Annual Report 2005
 

AUN/SEED-Net at a Glance

Establishment of AUN/SEED-Net 23 April 2001
Duration of Project 5 years (March 2003-March 2008)
Number of Member Institutions in ASEAN 19 universities in 10 countries
Number of Japanese Supporting Universities 11 universities in Japan
Source of Fund Government of Japan through JICA and ASEAN Foundation
Number of Scholarships Awarded (as of March 2006) 261 (since 2001)
  Master's Degree Program 204 (since 2001)
  PhD Sandwich Program 32 (since 2003)
  PhD Program in Japan 25 (since 2002)
Number of Graduates (as of March 2006) 74 (since 2001)
Total Annual Funding from Japanese Government Approximately USD 3 million
JICA Team for AUN/SEED-Net: Chief Advisor Prof. Dr. Kazuo TSUTSUMI
AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat: Executive Director Assoc. Prof. Krisada Visavateeranon
 

Message from JICA Headquarters

AUN/SEED-Net is a unique project emerged at the time of hardship after the Asian Economic Crisis. It aims at materialization of an idea of human resources development, particularly for those in the field of engineering who will take root in education and contribute to their respective countries, through close collaboration and mutual trust among ASEAN countries and Japan.

To the world extent, the project is perhaps very rare in the sense that it ambitiously forms a network among prestigious engineering education institutions in respective countries in ASEAN and Japan , whilst developing human resources of the respective institutions and jointly tackling common problems in the region at the same time.

Japanese government and JICA have realized the importance of this project and have supported it with its full strength since the first establishment of the project. Nevertheless, it is my understanding that the success of the project today is the fruit of sincere and devoted effort of all people both from ASEAN and Japan who have greatly contributed to this Project.

It is my hope that ASEAN countries and Japan will flourish together, while respecting and making the best use of each country's diversity. For this end, the network fostered through the AUN/SEED-Net is becoming an invaluable asset to the region and ultimately to the world.

My feeling toward the project is overcome with deep emotion to witness the establishment of a distinct network and the prosperity of its activities year by year. On this occasion, I would like to express my sincere gratitude for all people concerned from each university, authorities, government and the Project who have devoted tremendous effort without sparing themselves to boost the development of this network.

In the end, I sincerely hope that all people concerned would continuously commit themselves to AUN/SEED-Net for the sake of brighter outlook of ASEAN countries and Japan , and wish that the network would grow in a successful and sustainable manner toward the future.

Mr. SUEMORI Mitsuru
Director General
Human Development Department
JICA Headquarters Office

 

Message from AUN Secretariat

AUN/SEED-Net is one of AUN's major sub-networks for cooperation in engineering education between ASEAN and Japan. Since its inception in April 2001 as an autonomous sub-network of the AUN, AUN/SEED-Net has become one of the great achievements among ASEAN's collaborative networking efforts. In particular, AUN/SEED-Net has been recognized by higher education institutions as a leading organization for the promotion of human resources development and student mobility as well as professional development in engineering education in ASEAN.

In addition, the network is being highlighted as a driving engine in enhancing the collaboration and solidarity between academics and professionals in the region through the cross-border and region-wide development of engineering education and research capabilities.

Each year more than 80 scholarships and collaborative research funds were awarded to students to further their study in various programmes. These include Master's degree programme, Doctoral degree sandwich programme, Doctoral degree programme in Japan, and other supporting programmes such as collaborative research programme, short-term visit programme in Japan, Japanese professors dispatch programme and a number of special activities. Among these awardees, about 100 students have graduated and returned to work in their respective countries. These students, I believe, have not only gained the knowledge in their specialized fields, but their advanced training experiences in Japan also lead to further cooperative relationships with this country at both personal and professional levels.

This fiscal year (2006) has come so close for the end of the first phase of the project. Time flies very fast. At the moment, we all have to think of how we could sustain the project or enable it to become more self-reliant. How could we enhance the international programme at the host institution, improve the alumni association, as well as publicize the network more widely? These are some of the priorities in our future plan of action.

Today, the AUN SEED-Net Secretariat has already prepared the work outline and concept paper for the phase II in order to meet these needs and continue the development of human resources, and importantly, create the centres of excellence in engineering in member countries. Next year, there will be many more challenges. With such new challenges, inputs and contributions from member countries and member institutions are required to move the network ahead. I am confident that our members will give us their hands to continue the full support to the network's activities.

In teaching, exchanging, research and all other domains of scholarship, the network has been an organization that can fulfill the dreams of students. As educators, it is our job to give students a chance, to educate, to inform and to motivate themselves to become active citizens in our community.

I will not leave here without saying that, the network has, today, geared itself up for its objectives because of the strong leadership of Associate Professor Dr. Krisada Visavateeranon, Executive Director of AUN/SEED-Net and the great efforts and contributions from his team. I am more confident that the AUN/SEED-Net will become an increasingly stronger network. We together will witness this in the near future.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Piniti Ratananukul
AUN Executive Director

 

Message from AUN/SEED-Net Chief Advisor

It has always been my great pleasure to observe the remarkable growth of the AUN/SEED-Net Project. We have been through a long period of hard efforts to lay basic groundwork for Project implementation. It is desirable and ideal that the JICA project would bring forth the outputs step by step and year by year whatever its objective and actually the AUN /SEED-Net Project has blossomed in successful way thanks to tremendous efforts of the persons that have been involved in the Project since its launching. Aiming at human resources development in engineering field and international standard of research capability in the region, the Project started from basic core programs namely scholarship programs for master's and doctoral degree, and made hard efforts in integrating the concepts of all other programs (i.e. visits, dispatches program, etc.) as the supporter for collaboration among member institutions and Japanese supporting universities. This streamlined structure has become a solid foundation for the Project strategy, and the Project itself has also become a good model for upgrading qualifications of academic staff.

After 2 years of preparatory stage in Year 2001-2002, the first phase of the Project started from Year 2003 and will end in Year 2008. We have reached the half way of the Project in Year 2005 and; therefore, the mid-term evaluation was conducted with satisfactory results. The evaluation team, comprising members from JICA head quarter accompanied by the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat, found that the significant numerical information on the AUN/SEED-Net students and graduates indicated the Project's accomplishment of a certain level of human resources development in engineering field in the region. During the visits to member institutions for the evaluation interviews, we were very pleased to observe that the Project had been recognized as an important mechanism for their improvement of educational and research capabilities, which we believe, at the end, will lead to the economic sustainability in the region.

On the other hand, some recommendations were proposed such as more development of the project strategy, redefining the matching among member institutions, strengthening alumni network, more publicity of the network, and cost sharing by member institutions/countries. In the remaining period of the current phase, we have to review and reconsider these recommendations in order to get outcomes effectively and make the transition smoothly to the expected next phase. As the proverb says, “ Rome was not built in a day”, I believe all of us are well aware that it is still a long way to go from now to reach the goal. Not only the latter half of the Project period, but we should also look forward to the future phases. We have a very important task in building up a strong academic network with, of course, linkage to industry and community so as to practically serve the actual needs of the region.

