15 February 2024

The 28th AUN/SEED-Net Steering Committee Meeting Has Shown Strong Interest for Continuation

Patitin Lertnaikiat
AUN Programme Officer;

The 28th AUN/SEED-Net Steering Committee Meeting (SCM) was conducted on 31 January 2024. AUN/SEED-Net has been a project that started since its preparatory stage from 2001–2003. Then in Phase I, the network’s foundation was established. Moving on to Phase II, the network was strengthened and promoted which expanded into Phase III. Phase III involved linking with industry and emphasizing the common regional issues. Phase IV focuses on sustainability. The transitional period started from 2023 and will continue on to 2026 under the co-management of the ASEAN University Network (AUN) and JICA for collaborations among the ASEAN, Japan, and beyond.

Throughout the lifespan of the project, the network has expanded to encompass 26 ASEAN Member Institutions (MI) and 18 Japanese Partner Universities (JPU) across 10 Engineering Fields. They have had opportunities to collaborate in a network that supported various Scholarships, Research and Mobility Programs, Academic Conferences, Journal Publications, and University-Industry Linkages. In the current Transitional Phase, an online survey was conducted to gather suggestions for the future of AUN/SEED-Net after March 2026. The result of this survey was presented at the 28th SCM and has shown that there is demand for the continuation and enhancement of programs where AUN will continue its supportive role in maintaining and strengthening coordination functions for collaboration between Japanese and ASEAN universities.

Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has been discussing with AUN for further collaborations to sustain AUN/SEED-Net even after the termination of the current transitional phase which will end in March 2026. Continued active participation and contribution from MIs and JPUs will be critical to sustaining and strengthening the network for the future and collaboration with other partners will be the key for sustainability. Moreover, past experiences and lessons learned over 20 years of operation of AUN/SEED-Net will shape the future of how to sustain the network.