Pauline is a teacher, researcher and practitioner in organizational change, collaborative action research, family therapy, intervention research, and translational research. Her primary research interest is to forge collaborative relationship with different stakeholders to conduct innovative research for creating new knowledge to solve highly complex social and health problems. With Professor Donald Schon of MIT in 2000, Pauline developed a groundbreaking theory to explain how experienced practitioners learn new knowledge to promote novel organizational changes.
Recently, Pauline has transferred her expertise to develop new knowledge for organizational changes to the field of public health. In 2009-2011, she received a GRF grant to lead a high quality multi-disciplinary team to develop and validate a first of its kind of a family-based model to prevent adolescent obesity epidemic in HK. In 2011, Having been awarded as a distinguished Fulbright Senior Scholar, Pauline had spent one academic year at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis. During this year, she had expanded her research focus from a familial approach to a social determinants-based prevention model for adolescent obesity. In addition, she collaborated with Prof. Ross Brownson and other world-renowned faculty members of Prevention Research Center of WU to explore strategic plans to introduce a new discipline, the dissemination and implementation science, to China. In 2014 , Pauline formed a cross-disciplinary international research team, consisting academics from Stanford University, Washington University in SL, Tongji Medical School, and the HK Polytechnic University to implement a first of its kind research on internet-based intervention for prevention of adolescent obesity in Shanghai. Another significant research milestone was to secure a R21 grant from the National Institute of Health (US) to launch a cross- country research (2014-6) on the contextual factors that affect the dissemination of the evidence-based research and practice in cancer prevention. Since 2016, she has collaborated with Prof. Richard Wong, a renowned economics in labor and social mobility, and Prof Xiaogang Wu, an acclaimed sociologist in social research, to form a cross-disciplinary research team to advocate an early childhood investment research. This policy research has a dual focuses: to promote social mobility for young children coming from low-income families and to enhance productive aging for mature adults in Hong Kong.