As the Project covers 19 institutions in 10 countries, the implementation to each member institution is rather limited; therefore so-called bilateral project should be helpful to the AUN /SEED-Net Project. In this regard, the cooperation with the projects that recently started in two member institutions, Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology and Gadjah Mada University , will be expected to achieve synergetic and fruitful results in the future.

In Year 2005, the former Executive Director, Professor Dr. Panitan Lukkunaprasit, terminated his term, to whom I would like to express my sincere thanks for his four years contribution and devotion to the Project including rather difficult preparatory stage.

I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all individuals, institutions and organizations concerned for their spirit of cooperation and commitment to the Project. I earnestly hope that we still keep such beautiful spirit and ownership with us in the future phases.

Prof. Dr. TSUTSUMI Kazuo
AUN/SEED-Net Chief Advisor

 

Message from AUN/SEED-Net Executive Director

It is my great honor to serve as Executive Director of AUN/SEED-Net, which is one of the greatest projects of academic cooperation between ASEAN countries and Japan.

Since the time of Prof. Dr. Panitan Lukkunaprasit who devoted himself for planting the seed of this Project, now the AUN/SEED-Net Project has rooted firmly in the ground of ASEAN with clear direction towards the Project's objectives. As the successor, it is my duty to look after and make the Project grow fruitfully.

From the Project's mid-term evaluation in 2005, it is found that the Project has been contributing to academic and economic development of the ASEAN region by enhancement of Member Institutions (MIs) in aspects of human resource, educational and research capacity, and networking with other MIs and Japanese Supporting Universities (JSUs) through many activities including master's and doctoral degree scholarship programs in ASEAN countries and Japan, collaborative research projects, as well as fieldwise seminars. After a few years, now some outputs of the Project can be observed. A hundred of graduated students return to contribute to engineering education of their countries while some continue their study at upper level in Japan or in same host institutions. A large number of collaborative research projects have been conducted by students and advisors every year, results of which have been presented in fieldwise seminars organized twice a year. Another major output of the Project is that ASEAN academic network has been established by human linkage through fieldwise seminars, Japanese professor dispatches to host institutions, short-term visits to Japanese supporting universities and member institutions.

While the initial phase of the AUN/SEED-Net Project is scheduled to end in March 2008, the Project's Steering Committee has come to the conclusion based on the mid-term evaluation that the Project should be sustained for another five years for the benefits of ASEAN. The future objectives and strategies have been set to further strengthen academic network and collaboration among ASEAN countries and with Japan, to enhance capacity of each member country in producing researchers and engineers who can support industrial development, to further develop educational and research capacity of MIs, especially in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, and to provide solutions of common issues of ASEAN industry and community through utilization of the academic network developed by the Project. To achieve these objectives and to sustain the network, however, all member countries shall support and contribute more to the network in terms of financial aid and administrative work, since the support from the Government of Japan through JICA alone would not be sufficient for future operation and sustainability of the AUN/SEED-Net Project. Therefore, the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat has been trying hard to obtain more contributions and commitments from other member countries and organizations for the sustainability of the Project.

Lastly, on behalf of AUN/SEED-Net, I would like to extend my gratefulness to JICA, ASEAN Secretariat, ASEAN Foundation, ASEAN University Network, Member Institutions and their governments, and other related organizations for kind supports and contributions given to the AUN/SEED-Net Project in the past years and hereafter. I hope that with commitment and partnership, the network of AUN/SEED-Net would keep growing for common benefits and solidarity of the ASEAN community.

Assoc. Prof. Krisada Visavateeranon
AUN/SEED-Net Executive Director

 

Background & Strategy

Background

For sustainable industrial development of ASEAN, the ASEAN University Network/Southeast Asia Engineering Education Development Network (AUN/SEED-Net) Project was established as an autonomous sub-network of the ASEAN University Network (AUN) in April 2001 from the initiatives of former Japanese Prime Ministers H.E. Mr. Hashimoto and Mr. Obuchi at the Japan-ASEAN Summit Meeting in 1997 and the ASEAN-Plus-Three Summit Meeting in 1999 respectively. The Project has been operated fully since 2003 with the aim at promoting human resources development in engineering in ASEAN, through the establishment of the network of 19 leading institutions from 10 ASEAN countries with the support of 11 leading Japanese Supporting Universities.

AUN/SEED-Net is mainly supported by the Japanese Government through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), and partially supported by the ASEAN Foundation. Activities are implemented by the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat with the support of the JICA Project for AUN/SEED-Net, now based at Chulalongkorn University, Thailand.

Objectives

  1. To activate internationally competitive personnel in leading engineering educational institutions in the region
    - for advancing academic cooperation on an equal footing;
    - for providing educational and technical assistance to less advanced engineering institutions in the region.
  2. To promote collaboration and solidarity between academics and professionals in the region through the cross-border and region-wise development of engineering education and research capabilities, corresponding to the founding principles of AUN.

Strategy & Concept Structure

To realize the goal, a consortium of graduate schools of engineering has been established to produce graduates with higher degrees of international standard by utilizing leading human resources from Member Institutions and Japanese Supporting Universities. Nine engineering fields have been identified and assigned to the nine Member Institution to act as the “regional hub” of each field in principle.

The Host Institution is responsible for training young graduates and teaching staff from other Member Institutions to acquire master’s degrees and doctoral degrees in a Sandwich Program with Japanese Supporting Universities. The Japanese Supporting Universities, headed by Field Coordinating University of each field, assist Host Institutions in “joint thesis research supervision” of AUN/SEED-Net students to upgrade the quality of research through the Collaborative Research Program and the Japanese Professors Dispatch Program. Others supporting programs are provided for academic excellence and networking, e.g. Short-Term Visit/Study Program in Japan, Short-Term Visit Program to Japan/within Member Institutions, Field-wise Seminars.

The concept structure of AUN/SEED-Net and the table of host fields with host institutions and field coordinating universities are shown below.

Concept Structure of AUN/SEED-Net Project Activities

Nine Engineering Fields & Respective Host Institutions

Chemical Engineering (ChE)
Environmental Engineering (EnvE)

DLSU
UP

Tokyo Institute of Technology
Tokyo Institute of Technology

Manufacturing Engineering (ManuE)
Materials Engineering (MatE)

UM
USM

Keio University
Toyohashi University of Technology

Civil Engineering (CE)
Electrical & Electronics Engineering (EEE)
Information & Communication Technology (ICT)

CU
CU
KMITL

Hokkaido University
Tokyo Institute of Technology
Tokai University

Mechanical & Aeronautical Engineering (ME/AE)
Geological Engineering (GeoE)

ITB(INA)

UGM

Toyohashi University of Technology
Kyushu University

(The two Singaporean Member Institutions, namely NTU and NUS, may host every engineering field.)

