PENANG, 12 Dec. 2012 - Representatives of the government and leading Asean universities gathered for the successful signing of a Cooperative Framework for ASEAN University Network/Southeast Asia Engineering Education Development Network (AUN/SEED) in Bangkok, Thailand, recently.
The signing of the framework became a new collaboration benchmark of the Asean region whereby all of the leading universities in each member country collaborates on the regional socioeconomic development with the involvement of the industry. This will subsequently lead to the strengthening of the Asean community.
Among the outputs obtained from the strategic meetings included efforts to increase human capital development particularly engineering lecturers and researchers, strengthening graduate level academic programme and developing a stronger network between ASEAN and Japan.
The effort was strengthened with the AUN/SEED-Net strategy in assigning several universities as hosts or regional hubs in the training of students and young staff from other universities which now serve as models to other academic networks.
The framework that was developed for the successful operation of the third phase of AUN/SEED framework will begin in March 2013 with the recognition of the efforts towards the restructuring and expansion of cooperation in the network.
Also in the third phase, AUN/SEED will be joined by seven new members which includes the University of Indonesia and Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember of Indonesia; Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and Universiti Putra Malaysia; Mindanao State University and Illigan Institute of Technology from the Philippines; and Kasetsart University and Thammasat University in Thailand.
Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) through the School of Materials and Mineral Resources (PPKBSM) was in the first phase of establishing AUN/SEED which served as a host institution for materials engineering disciplines as well as being a hub for engineering research materials.
With a sterling record that USM achieved in the first two phases, the institution was once again given the mandate to lead this new field separately which is also known as Engineering Materials and Resources.
USM Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Dato’ Omar Osman was present at the meeting which also serves as a platform for organising various discussions related to the AUN/SEED framework such as the organisation of conferences and seminars on an on-going basis, the distribution of research grants, scholarships for post-graduate and doctoral students and others.