Sweden’s least known university is in Thailand
The Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) in Bangkok is an English-language university which carries out high level education and research. The university also promotes peaceful development in the Asia-Pacific region. Sweden has played a role
– Most people probably don’t know that Sweden plays a leading role in such a successful project in South East Asia or that a university can act as a peacemaker, says Sten Dellby, Director of Communications at the University of Borås and currently on location in Thailand.
Since 2005, Professor Said Irandoust, former President of the University of Borås, has been the President of AIT.
– Said Irandoust has carried out extensive negotiations in order to reach an agreement between the countries that supports AIT, says Sten Dellby. At a formal ceremony last week, ambassadors from twelve countries, including Sweden, signed a treaty which officially gives AIT intergovernmental organisation status. Later this year more countries are expected to sign up.
At present, diplomatic relations between two of the countries in the region, Thailand and Cambodia, are strained and both countries’ ambassadors have been withdrawn. But Cambodia’s Chargé d'affaires was present at the ceremony in Bangkok and signed the treaty on behalf of his country, says Sten Dellby, who thinks that AIT is an excellent example of how higher education can unite countries.
AIT offers mainly Masters and PhD programmes which focus on technology and sustainable development. Just as important is AIT’s role as a forum for international dialogue and as a breeding ground for future leaders in this part of the world. At AIT, students from countries such as Burma, India, Nepal and China are together in the same classroom and both North and South Koreans participate in AIT activities.
AIT was founded in 1959 as a graduate school by SEATO, thought to become an equivalent to NATO in South East Asia. However, later AIT becomes independent of SEATO and has mainly been funded by contributions from Europe and other Western countries such as Australia, Japan, and Canada. There is also a strong support from the Thai government. Sweden is, via its International Development Cooperation Agency, SIDA, one of the largest donors.
– That a university becomes an intergovernmental organisation is in itself quite unique, not to mention the fact that it is located at the centre of international politics, says Sten Dellby. It is positive that Sweden gets to play such an important role in this context.
The content is free for publishing.
For more information, please contact:
Sten Dellby, Director of Communications at the University of Borås (email@example.com)
- said irandoust
- university of borås
- phd programmes
Högskolan i Borås bedriver utbildningar inom biblioteks- och informationsvetenskap, ekonomi och informatik, mode och textil, beteendevetenskap och lärarutbildning, teknik samt vårdvetenskap. Campus ligger mitt i city, och vi har ca 11 000 studenter och 748 anställda.
Högskolan i Borås försöker ständigt minimera gapet mellan teori och praktik. Därför utbildas våra studenter nära arbetslivet. Vi satsar på problembaserad forskning med tydliga professionskopplingar. Våra studenter ska snabbt kunna fungera i yrkeslivet efter avlagd examen. Högskolan i Borås har fyra examenstillstånd på forskarnivå inom biblioteks- och informationsvetenskap, människan i vården, resursåtervinning samt textil och mode.