 

Master's Degree Program

In JFY2005, the success of the graduate program is greater than previous years with respect to the number of graduates. The 51 graduates are collective achievements of nine host institutions; CU, DLSU, ITB, KMITL, NTU, NUS, UGM, UM and USM. The number of graduates from the third batch increased dramatically compared to the 13 graduates in JFY2004.

Although most of this year master’s holders returned to their home country, 11 graduates have successfully won our scholarship to further study in PhD level in JFY2005. Four were awarded to pursue PhD degree in Sandwich program and seven were to study PhD in Japan.

With regard to recruitment for Master’s program 2005, 136 candidates from 13 member institutions (except CU and UM) applied for this program. ITC, NUOL & HUT, and HCMUT are the top three sending institutions with 25, 21 and 18 applicants respectively. Although the number of applicants decreased from JFY2004 (166), the number of applications increased by 13%. See Chart 1.

Chart 1: Number of applicants, applications and scholarships for JFY2005 by SI

 

189 applications from 136 applicants were submitted to all nine fields. The three most popular fields are ICT KMITL), EEE (CU) and EnvE (UP) with the number of applications of 30 (16%), 27 (14%) and 26 (13%) respectively. Out of 136 applicants, 73 were qualified and awarded. However, ten of these declined the offers for personal reasons, resulting in 63 master’s scholarships in JFY2005. Therefore, there are a total of 204 scholarships awarded since 2001.

In details, the JFY2005 awardees were recruited from 11 member institutions; namely, BUU(1), DLSU(2), HCMUT(7), HUT(8), ITB(7), ITC(10), NUOL(9), UGM(9), UP(3), UY(4), and YTU(3). They were allocated to 10 Host Institutions almost equally between 5 and 7 scholarships, except NTU who accepted only one student due to strict entry requirements. Details are summarized in Chart 2.

Chart 2: Number of applications VS scholarships for JFY2005 by HI

The Master’s Program JFY2006 was announced in October 2005, with the application deadline on 15 February 2006. The total number of applications received was 201 from 153 candidates. CE (CU), ME/AE (ITB) and ICT (KMITL) are top three popular fields with 36, 24 and 23 applications respectively. Compared to JFY2005, the number of applications and applicants increased by 6% and 12.5%. See Chart 3.

Chart 3: Total number of master's applications for JFY2006 by HI

 

Short Message from AUN/SEED-Net Master's Student

Through the AUN/SEED-Net program I was able to see the world through other people’s eyes, people of diverse beliefs and cultures. I am not only referring to my fellow scholars. I am referring to the different types of people that I have met throughout my entire stay here in University of Malaya. One can argue that I could have the same opportunity if I was somewhere else, but I believe that every experience that we have is unique. I believe that here, I am able to establish meaningful connections and networks that could last even after I finished my program. Being part of the academic community in my country, this will facilitate the strengthening of research endeavors and activities in my home university, the University of the Philippines.

I believe that I am here for a reason and a purpose, to learn as much as I can in order to give back and serve my country and all those who have been generous enough to educate me and provide for my studies. Saying thank you is not enough to express my gratitude and appreciation for the JICA AUN/SEED-Net program and to my mentors here in UM. The only way I think I can repay them is by also being generous with the talent God has given me and share the knowledge that I gained so far.

In retrospect, my first two semesters were spent burning my eyebrows studying and preparing for my lectures and exams. It was a bit hard at first since I was not used to attending lectures on Saturdays and Sundays but I guessed my efforts did pay off since I got some good results from my course work. Now I am doing my research fulltime and I am enjoying it a lot. I have been doing several research collaborations with other postgraduate students here. That is the bit that helps me establish networks for future collaboration. We have been helping each other in writing and publishing papers for international conferences and journals. I could say that I learnt and still have been learning a lot.

I am where I am supposed to be and my heart is at peace. As the Malaysians would say it: “Asians boleh!”; this means that we can do it! And I believe this with all of my heart.

From Mr. Jay Arre Toque from University of the Philippines-Diliman, now studying in master's level in the field of Manufacturing Engineering at University of Malaya since JFY2005

 

Doctoral Degree Sandwich Program

The Doctoral Degree Sandwich Program has been launched and started to accept students since JFY2003. Considering the year intake, the first batch of graduates was expected in JFY2005 (3-year period). Nevertheless, due to late start of all first-batch students, they will graduate late 2006, accordingly. The first PhD Sandwich student was scheduled to graduate in JFY2006 October).

In JFY2005, number of applicants increased slightly from JFY2004, namely from 30 to 32 candidates, with the number of applications of 33. Top three sending institutions are HCMUT & UGM (7 each), HUT (6) and UY (5). When looking at host institutions, the four most popular are DLSU (6), CU/CE (5), KMITL (5) and UM (5). See Chart 4.

Chart 4: PhD Sandwich Program JFY2005 by HI

Out of 32 candidates, 16 were selected. However, only 13 accepted the scholarships to study in seven fields, except EEE and ME/AE. Among 13 awardees, four were AUN/SEED-Net Master’s graduates. They continued their PhD study in the same field at the same host namely two in the field of ChE at DLSU, one in the field of ICT at KMITL and one in the field of MatE at USM.

In summary, 32 scholarships were granted over 3 years of implementation. Break-down details of number of applicants and awardees are shown in Chart 5.

Chart 5: PhD Sandwich applications VS scholarships JFY2003-2005

Besides the study at host institutions, short-term study in Japan is provided as part of the program, in order to give students opportunities to strengthen their capacity in research conducted at recognized Japanese Supporting Universities as well as add up academic and socio-cultural experiences beyond their home and host countries.

Out of 19 eligible students, 14 successfully took short-term study in Japan in JFY 2005, while the remaining 5 students were planning to make it in JFY2006. The period of proposed study was between 3 and 12 months. Seven students planned the maximum stay of 12 months, two each planned 10 months, 6 months and 3 months and one planned 9-month stay accordingly. The study started between September 2005 and March 2006. Chart 6 illustrates the number of students to make short-term study in Japan.

Chart 6 : Number of students to make short-term study in Japan by JSU

In October 2005, the PhD Sandwich Program for JFY2006 was announced. By the application deadline of 15 February 2006, 47 applications were received from 43 candidates. The highest number of applications belonged to ChE, namely 12 applications or 25%. Chart 7 here shows all application details. The number of applications increased by 38% from JFY2005 (34 applications).

