Special Report  

Four-University Alliance Opens Industry-Academia Resource Center in Thailand

Vice President for International Affairs Luisa Shu-Ying Chang led a delegation of 13 high-level officials and faculty members from four elite national universities on an important mission to Thailand last December. The mission was organized to give Taiwan's academic community a deeper, on-the-ground understanding of the state of economic and trade conditions and industrial development in Thailand.

While in Thailand, the delegation attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the opening of an industry-academia resource center, and participated in a joint Taiwan-Thailand forum.

NTU joined National Taiwan Normal University, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, and National Cheng Kung University in forming an alliance to establish and operate the Taiwan-Thailand Resource Center for Economics, Trade, and Industry-Academia Cooperation on behalf of the Ministry of Education.

The university alliance decided to establish the center at the Taiwan Association of Thailand, which has served Taiwanese people and interests in Thailand for 70 years, in order to provide relevant services to Taiwanese businesspeople in Thailand. The mission of the new center will be to collect economic and trade data on Thailand and cultivate professionals in economics and trade; it is aimed to become an important base in Thailand for graduates of Taiwanese universities and graduate schools who seek opportunities in Thailand.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on December 9, 2017. Besides the university delegation and Chairperson Wen-Ping Chang of the Taiwan Association of Thailand, 15 honored guests took part in the ceremony, including Deputy Representative Puo-Suz Shih of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Thailand, President Yao-Lang Chang of Everclever Education Group, and Director General Patima Phanthapirat of the Chinese Association in Thailand.

The first Taiwan-Thailand Forum for Economics and Trade and Industry-Academia Cooperation was held on December 10. The forum addressed talent cultivation, industry upgrading, industry-academia cooperation, and fostering startup enterprises in the context of globalization and the Taiwanese government's New Southbound Policy. It also provided opportunities for Taiwan's academic community and Thailand's business community to engage in direct exchanges and gain a deeper understanding of market trends in Southeast Asia.

Eminent forum participants included Representative Chen-Yuan Tung of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Thailand as well asa number of Thai businesspeople and academics.

NTU's Deputy Vice President for International Affairs Bennett Fu expressed his hope that the new center would take advantage of the integration of the four universities' academic and talent pool to create a useful platform for Thai enterprises, explore opportunities for industry-academia cooperation, as well as prepare participating students of the four Taiwanese universities to become leaders in the development of markets in Thailand.

Following the forum, NTU’s Office of International Affairs (OIA) Director for Global Engagement Andrew Tsung and Manager Yi-Lun Tung attended the 2017 Conference of the Association of Southeast Asian Institutions of Higher Learning at Thailand's Naresuan University. While presenting his Country Report of Taiwan, Director Tsung discussed NTU's pioneering success in international exchanges and promoted the "power of partnerships" approach.