Research Experts |

Research Experts

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic & Research)

Professor Brian Imrie is Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic and Research) at KDU Penang University College. He graduated with a PhD (Marketing from the University of Otago in New Zealand. He has published in a number of internationally peer reviewed journals and conference proceedings in the field of Marketing. His research interests have explored the cultural influence upon service quality evaluation, tribal marketing, consumer behaviour, and customer relationship management. Due to the theory building characteristics of much of his research he has a stated preference for qualitative and mixed method approaches. He is currently supervising two (2) PhD students. The first study models the attributes of exporting entrepreneurs in a SME context, while another study examines how marketing communication influences child obesity.

Before joining as lecturer in KDU Penang University College, in the School of Engineering, Computing, and Built Environment, Dr. Chuah Hun Guan was an engineer who was involved in mechanical machine design and product manufacturing production activities. Now, he predominantly teaches computer modeling and design subjects for the Mechanical Engineering programme. Completed his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Universiti Sains Malaysia in 2013, Dr Chuah’s research activities focus upon the study of the relationship between the mechanical testing method, surface properties and the mechanical bahaviour of materials. The modelling of mechanical behaviour and friction interface is attained via both analytical analysis and experimental work. His other research areas are concerned with the material dislocation for small scale indentation particularly for metal materials and also the investigation of the change in the micro structure and material property.

Dr. Gomesh Nair is the Head of Centre for Research and Innovation at KDU Penang University College. Dr. Gomesh Nair joined KDU Penang University College in April 2016 as a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Engineering. He has more than 8 years of experience serving the public university in teaching, administration and research work prior to joining KDU Penang University College. Dr. Gomesh Nair has received numerous national, international and excellence in research award from prestigious exhibitions such as ITEX, MTE, i-ENVEX, I-INOVA, BioMALAYSIA, PECIPTA, British Innovation Show (BIS) and Seoul International Invention Fair (SIFF). He obtained his Ph.D. in 2015 from Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP) in the area of Solar Cell. Dr. Gomesh Nair’s research interest include Solar and wind energy research and electrical machine design. He has authored and co-authored more than 100 research papers as well as books and won more than 100 medals in many distinguished product exhibitions in national as well as international events. He is a Chartered Engineer (CENG) in the Engineering Council, UK, a member of The Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET), UK, and a Senior member of IEEE, US. He has supervised postgraduates and more than 40 undergraduates’ projects into completion. He has acquired a number of government grants accumulating up to RM 1.5 Million. He currently administers the Research, Postgraduate, and Student Entrepreneurship programmes at KDU Penang University College.

Dr Irhanida has been a Senior Lecturer in KDU Penang University College’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts since 2009. She has a background in Town and Country Planning and earned her undergraduate degree in this field. Within pursuing her postgraduate studies she focussed on Tourism and in 2008 graduated with a Master’s degree in Tourism Planning. She then went on to complete her PhD in the same field in 2010. Since completing her PhD studies Dr Irhanida has actively participated in tourism research projects with the Ministry of Tourism Malaysia as well as other tourism bodies.
Specialising in alternative tourism, Dr Irhanida views Event Tourism as an area of tourism that would benefit from academic development. According to her, events have grown to enormous proportions and now make a significant contribution to the tourism industry. Events attract tourists to many destinations, encourage investment, and create a destination’s image. Thus, it is important to evaluate the event’s quality as it influences the satisfaction and revisit intention of tourists visiting events and festivals in Penang. This is to ensure a continued supply of tourists, subsequently boosting the local economy. In her current research, quantitative research method is employed. The relationship among the quality, satisfaction and behavioural intention will be tested using Structural Equation Modelling (SEM). The results will guide non-profit and/or public organisations to carry out their mission and be a catalyst for community development.

Dr. J. Joshua Thomas has been with KDU University College Penang from 2002 and currently holds the position of Senior Lecturer of Department of Computing. He received his PhD in Intelligent Systems from Universiti Sains Malaysia. He is an active researcher who has focused his research on artificial intelligence Visualisation techniques within algorithms. The majority of his work is involved with optimization, scheduling and timetabling, data Visualisation, visual representation of the process, computational steering through visual cues and tune algorithmic parameters while the process runs. His work involves experimental research/software prototypes combining optimization with visualization. His current focus is on Big-Data Visual Analytics and its applications. He has published Book Chapters, Journals and Conference proceedings. URL: Google Scholar:  He is serving as journal reviewer for renowned international journals from Elsevier and technical committee for international IEEE, LNCS conferences.


Dr. Khoo Hee Kooi joined KDU Penang University College in 2013, as a lecturer in the Department of Computing, School of Engineering, Computing and Built Environment. He received his Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in 2013 from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), in the field of Computational Intelligence. His previous career was as a Research Officer in USM. There were several government research projects conducted. His main research projects were funded by MOSTI's eScience fund and USM's Research University (RU) grants. These projects involved the research work on image analysis, feature extraction, segmentation and classification.