Chart 7: Number of PhD Sandwich applications for JFY2006

 

Short Message from AUN/SEED-Net Doctoral Sandwich Student

I am now doing my research at Tokyo Institute of Technology (TIT), one of the best universities in Japan with very high reputation. All professors are fully committed to research activities and fully responsible for their jobs. I am very happy to be able to do my research in this highly regarded University. Not only academic that I have gained here but I have also experienced one of the most beautiful cultures in the world. Japan is quite different from Cambodia in almost every aspect, namely culture, food, life style, weather, and so on. I have faced some challenges during my stay in Japan at the beginning. Weather and language were on the frontline.

It was very cold when I put my feet onto Japanese soil at the first time since it was winter. For the language, fortunately, I have learned a little of Japanese language before I came here so I could overcome the challenge without much difficulty. In general, I am impressed by learning that the Japanese contribution to their society is tremendous. Their commitment to work for their country is so strong. This is probably the main driving force for Japan in developing their country and become one of the most prestigious countries in the world. Personally I have a great respect to Japanese people.

PhD Sandwich program is a unique program allowing student from member institution to study at leading university in ASEAN and Japan. Although it is a big challenge to get PhD degree in 3-year time with doing research at two institutions where well coordination between advisors and student is required, it does give a big chance to member institutions and member countries to strengthen their human resources in engineering fields by adding number of PhD holders through this program.

From Mr. Hak Sok Chea, former lecturer in Food Technology and Chemical Engineering at Institute of Technology of Cambodia, now a Doctoral Sandwich scholar in Chemical Engineering at De La Salle University since JFY2004

 

Doctoral Degree Program in Japan

The AUN/SEED-Net Doctoral Degree Program in Japan provides 9 scholarships annually for AUN/SEED-Net master's graduates or faculty staff of Member Institutions. For the JFY 2005, the Project received 38 applications and more than half of applicants are AUN/SEED-Net master's graduates. The scholarship awardees are 4 students from Indonesia in the fields of ManuE, ICT, EnvE, and CE; 3 from Vietnam in the fields of GeoE, ME/AE, and ChE; 1 from Cambodia in EEE, and 1 from the Philippines in MatE. All of successful candidates arrived in Japan during Sep 05 - Mar 06 according to academic calendar of respective Japanese universities. See Chart 8 and 9.

Chart 8: PhD in Japan scholarships JFY2002-2005

Chart 9: Awardees of PhD in Japan Program for JFY2005

For the JFY2006, AUN/SEED-Net received in total 45 applications which is the highest number since the first launch of the Program. See Chart 10.

Chart 10: Number of PhD in Japan applicants for JFY2006

In this JFY2005, 2 students graduated and received doctoral degrees from their respective Japanese universities. The first graduate of the Doctoral Degree Program in Japan is Mr. Lucas Donny Setijadji from UGM, who entered Kyushu University to study the doctoral program in geological engineering in October 2003 and graduated in September 2005, one year earlier than the scholarship period's end.

The other graduate under this Program is Ms. Leslie Joy Lanticse, faculty staff of UP who received the doctoral degree in materials engineering from Tokyo Institute of Technology at the end of March 2006.

 

Short Message from AUN/SEED-Net Doctoral Student in Japan

I came to Fukuoka in October 2003 to study a Doctoral course at the Department of Earth Resources Engineering, Kyushu University. My doctoral research program was officially part of the International Doctoral Course in Environmental System Engineering, a special course newly introduced in year 2002 organized by a school consortium of 5 major departments within the Graduate School of Engineering of Kyushu University. The course comprises course works and research and dissertation to be completed within a maximum three-year period. The requirements for finalizing our dissertation are to produce several publications in conferences, journals and etc., in which at least one is published at an international journal.

After finishing my study in October 2005 and looking back on what I have done and learned, I just realized that my life in Fukuoka was becoming the most productive period in my life. Not only to consider that I was very active in publishing papers, attending conferences and fieldworks in many countries and so on, but more importantly that so many things had been learned there and in overall I enjoyed such experience. There are of course many difficulties living in Japan , especially with language barrier. But I think we can solve such problems by understanding one point: we have to value the Japanese way.

I was very lucky to have a very nice supervisor team who really gave me opportunities to run my research and commit supports even with additional resources, such as expenses for fieldworks, analysis, international conferences, and several Japanese students who were assigned to support my research project. Our relationship still continues after my graduation, even is now getting stronger and bigger.

I wish all AUN/SEED-Net researchers also find counterparts and experience positive values during their interactions with other researchers in Japan an d ASEAN countries. Let us grow together for benefits of our society.

From Dr. Lucas Donny Satijadji, taking only two years from JFY2003-2005 to complete the doctoral study in Geological Engineering from Khushu University, now a factuly member of Gadjah Mada University

 

Doctoral Degree Program in Singapore

Although the project is supported by JICA for the initial period of five years (2003-2008), member institutions have been working very hard to bring about sustainability to the project after the end of the first phase. Considerable efforts have been made to achieve the need. More contribution from member countries was requested such as cost-sharing or scholarships.

In JFY2005, another program, named “Doctoral Degree Program in Singapore ”, emerged from the contribution from National University of Singapore (NUS). NUS agreed to offer cost-sharing of three scholarships per year for direct doctoral program in any engineering fields available there. The first launch would be for JFY2006 intake with expected announcement in May 2006.

The Secretariat is also planning to request from NTU the similar contribution.

 

Promotional Trip

Since its first launch in the latter half of JFY2002, the Promotional Trip Program has proved successful in the recruitment of qualified candidates for AUN/SEED-Net master's and PhD Sandwich Program. With the annual average quota of 315 person-nights approximately for all Host Institutions to visit other Member Institutions to promote their academic and research activities, the average number of candidates for AUN/SEED-Net Master's Degree Program has increased from 38.5 (JFY2001-2002) to 145.75 (JFY2003-2006), which shows the significant increase by more than 350% compared to the early stage in 2001-2002. The Program still continues in JFY2006 with slight decrease in term of person-nights; however, the number of candidates is still expected to stay at or even over the average due to the effectiveness of additional PR activities.

 

Collaborative Research Program

Aiming at high quality and international standard of thesis research of AUN/SEED-Net students, the Collaborative Research (CR) Program was first implemented in JFY2003. The concept of the Program focuses on a main research topic led by advisor at Host Institution, with related thesis research topic(s) of AUN/SEED-Net student(s), and academic input from Japanese co-advisor from Japanese Supporting Universities. Faculty staff of Non-Host Institutions, especially former advisors of AUN/SEED-Net students before they enter the Host Institutions, are also encouraged to get involved in CR activities.

The Program provides support for general research activities such as personal costs, travel expenses, experiments, equipments, consumables, reference books. In addition, paper presentation by AUN/SEED-Net students at international conferences or seminars can be supported under CR budget. For JFY2005, 100 CR projects, involving thesis research of 110 master's and 25 doctoral students, were approved with the total amount of support of US$470,000 approximately.

