and Certification service industry plays an important role in daily life of the Hong Kong community as well as in our external trade, e.g. medical testing support in the diagnosis of illnesses, and testing and inspection services for consumer products manufactured in Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta Region. It also provides certification services for management systems. According to statistics published by the Census and Statistics Department of the HKSAR Government in 2017, the value added of the industry was $15 billion in 2017 (or 0.5% of GDP). On the other hand, employment stood at 13960 persons in 2016 (or 0.4% of total employment), increased by 2.4% from 18280 persons in 2017. These substantial and increasing figures indicated that there was continuous growth of the TIC industry because of its important role in the daily life of the Hong Kong community and in external trade. Although there is no further detailed explanation of these professionals’ requirements, it acknowledges that technical knowledge and skills are essential to support the development of the TIC Industry to cope with the manpower demand. The major sources to supply the manpower or professionals should be the higher education institutes. Hence, there is a need to review the job competency required by the TIC stakeholders, the competency standards for TIC industry, the curriculum in higher education institutes in order to find out if there is skill mismatch in TIC.
In view of the importance of TIC, manpower demand, employment opportunities and the extent of science and engineering curriculum for undergraduate to support the testing, inspection and certification industry are discussed. The aims of the special issue discuss four main areas: testing, inspection and certification industry, curriculum design, competency and employability skills.