Innovation districts are being designated in the capital of Bangkok as well as many other areas in order to breathe life into a variety of innovation-focused initiatives—among them training entrepreneurs, easing regulations, providing subsidies, and carrying out experimental and international projects.
These broad-based policies are being driven by the National Innovation Agency (NIA), a government body under the jurisdiction of the Kingdom of Thailand’s Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research, and Innovation.
Last August, Knowledge Capital was invited by the NIA and the Royal Thai Consulate-General to tour Bangkok and see the situation firsthand.
We found it remarkable that Thailand was implementing innovation development policies that were not uniform, but instead leveraged the unique characteristics of each region. As a result, we were able to interact and exchange feedback with a variety of people regarding many different projects that are currently underway.
In December, the NIA Academy held a Chief City Innovation Office (CCIO) training program for executives, where we covered the development history of Knowledge Capital as well as our operational methods. It was amazing to see the looks of intensity on the faces of Thailand’s innovation corps! And although the training session was aimed at executives, there were plenty of younger people attending. The event gave us a real sense of how next-generation professionals are driving Thailand’s urban development from the front lines.
Knowledge Capital also signed an MOU for mutual collaboration with the NIA last month, with both parties agreeing to further deepen their working relationship in the future. This is the second agency in Thailand that we’ve established a collaborative partnership with. The first was the Thailand Creative & Design Center (TCDC).
MOU signing ceremony
More specifically, Knowledge Capital and the NIA will collaborate on the Next-generation Innovation Professionals Training Program. The NIA is currently implementing a program called STEAM4INNOVATOR that targets Thai high school students. As part of this program, Knowledge Capital will be offering short-term, practical training courses that give Thai high school students a chance to see, experience, and learn at sites where innovation is actually taking place. Both the NIA and Knowledge Capital kicked off the effort based on their mutual understanding that training professionals is essential to sparking innovation. The program is an attempt to translate those convictions into real results.
There are a host of other initiatives lined up for the future as well, including support for startup exchange and business development in both Thailand and Japan and more opportunities for us to participate in NIA-sponsored events in Thailand. Keep an eye out--the collaboration between Knowledge Capital and Thailand is only going to keep getting better!