CE

CU

14

10

5

70,154

ChE

DLSU

13

20

5

70,699

EEE

CU

12

14

4

69,236

EnvE

UP

8

6

2

32,300

GeoE

UGM

5

15

2

46,862

ICT

KMITL

11

8

3

47,862

ManuE

UM

11

10

1

39,892

MatE

USM

12

10

2

40,840

ME/AE

ITB(INA)

14

17

1

52,464

Total

100

110

25

470,309

 

Special Equipment

In addition to Collaborative Research Program under which the budget can be spent for research activities such as personal costs, travel expenses, consumables, and small-scale equipment, the Special Equipment Program, implemented during JFY 2003-2005, provides these CR projects with extra budget to purchase large-scale equipment with the ceiling of US$45,000 approximately per each Host Institution. For JFY2005, which is the final year of the implementation, US$390,000 approximately were approved for the Program; however, some equipment items are still under procurement.

 

Japanese Professors Dispatch and Short-Term Visit to Japan

In JFY2005, AUN/SEED-Net supported 28 professors from Japanese Supporting Universities to visit Member Institutions under Japanese Professors Dispatch Program, and 38 faculty staff of Member Institutions to visit Japanese Supporting Universities under Short-term Visit Program to Japan . These two activities were designed to facilitate communication between Member Institutions and Japanese Supporting Universities to enhance research collaboration and joint supervision of AUN/SEED-Net students.

CE CU Hokkaido
3
21
5
35
ChE DLSU TIT
5
33
5
50
EEE CU TIT
1
6
2
15
EnvE UP TIT
0
0
3
15
GeoE UGM Kyushu
3
18
5
47
ICT KMITL Tokai
4
27
5
35
ManuE UM Keio
4
18
5
30
MatE USM TUT
5
24
5
35
ME/AE ITB(INA) TUT
3
18
3
24
Total
28
165
38
286
 

Short-Term Visit within Member Institutions

In addition to support for the above two activities which are mainly implemented by Host Institutions, AUN/SEED-Net also provides support for faculty staff of Non-Host Institutions to visit Host Institutions of respective fields for a period of 10-30 days in order to conduct experimental work and discuss future research collaboration. However, the actual number of participation in JFY2005 was only 9 despite the maximum quota of 27. The encouragement of active participation of Non-Host Institution, both from Non-Host and Host Institution sides, would be another key issue for the Project implementation in the next fiscal year.

CE
3
1 NUOL, 2 DLSU
CU
34
ChE
2
2 UGM
DLSU
18
EEE
 
EnvE
1
1 NUOL
UP
13
GeoE
3
1 ITC, 1USM, 1UP
UGM
34
ICT
 
ManuE
 
MatE
 
ME/AE
 
Total
9
 
99
 

Field-Wise Seminar

Following the previous years, the Field-wise Seminar Program in the JFY2005 was still actively participated by Member Institutions and Japanese Supporting Universities . The Program allows scholars concerned in each of 9 engineering fields to meet in order to share research experiences and discuss collaborative activities, so that the academic network can be created, enhanced, and sustained. The Field-wise Seminar will be organized twice a year; once at Host and once at Non-Host Institutions on rotation basis so as to broaden the Network. When the seminar is organized at Host Institution, AUN/SEED-Net students are expected to present their research progress; and when it is organized at Non-Host Institution, faculty staff of the Non-Host Institution, who are AUN/SEED-Net alumni in the respective field, are also encouraged to present their continued research or network activities.

For JFY2005, there were in total 17 Field-wise Seminars mainly organized in Thailand (5), Vietnam (4), and Malaysia (3). Some of these were also participated by industrial sector, and some were organized in conjunction with other international conferences (for examples, Regional Symposium on Chemical Engineering - RSCE 2005, International Conference on Manufacturing and Material Processing - ICMM 2006, etc.), which assisted in widening the Network to other academic society and industrial community.

CE
CU
1
Mar-06
Bangkok
3
30
ChE
DLSU
1
Sep-05
Manila
2
15
2
Nov-05
Hanoi
3
15
EEE
CU
1
Nov-05
Hanoi
3
13
2
Mar-05
Bangkok
3
14
EnvE
UP
1
Aug-05
Manila
4
15
2
Nov-05
Hanoi
4
15
GeoE
UGM
1
Jun-05
Phnom Penh
4
15
2
Dec-05
Bangkok
3
10
ICT
KMITL
1
Jul-05
Ho Chi Minh City
3
15
2
Feb-06
Bangkok
3
13
ManuE
UM
1
Oct-05
Bangkok
4
13
2
Mar-06
Kuala Lumpur
2
15
MatE
USM
1
May-05
Penang
3
15
2
Jan-06
Bandung
3
13
ME/AE
ITB(INA)
1
Sep-05
Kuala Lumpur
4
16
2
Feb-06
Bandung
3
12
 

Student Orientation and Monitoring

Orientation

Orientation is a must for new students but current students are always invited to join. The newcomers will learn more about the Project and its activities, regulations, supports and their responsibilities as well as to meet their contact persons at AUN/SEED-Net. Therefore, it is planned to be organized at all host institutions at least once a year, preferably in conjunction with monitoring of existing students.

Monitoring

Recognizing invaluable benefits earned from monitoring activity in the previous year toward project quality assurance, in JFY2005 the Secretariat set up a monitoring at every host institution in order to learn more complete opinions and facts from faculty staff as well as students.

Ten visits were made to conduct monitoring activities at all ten host institutions in JFY2005. The monitoring usually comprised two parts; first part with faculty staff and second part with students; with focus on students' academic progress and difficulties, considering that their graduation is key indicator that reflects success of the project.

Chart 11: Status of master's students by year of intake

Since status of all PhD Sandwich students by the end of JFY2005 remained ‘ studying ', only status of master's students was mentioned in this report. The chart above shows the overview of all awarded students under Master's Degree Program since the project started. By JFY2005, out of 204 scholars, 73 graduated, 121 were studying while two suspended and eight terminated. The main reasons of suspension and termination were personal or health problems and weak academic background.

Considering on-time graduations, the number of expected graduates in JFY2005 was 47 (from 2003 intake). Forty-six of them successfully completed their study in this year. Forty-one graduated within their scholarship period (87%), while five graduated after extension period (10%), but still within JFY2005. There was one extension case which was later suspended because of failure to complete the study in extended period due to thesis difficulties.

Besides, there are nine extended cases of JFY2002 to graduate in JFY2005. Six successfully graduated (two in JFY2004 and four in JFY2005) while one was suspended due to family problem and two were terminated for mental problem and weak academic background respectively.

