SEA Junction (or fully “Southeast Asia Junction”) aims to foster understanding and appreciation of Southeast Asia in all its realities and socio-cultural dimensions –from arts and craft to the economy and development– by enhancing public access to knowledge resources and by promoting exchanges among students, specialists and Southeast Asia lovers.
Located at the Bangkok Arts and Culture Centre (BACC) in Bangkok, Thailand, SEA Junction will start functioning as a cultural center on 15 May 2016. Its mission is to:
- Provide a venue for exchanges among people of Southeast Asia and beyond.
- Provide public access to books and other resources on Southeast Asia.
- Gather and share information on conferences, courses, fellowships, exhibits and other events happening about Southeast Asia in the region.
- Organize series of events on Southeast Asia and ASEAN processes, employing BACC facilities.
- Profile emerging artists, intellectuals, practitioners from the region.
- Collaborate with BACC and other relevant Thai, regional and international organizations in promoting knowledge of Southeast Asia and ASEAN through customized programs for a variety of audiences.
SEA Junction provides an informal place of exchanges on Southeast East where people with interest in SEA arts, cultures and societies can meet, share information, consult available resources, and read related literature at their leisure.
The setting is that of an open library where a collection of books on Southeast Asia will be hosted on a wide range of socio-cultural themes for public consultation and reading in locus. At the work-stations, visitors can also access electronic resources.
SEA Junction hosts and organizes events on Southeast Asia and acts as a learning center for students and young people. In its venue, visiting regional specialists and practitioners share experiences, dialogue, and give speeches and small encounters are held for diverse constituencies. Making use of BACC’s meeting facilities more formal programs are proposed, which includes meetings, seminars, lectures, exhibitions and workshops.
Selected crafts and arts of Southeast Asia are also displayed to give a glimpse of the cultural richness of the region, and emerging artists, intellectuals and practitioners are profiled.
Through the website SEA-Junction promotes its activities as well as serving as an electronic knowledge platform on “what is happening” in Southeast Asia.
To enrich these and other activities, linkages with centers, museums and programs with a focus on Southeast Asia are cultivated and opportunities of collaboration welcomed.
Organization and Funding
SEA-Junction builds on regional efforts to support cross-learning and exchanges in the Greater Mekong Sub-region and Southeast Asia. The founder of SEA-Junction, Rosalia Sciortino Sumaryono currently at Mahidol and Chulalongkorn Universities, was involved in many of those programs in her former role of Regional Director for Asia of the Rockefeller Foundation in Thailand and the International Development Research Centre in Singapore, Senior Adviser AusAID in Indonesia and Ford Foundation officer in Indonesia and the Philippines.
Through her work and decades-long permanence in Southeast Asia, she identified a need for a specialized cultural center fro the region, accessible to the general public. At a time when regionalization processes are intensifying with the launching of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015, it is crucial to enhance and disseminate knowledge of Southeast Asia realities and to promote a better understanding between people of the region.
In establishing SEA Junction, the founder received the support of a committed group of so-called ‘founding partners’, who have been willing to provide the initial capital and insights. They are from different countries and background, but have in common a passion for Southeast Asia and a readiness to share their knowledge, expertise and extensive and varied networks.
Born out of this communal spirit, SEA-Junction is a not-for-profit endeavor financed by the founder and the founding partners, and through donations of “Friends of SEA Junction”. In due time, additional resources to cover operational costs will be sought possibly through membership schemes, fees for events, commissions from book sales and/or grant support.
The choice of BACC as a location is due to a shared philosophy of highlighting the rich heritage of Southeast Asia and to ensure “21st century solidarity” in the context of ASEAN integration. This combined with BACC’s strategic location close to major universities with Southeast Asian interests and easily accessible for the general public and travellers, makes of it the perfect home for SEA-Junction as a place “to meet, and to help define and make culture”.
BACC, Suite 408
939 Rama 1 Rd, Pathum Wan
Bangkok 10330, Thailand