Dr Khoo’s research focus has been upon visual data since his postgraduate studies commenced in 2008.   He has made a contribution to knowledge in this domain, with results being published internationally, principally within IEEE and InTech Open. This solid foundation of academic endeavor has enabled the research to be taken another step forward, into the area of object recognition. His current research involves the study of an object in terms of its physical appearances, its characteristics and the relationships between the sub-object materials. The research work includes algorithm design, image and video processing, graphics renderings, artificial intelligence and machine learning.


Dr Low Chee Soon is a Senior Lecturer within the Centre for Pre-University Studies at KDU Penang University College. He obtained his PhD in mathematics education from Universiti Sains Malaysia in 2016. His study primarily explored A-Level students’ flexibility and adaptivity via continual exposure to multiple-solution tasks and strategies. An accomplished academic lecturer, having previously received the Malaysian National prize for lecturing excellence, Dr Low’s research currently focusses on the effective teaching of Mathematics. Students’ failures in mathematical attempts have been largely attributed to conceptual and procedural knowledge. Relatively little academic focus has been directed towards understanding the possible effects of students perceptual flexibility in establishing connections with learned concepts and procedures. It is arguable from the perceptual perspectives of Gestalt psychology that students’ perceptions of mathematical elements may determine their connections with some concepts, but not others, thus their choice of solution. This line of research may shed light on the importance of understanding not only the students’ conceptual and procedural knowledge but their perceptual flexibility, namely the ability to reconfigure their perceptual fields.

Dr. Low Khee Lam joined KDU Penang University College in 2016 in the role of Programme Leader for the Centre of Pre-University Studies.  Dr. Low received his PhD in Applied Physics from Universiti Sains Malaysia in year 2011. His doctorate research focused on investigating the characteristics of photonic crystals. Photonic crystal is an artificial material. It is composed by a periodic dielectric, metal- dielectric or even superconductor microstructures or nanostructures. It can be used to control and manipulate light flow. Dr Low has observed that the current calculation method is limited to frequencies independent materials. Consequently, his research is focused on developing a new calculation model that will be used to understand the characteristics of the photonic crystal.

Dr Ng Hee Song joined KDU Penang University College in 2009 and is the Programme Leader of Department of Business. He received his PhD in Management from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) in 2016. Prior to joining the education sector, Dr Ng worked for manufacturing firms specialising in engineering components and the automobile industry. His current research interest areas include leadership, work values, small and medium sized enterprises and entrepreneurship. Currently his research plan is to complete a research paper on ‘Entrepreneurial Intention amongst Graduates in Private Institutions’, while continuing to publish in ‘The Roles of Transformational Leadership, Entrepreneurial Competence, and Technical Competence on Enterprise Success of Owner-Managed SMEs’.

Dr. Sim Hock Kheng is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Engineering, KDU Penang University College. Previously, he served as a Senior Lecturer and Programme Coordinator in a private university. He received his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Multimedia University in 2015. He has published numerous books, international journals and conference papers in his research area. Dr. Sim has completed his supervision with five postgraduate students. His research interests mainly include Quality Costing, Six Sigma methodology and Supplier selection and evaluation. Over the years, he has engaged in various industrial related projects by improving the quality and manufacturing performances. He worked closely with the industry from time to time in order to bring quality and productivity improvement in the manufacturing and service industry.

Dr. Sim is also a PSMB certified trainer and was recently appointed by the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) as a strategic planning committee member for initiative A2: Developing an integrated assessment which aims to foster graduates who are holistic, balanced and entrepreneurial in line with the National Education Philosophy under Malaysia Education Blueprint 2015 – 2025 (Higher Education). He will contribute in gap analysis and implementation of integrated assessment methodology among institutes of higher learning in Malaysia.

Dr Tan Lee Ooi is the Head of Department in Department of Mass Communication at KDU Penang University College. Prior to joining academia he was a journalist and has written on current issues for newspapers and the online media. He completed his PhD in National University of Singapore in 2013 focused on socio-anthropological of cultural and religious transformation of Chinese in Malaysia.  He is the author of Dinamik Ruang Siber dalam Gerakan Reformasi di Malaysia (The Dynamics of Cyberspace during the Reformasi Movement in Malaysia) published by Penerbit UKM (National University Press of Malaysia). This publication was based on a reworking of his MA thesis, which received the Best Thesis Award from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM). Currently, he is working on a research project about creative industries funded by the KDU Penang University College internal grant scheme. The research project aims to map the landscape of creative industries in Malaysia and identify the challenges in the field.

Dr Yeap Gik Hong, is the Head of School for the School of Engineering, Computing, and Built Environment. He received his PhD in Electronics Engineering in 2006 from The University of Hull, UK.  He has published a number of international peer-reviewed journal and conference papers in the areas of physics of semiconductor, robotics, renewable energy, industrial automation and electrical & electronic systems design. Moving forward, he plans to focus his research in the area of renewable energy involving solar and wind energy. The first step would be performing feasibility studies of the implementation of these two renewable sources at the new campus in Batu Kawan. Once the infrastructure is up then more extensive studies such as output capacity and system efficiency can be performed.