There was one students from JFY2001 successfully graduated in JFY2005. Therefore, total number of graduates in JFY2005 was 51 as illustrated in the chart below.

Chart 12: Number of graduates JFY 2001-2005

Looking into the number of extension cases, there were six students requesting for extension of scholarships in JFY2005. All of them were of 2003 intake, thus 11% only. As mentioned earlier, five students successfully graduated and one was suspended. Compared to the previous year the number of extension requests decreased by 66% (from nine to six). This resulted from better student screening, more structured operation plus better knowledge and understanding of students to study at host institutions.

For the purpose of mid-term evaluation, publications of research papers by students were first gathered in JFY2005, considering that they could reflect not only performance of the students but also their recognition in academic societies at national and international level. Four types of publications were taken into account, namely national proceedings, international proceedings, national journal, and international journal.

During the project operation from JFY2001 – 2005, the number of papers published has reached 144 papers. 138 papers belonged to 57 master's students and 6 belonged to 3 doctoral sandwich students and 3 doctoral-in-Japan students. If categorized by field of study, ICT, ManuE and EEE had highest publication numbers of 29, 26 and 25 respectively. For type of publications, 75% is conference proceedings while the rest, 25%, is journal articles. Details are shown in the charts below.

Chart 13: Number of publications by field Chart 14: Number of publications by type

Although the publication information was first collected for a specific purpose of mid-term evaluation, the collection would be certainly carried on in the successive years as a mean of students' monitoring.

Extension Policy for Master's and Doctoral Sandwich Programs

In JFY2005, the Secretariat emphasized to Host Institutions the policy of scholarship extension that scholarship durations were strictly two and three years for Master's and PhD level respectively, and that cost-sharing in form of tuition fee waiving during extension period was needed. Particularly for PhD Sandwich Program, the Ad-hoc Committee on Extension Policy of PhD Sandwich Students, consisting of representatives from Member Institutions and AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat, reached a resolution that the extension would be considered strictly based on justified reasons and could be approved on condition that Host Institutions waive 100% tuition fees and AUN/SEED-Net supports returning flight ticket, insurance, and reduced or no stipend based on case-by-case basis. In case that the extension is predictable, the request for extension of scholarship should be submitted to AUN/SEED-Net at least two months prior to the scholarship end; and the students should be advised to save some budget for their living expenses during the extension period.

Host Institutions positively responded to the policy in principle and agreed to make cost-sharing in form of full or 50% tuition fee waiving as in the table below.

Thailand

  • CU & KMITL give 50% fee waiving during extension for 1 semester.

Malaysia

  • USM & UM give full fee waiving during extension for 1 semester.

Philippines

  • UP & DLSU give full fee waiving during extension for 1 semester / trimester.

Indonesia

  • ITB gives full fee waiving during extension for 1-2 semesters.
  • UGM is considering giving full fee waiving during extension.

Singapore

  • NUS & NTU give full fee waiving during extension for 1 semester.
 

Alumni Network

By JFY2005, the number of alumni under Graduate Programs reaches 74. Out of the number, 52 are graduates of JFY2005; namely 51 master's holders plus one Ph.D. holder from PhD Program in Japan. Sorted by Sending Institutions, UGM has the highest number of alumni of 22. Details are illustrated in Chart 15 below.

Chart 15: Number of graduates as of JFY2005

To pull alumni together after their graduation and home return, an alumni network has been setting up. A web page on alumni is, therefore, created and included in AUN/SEED-Net website (http://www.seed-net.org/alumni.php). There, alumni can find useful information, which are report of total graduates per year, alumni online directory and list of alumni coordinators at Sending Institutions.

In addition to information provision, students are encouraged to create their own mailing groups for their Host Institutions. The mailing group will serve as another mean for current students and graduates to communicate among one another as well as keep in touch with the project and their Host Institutions.

For the coming years, more activities are being planned to strengthen alumni network; for example, an alumnus will be invited and financially supported to attend a field-wise seminar, cooperation with JICA Alumni Association at member countries, occasional gathering, etc.

The network is expected to include up to 416 alumni by year 2010, namely after the completion of JFY2008 batch. See the chart below.

Chart 16: Projects number of AUN/SEED-Net graduates at the end of the initial phase

 

Public Relations

Public relations activities of AUN/SEED-Net have been promoted by the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat, JICA, and Member Institutions. These activities include web site, press releases, media exposures, newsletters and publications.

AUN/SEED-Net website plays a main role in public relations because it serves as news reporter and information provider of the Network. News, press releases, announcements, application forms and guidelines, and other information related to the Network have been posted on the web for the use of Member Institutions and the public. In JFY2005 there were about 27,000 accesses to the AUN/SEED-Net web site, with home page, scholarships and news as most popular pages.

The Secretariat also distributed eight press releases to Member Institutions and stakeholders as well as the media, aiming at public awareness of the Network. Articles and interviews about the Network's activities were published in JICA magazine and local newspapers. Moreover, the news of the Workshop on Disaster Mitigation & Management in ASEAN Countries held in Thailand was publicized through several local news agencies. In total, AUN/SEED-Net news was exposed on the media and websites for 25 times in JFY2005.

AUN/SEED-Net has issued quarterly newsletters since the beginning of the fiscal year 2005 with the purpose of tightening the relationship within the Network and publicizing the Network's activities, students and alumni achievements, and information about member institutions as well as respective engineering fields. In 2005 the Project published 4 issues of newsletter, altogether combined into Volume 1.

Other publications of AUN/SEED-Net in 2005 include Annual Report 2004, Minutes of the 9 th Steering Committee Meeting and Year 2005 Annual Meeting, Minutes of the 10 th Steering Committee Meeting, and Report of Workshop on Disaster Mitigation & Management in ASEAN Countries. The Project also plans to revise its brochures and produce Project Overview CD for the latter half of the current Project phase.

 

Mid-Term Evaluation

With the Project period of 5 years in the initial phase, the AUN/SEED-Net Project reached its mid way in 2005 where the mid-term evaluation was required to assess achievements of the Project based on the Project Design Matrix (PDM). Teams of joint evaluators from JICA Headquarters, JICA Thailand Office, Japanese Supporting University Consortium (JSUC), AUN Board of Trustee, and AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat were set up to determine the Project's achievement, revise the initial plan if needed, and address the issues of implementation for improvement in the latter half of the Project period and the sustainability of the Network. After collecting opinions and ideas from concerned persons in Member Institutions (MIs), government ministries, Japanese Supporting Universities (JSUs), JICA country offices and other related individuals and organizations through interviews and questionnaires during November 2005, the teams came up with the following evaluation results:

Functions of the Network have been relevant to the needs of all MIs.

