Bandar Seri Begawan - Representatives of governments and leading universities in Asean and Japan gathered in Bangkok, Thailand, on November 29 to sign on the Cooperative Framework of the AUN/SEEDNet or Asean University Network/Southeast Asia Engineering Education Development Network, a press release stated.
The signing marked a new page of higher education collaboration in the Asean region where leading universities work together for socio-economic development with cooperation from the industry, which would contribute to the establishment of the Asean Community.
Brunei Darussalam has two Member Institutions (MI) which comprise of two local universities offering engineering programmes, Institut Teknologi Brunei (ITB) and Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD).
The Government of Brunei Darussalam was represented by Dr Hj Junaidi bin Hj Abdul Rahman, Permanent Secretary (Core Education) at the Ministry of Education.
Representing the two universities on behalf of UBD's Vice Chancellor and ITB's Acting Vice Chancellor were the AUN/SEED-Net MI Representatives Pg Dr Mohd Iskandar bin Pg Hj Petra and Pg Dr Saiful Baharin bin Pg Hj Duraman, respectively.
The AUN/SEED-Net was established in 2001, emerging from the initiative derived at the Asean-Japan Summit. It is intended as a framework towards sustainable development after the economic crisis that struck the Asian region.
The AUN/SEED-Net is comprised of 19 leading engineering institutions in Asean and 11 supporting universities in Japan.
Impressive outputs of the AUN/SEED-Net include development of engineering lecturers and researchers, strengthening of graduate programmes, and establishment of human network among Asean and Japan.
The signing of the Cooperative Framework was a significant milestone for the AUN/SEEDNet Network.
The new Cooperative Framework was made for the operation of the AUN/SEED-Net from March 2013 onwards, identifying the structure and the expansion of the Network.
From March, the Network will include seven new Member Institutions from Asean and three new supporting universities from Japan.
For five years from now, the AUN/SEED-Net will focus on three missions. First, it would contribute to advancement of the industry in the Asean region through promotion of university - industry collaborative activities.
Second, regional common issues would be intensely addressed and responded through collaborative researches and conferences.
Last but not least, the Network would continue enhancing educational and research capacities of our member institutions through the production of high-qualified faculty staff, promotion of researcher and student mobility around the region and with Japan, alongside the encouragement of joint international programme development by the Member Institutions.
These are new collaborations among the universities in this region and also the first kind of cooperation between the academic network and the industries in Asean.
With high expectation from the concerned parties and governments, the AUN/SEEDNet can contribute to the establishment of the Asean Community especially in fostering solidarity among academics and professionals and producing high-quality manpower with Aseanness.--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin