Professor Shen taught at the Computer Sciences Department of Purdue University (Indiana, USA) from 1969 to 1985. He also held visiting positions at Tsing Hua University (Taiwan, Republic of China) and IBM (California, USA) during that period. He joined the Micro-electronics and Computer Technology Corp. (MCC; Texas, USA), a research consortium supported by 20 major US computer companies, in 1985, to work on problems related to large-scale software systems development. He later directed the company's Software Technology Program, which had about 60 professionals and support personnel.
Professor Shen joined HKUST in 1990 as Founding Head of the Computer Science Department and served in that position until 1995. He also served as Director of HKUST's Sino Software Research Center from 1992 to 1995, during which time he founded Hong Kong Supernet Limited, the first licensed commercial Internet service provider in Hong Kong. Supernet was the largest service provider in Hong Kong when it was sold in 1996 and became Pacific Internet. For this work and the influence it had on the development of Hong Kong's Internet industry he received the Fok Ying Tung Special Contribution Award in 1998. Professor Shen was appointed Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at HKUST in 1996. He returned to teaching and research at the department in 1997. In 1999 he co-founded the Internet MPAS Limited (later renamed eCyberPay.com Limited) which developed a micro-payment technology to facilitate electronic commerce transactions of small amounts on the Web. The company was later acquired by the Vertex Group, a listed company in Hong Kong. From 2000 to 2003 Professor Shen was seconded by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to serve as Science Advisor, focusing on supporting the development of information technology and electronics industries in Hong Kong through the Innovation and Technology Commission. Professor Shen retired from HKUST at the end of June, 2010.
Professor Shen has served on the editorial boards of IEEE Software, IEEE Computer , and IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering. He served as a member of the Industry Department's Information Technology Committee from 1993 to 1998, and served on the Board of Directors of the Hong Kong Industrial Technology Centre Corporation from 1994 to 2000. He was appointed an Expert to assist the Commission of Inquiry on the New Airport in 1998 in their six-month investigation on the causes of the chaos when the new Hong Kong International Airport opened in July.
Professor Shen established the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Office in Hong Kong, focusing on Web internationalization issues. He was General Co-Chairman of the Tenth International World Wide Web Conference (WWW10) which was held in Hong Kong in May, 2001.
Professor Shen was a member of the International World Wide Web Conference Steering Committee (IW3C2, from 2000 to 2010) and served as its Chairman from 2006 to 2008, a member of the Board of Directors of Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI, from 2004 to 2010), and a member of ACM's Publications Board (from 2006). He is a founder of the Hong Kong Mandarin Bible Church (HKMBC) and is serving as an Elder.
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