Academic exchanges and cooperative activities conducted through the Project can improve educational and research capacities of the MIs, which is relevant to their needs. Learning within ASEAN region with similar settings to students' home countries provides students with practical and adaptable knowledge and technology. The Project also contributes much to unity in this region.

Inputs have been managed effectively and efficiently to yield expected outputs.

The Project has been efficiently implemented to achieve certain outputs expected in the initial period. Faculty qualifications and host graduate programs have been enhanced, while linkage within the Network has been promoted. However, it is still too early and difficult to evaluate the effectiveness and the overall result of the Project at this stage.

Some impacts of the Project have been observed by MIs.

Though the Project is in the beginning period, strengthened ties among the ASEAN countries through the network and expansion of the relationship to JSUs are visible impacts that can be observed now by MIs. After the commencement of the Project, more collaboration between JSU and MI or between MIs have been settled in form of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), regional seminars, collaborative research, etc. The Project has created international academic atmosphere in some Host Institutions, which has brought about a positive impact of cultural exchange. For some MIs, the Project has been a model to upgrade qualifications of academic staff.

Sustainability of the Network is still critical.

It is agreed that human networking within MIs and JSUs can be sustained through expansion and function of the Network; however, sustainability of the Network itself is still critical. Strategy, organizational management, and finance are issues to be carefully reviewed by stakeholders. Actions to be taken for the Network's sustainability include support for alumni network and members, formulation of more manageable organizational scale and cost-effective implementation of activities, sharing of work or financial resources between MIs or governments, and acquisition of other financial sources for the Project's activities.

The Network of AUN/SEED-Net is the pioneer who has explored the field-wise and host-sending approach, upon which the concepts and the activities have been formulized. This new type of network among ASEAN universities with support of Japanese universities has been a model for future networks of its similar kind, leading to human resource development in a cost-effective way and relationship strengthening in intraregional and international levels.

The minutes of meetings of the mid-term evaluation was endorsed by all stakeholders and MIs and signed by representatives of JICA Headquarters, Commission on Higher Education of Thailand as Chairman of AUN Board of Trustees, and the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat on 9 December 2005. It was also endorsed by the 10 th Steering Committee Meeting in January 2006.

 

Sustainability

It is remarkable that the importance and positive impacts of the AUN/SEED-Net Project have been recognized by high-leveled persons in the international forum in this fiscal year. At the ASEAN-Japan Summit Meeting on 13 December 2005, held in conjunction with the 11th ASEAN Summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the Prime Minister of Thailand expressed to the Prime Minister of Japan his hope for continued supports of Japanese government to the AUN/SEED-Net Project and expected that the Project could extend research area to disaster management for benefits of the whole region. This remark indicates that the Project has contributed to sustainable development of ASEAN and has been desired by the ASEAN member countries.

Although all Member Institutions (MIs) have expected highly for the continued supports of Japanese government, they have accepted also that the Project's sustainability could be accomplished through contributions from MIs and/or their countries, as stated in the Position Paper on the Sustainability of the AUN/SEED-Net Project endorsed at the 7th Steering Committee Meeting and Year 2004 Annual Meeting and acknowledge by the 16th AUN Board of Trustees Meeting in November 2004. Attempts have been made by the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat to collect funding and supports in terms of full and partial scholarships, tuition fee waiving, and other in-kind collaboration.

Beginning from the year 2005, National University of Singapore (NUS) has co-shared with AUN/SEED-Net the support of tuition fees and monthly stipends for 2 AUN/SEED-Net master's scholars for the period of 2 years. This support increased the quota of NUS-hosted students from 5 to 6 per year. Nanyang Technological University (NTU) agreed to award up to 3 master's scholarships in case that the number of qualified candidates exceeds the quota of 5 scholarships from AUN/SEED-Net. Both universities offered the support of upgrading scheme, which allowed qualified master's students to be upgraded to doctoral level with co-support from the universities and JICA. Thereby the students would be able to obtain doctoral degrees within 4 years, cutting down the period of study in case of taking separate degree programs. In this year NTU also subsidized an AUN/SEED-Net master's student to present research paper at an international conference in Japan. Furthermore, NUS offered 3 or more direct PhD scholarships to AUN/SEED-Net applicants holding bachelor degrees with outstanding capabilities to pursue doctoral degrees directly at NUS with financial support for 4 years. The support of direct PhD scholarships would be implemented under the Doctoral Degree Program in Singapore, to be announced in May 2006.

The Secretariat recognized the need for additional support of tuition fees arising from scholarship extensions, especially for PhD Sandwich students. Ad-hoc Committee on Extension Policy of PhD Sandwich Students was set up at the 9th Steering Committee Meeting in July 2005 to formulate appropriate monitoring and cost-sharing policies for PhD Sandwich scholarship extension. It was agreed that cost-sharing during extension period of master's and PhD Sandwich students should be made by Host Institutions. To correspond with the policy, most Host Institutions have committed to waive full tuition fees during the extension of scholarship. Some Host Institutions would need to discuss this issue at the management level, but positive responses could be anticipated.

In addition, the Commission on Higher Education (CHE) of Thailand granted 15 scholarships under the Faculty Development Scholarship Program with collaboration of AUN/SEED-Net in the year 2005. This program allows local faculty staff of non-Member Institutions of AUN/SEED-Net to pursue doctoral degrees at Host Institutions in Thailand, which contributes to the sustainability of the Network according to the Position Paper on the Sustainability of the AUN/SEED-Net Project and can be a model for other Member Countries.

Supports of Member Institutions/Countries towards the Project's sustainability are summarized in the table.

Indonesia ITB gives full fee waiving during extension for 1-2 semesters.
Malaysia USM & UM give full fee waiving during extension for 1 semester .
Philippines UP & DLSU give full fee waiving during extension for 1 semester/trimester.
Singapore NUS & NTU give full fee waiving during extension for 1 semester.
NUS & NTU give master's scholarships (partial by NUS, full by NTU).
NUS & NTU support upgrading to Ph.D. level (co-support with JICA).
NUS & NTU support conference subsidy (if quota left from PhD level).
NUS gives 3 direct Ph.D. scholarships.
Thailand CU & KMITL give 50% fee waiving during extension for 1 semester.
CU supports Secretariat Office and utility costs.
Thai Government gives a maximum of 96 full master 's and/or PhD scholarships for 4 years (24 annually) under the Faculty Staff Development Program since 2005.

CHE Faculty Development Scholarship Program in Engineering with the Collaboration of AUN/SEED-Net

As a contribution to the sustainability of AUN/SEED-Net , the Faculty Development Scholarship Program in Engineering with the Collaboration of AUN/SEED-Net was endorsed by the Commission on Higher Education of Thailand (CHE) to increase the number of high quality lecturers in Thai universities and to strengthen the academic performance in engineering field. The program is tenable for 4 years starting from 2005, with a maximum of 24 doctoral scholarships per year allocated to 3 engineering fields, namely Civil Engineering (CE) and Electrical & Electronic Engineering (EEE) hosted by Chulalongkorn University (CU) and Information & Communication Technology (ICT) hosted by King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang (KMITL). During the scholarship period, the scholars can be included in the Collaborative Research Program of AUN/SEED-Net and do research at an overseas university, preferably in Japan , for not more than one year.

