Thailand and the European Union launched a new initiative on 9 September, aiming to promote cooperation between researchers of the EU and the country. The agreement is pioneering collaboration between the EU and the ASEAN region, as this is the first arrangement that will enable cooperation between Thai researchers and European Research Council (ERC) grantees.
Researchers supported by the Thai Programme Management Unit for Human Resources & Institutional Development, Research and Innovation (PMU-B) of the National Higher Education, Science, Research & Innovation Policy Council will be able to participate in the work of ERC research groups, given mutual interest and/or similarity of research topics. The PMU-B, according to its administrative arrangement, will facilitate coordination as well as their long or short-term research trips.
The initiative was signed in Bangkok by European Union Ambassador to Thailand, David Daly, and the Director of PMU-B Sompong Klaynongsruang. ERC President Maria Leptin attended the ceremony remotely, stating that“We welcome this new agreement that is fully in line with the ERC’s openness to the world.” Prof Leptin’s statement illustrates the ambitions ERC fosters to establish Europe as a global research hub, relying on worldwide outreach. Implementing Arrangements between the council and numerous research organisations in South and North America, Asia and Africa are already in place. The agreement with Thailand is to be an important part of the global outreach strategy.