April 18, 2018 — In commemorating World Book Day (April 23), the DAB conducted a telephone survey over the period of 15-28 March 2018 on reading habits in Hong Kong.
Summary of Findings:
On Hong Kong’s Reading Culture: Out of a total of 741 respondents (aged 18 or above), 40.3% do not read / do not have a habit of reading. Only about 10% of Hong Kong residents read for 3 hours or more per week. These findings indicate there is a lack of reading culture in Hong Kong. 55.75% find that Hong Kong has a somewhat to extremely unfriendly-reading culture.
On Hong Kong Readers’ Preferred Reading Format: In terms of what residents prefer when it comes to reading format, the survey has found residents preferring traditional print books over e-books, indicating that electronic book formats have yet to become mainstream at this point.
On Hong Kong Readers’ Reading Incentive: Self-improvement (38.0%) is the top reason to read for local readers as they believe reading helps them“grow in knowledge and improve their skills.”
On Hong Kong Public Libraries Services: Less than 45% (44.7%) of the respondents have used services provided by the Public Libraries in the past year; 36.9% know of the e-books lending services provided by Public Libraries; 36.1% said they were unable to use Public Library services as the libraries were closed when they visited.
Summary of Recommendations:
In order to cultivate and encourage the habit of reading, DAB proposes that the government take steps in:
- promoting the reading of traditional print books in ways such as setting up book kiosks, encouraging the donation of secondhand books and increasing the collections of Public Libraries.
- providing schools with additional funding to purchase more books and promote reading activities.
- lengthening the opening hours of Public Libraries to 11 PM; cancelling shortened weekends or holidays hours.
- promoting e-reading to encourage local residents read any time, any where (convenience).
Media Inquiries: DAB Spokesperson on Home Affairs and Legislative Councilor Lau Kwok Fan (9782 7408) and DAB Vice-Spokesperson on Home Affairs Pun Hau Man (9518 5806)