In 2005, the Program awarded 15 scholarships to successful applicants: 8 in CE, 4 in EEE and 3 in ICT. Most scholars have joined the Collaborative Research Projects with AUN/SEED-Net students.

 

Workshop on Disaster Mitigation and Management in ASEAN Countries and Related Activities

In response to the destructive Tsunami disaster on 26 December 2004 that affected the most part of ASEAN region, including Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, and Myanmar, AUN/SEED-Net has initiated collaborative activities towards natural disaster mitigation and management among Member Institutions and with Japanese Supporting Universities. The first interdisciplinary workshop was organized by AUN/SEED-Net with technical assistance of Chulalongkorn University (CU), Tokyo Institute of Technology (TIT) and Hokkaido University, on 3-4 August 2006 in Phuket, Thailand.

The Workshop on Disaster Mitigation and Management in ASEAN Countries, focusing on Earthquake and Tsunami, aimed at sharing of information and research experiences among ASEAN countries and Japan, identification of university roles in research and education, and exploration of new collaborative research topics related to natural disasters. Twenty-nine experts from ASEAN and Japan gathered at this event to present country reports on natural disasters affecting their countries and discuss joint research activities to educate people and generate solutions for disaster mitigation. The participants also surveyed tsunami-affected sites in Phuket and Phang-Nga to observe damages and recovery actions. And on this occasion, AUN/SEED-Net and the participants made donations to Phuket Girl School and Thai Red Cross's Tsunami Relief Fund.

After the workshop, TIT and CU jointly set up a distance learning class in earthquake engineering during December 2005 – February 2006. Launched via teleconference system, the course on Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster Reduction was attended by students of both universities. Moreover, Center of Excellence on Urban Earthquake Engineering (CUEE) of TIT agreed to support collaborative research in related topics conducted by Member Institutions.

 

Other Activities

-- Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) Meeting --

7 June 2005: The 3rd JCC Meeting for Thailand was held by the Commission on Higher Education (CHE), Ministry of Education. It was chaired by the Secretary General of CHE Prof. Dr. Pavich Tongroach, and participated by representatives from Thai Member Institutions i.e. Chulalongkorn University, King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang and Burapha University, ASEAN University Network (AUN), Thailand International Development Cooperation Agency (TICA), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Thailand Office, Embassy of Japan, AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat and JICA Project for AUN/SEED-Net. Main discussion points included activity review of the past year and plan of the next year, monitoring and sustainability, and the Faculty Development Scholarship Program funded by CHE.

-- Steering Committee Meetings --

4 July 2005: The 9th Steering Committee Meeting and Year 2005 Annual Meeting was arranged at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, chaired by Prof. Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevara, Dean of College of Engineering of the University of the Philippines-Diliman (UP). Key agenda of the meeting included annual report of the Project's activities in JFY2004 and plan of JFY2005, scholarship extension policy, mid-term evaluation, sustainability, and the workshop on disaster mitigation and management to be organized by AUN/SEED-Net. At this meeting Prof. Dr. Panitan Lukkunaprasit handed over the position of Executive Director of the AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat to Assoc. Prof. Krisada Visavateeranon.

20 January 2006: The 10th Steering Committee Meeting was held at the Peninsula Hotel Manila, the Philippines, with 35 participants including members of the Ad-hoc Committee on Extension Policy of PhD Sandwich Students who had met for discussion on the previous day. Presided over the opening ceremony were Commissioner of Commission on Higher Education (CHED) of the Philippines Dr. Saturnino M. Ocampo, Jr., UP President Dr. Emerlinda R. Roman, UP-Diliman Vice Chancellor Dr. Lorna I. Paredes, and Counsellor to the President of JICA Mr. Michio Kanda. The meeting endorsed the minutes of meetings of Mid-Term Evaluation of the AUN/SEED-Net Project and discussed necessary actions for preparation of the Project's next phase.

-- Courtesy Calls --

22 September 2005: The AUN/SEED-Net Secretariat was paid visit by high-ranking delegates of the African Institute for Capacity Development (AICAD). The team consisted of Ms. Mollel Ruth Hiyob, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Science, Technology and High Education of Tanzania, Mr. Francis X. K. Lubanka, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education and Sports of Uganda, and Mr. Tomikazu INAGAKI, Chief Advisor of AICAD/JICA. After the briefing of the Project's background, structure, concept strategy and implementation of activities by the Secretariat, both parties shared experiences and opinions in managing multilateral organizations.

9 January 2006: The Secretariat paid a visit to the Commission on Higher Education (CHE), Ministry of Education of Thailand , in order to present our appreciation for CHE supports in the past year, to summarize the progress of the Project's activities, to strengthen relationship and to secure backing for the AUN/SEED-Net Project continuation.

11 January 2006: The Secretariat paid a courtesy visit to the ASEAN Affairs Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand, to extend our deep appreciation for their supports to the AUN/SEED-Net Project at the ASEAN Plus Three Summit in December 2005, during which the Prime Minister of Thailand mentioned to the Prime Minister of Japan the expectation for the AUN/SEED-Net Project's continuation and expansion. The ASEAN Affairs Department agreed to support and promote the Project to other ASEAN countries in political manner.

8 February 2006: The Secretariat visited the ASEAN University Network (AUN) to learn more information about AUN activities and cooperative partners. The two parties agreed to tighten the relationship and exchange information for reciprocal supports.

14 February 2006: The AUN/SEED-Net team paid a courtesy visit to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Bangkok, to promote the Project and to find possible collaboration in engineering education.

23 February 2006: The AUN/SEED-Net team called upon Prof. Dr. Satriyo Soemantri Braodjonegoro, Director General of Higher Education, Ministry of National Education (MONE) of Indonesia, to discuss project strategies and sustainability issues of the AUN/SEED-Net Project. The meeting was fruitful and MONE committed to support the Projects in terms of scholarships for foreign students and research funds.

27 February 2006: The AUN/SEED-Net team paid a call on the World Bank Bangkok Office to promote the Project and to seek the Bank's advice for support acquisition.

15 March 2006: The Secretariat had a meeting with Dato' Prof. Hassan Said, Director of Higher Education Department, Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) of Malaysia, to discuss the AUN/SEED-Net Project sustainability and support from Malaysian Government. The team also visited the Economic Planning Unit under the Prime Minister's Department to update the AUN/SEED-Net Project's outcomes and to discuss the similar issues.