Coordinator: University of Helsinki

Main partners: Mahidol University, Silpakorn University

Participating partners: Chulalongkorn University, Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute of Music, Seoul National University, Ewha Womans University, Kyungpook National University

NSEANET has two core aims: 1) teacher and student mobility between Finland and Thailand, and 2) curricula development of two new study modules situated in the framework of comparative area studies between Northeast and Southeast Asia. Relevant expertise on Northeast Asia is located at University of Helsinki, Faculty of Arts, housed across the Departments of Culture and Languages and built on long academic traditions. Corresponding expertise on Southeast Asia is provided by our two partner institutes in Thailand, Silpakorn University and Mahidol University.

We will jointly develop and pilot the comparative study modules focusing on history, archaeology, and linguistics through a series of multi-round mobility periods for teaching personnel who will deliver intensive courses at destination institutes. NSEANET will also supports a similar series of mobility periods for graduate students aiming to provide them exposure to international research practices from early in their careers.

Through these activities, NSEANET works to establish a closely integrated research network across Finland and Thailand between both research faculty and students. At a time of ongoing global turbulance, such a transnational network can function as a two-way bridge between European and Southeast Asian academic practices, and will represent substantive achievement for intercultural communication. This network further extends to institutes in South Korea, where our colleagues possess further expertise in Northeast Asia and a common interest to develop comparative approaches.

NSEANET supports our Thai partner institutes’ strategic missions towards internationalization. Silpakorn and Mahidol have recently enlarged their international network with a number of foreign higher education institutes. The Finnish education system is highly regarded among Thai educational institutes and so they are keen to include Finland as one of their first Nordic and European partners. For the University of Helsinki, NSEANET provides an opportunity to incorporate the important and complex region of Southeast Asia into its current practice of area studies. Ultimately, the project aims to establish the University of Helsinki as a leading global institute for integrated expertise on Northeast and Southeast Asia.