ASEAN aims to harmonize higher education in the region with the aim to enhance regional competitiveness; build a common ASEAN identity; and foster intraregional economic gains. In particular, efforts have been directed at: (1) fostering education cooperation through comparability of higher education systems using a regional quality assurance and qualifications framework; and (2) allowing greater movement of students and through a common credit transfer system and appropriate support structure and mechanism for student and staff mobility.

While a priority for ASEAN, there is still much to be done in fostering integration in the education sector, ranging from creating public awareness and eliminating barriers to better synergize programs. The panel discussion on 2 November at 5.30 at SEA Junction addressed some of the benefits and challenges of economic integration in the context of student mobility and education cooperation. Invited speakers were:

  • Jaruwat Kiatiwongse,Director, International Network Development Office, Bangkok University: “Student Mobility in ASEAN: Trends and Experiences”
  • Zin Mar Oo, Program Director, Thabyay Education Foundation: “Supporting Students from Myanmar to Study Abroad”
  • Ahmad Wisnu Mulyadi from UNESCO
  • Anantalia Widyastari, Indonesian Scholars’ Alliance

This event is the sixth of a series of events on movements of people in Southeast Asia entitled ASEAN People in Flux, which is organized by SEA Junction in collaboration with the Heinrich Boll Stiftung Southeast Asia. The series consisting of seven interrelated events aims to examine the complexity of intraregional mobility spurred by regionalization efforts and to discuss the policies governing it. In particular, by putting a spot on different kinds of people’s movements, the series highlights the double standards in the ASEAN’s approach to mobility.

Photos by: Rosalia Scoirtino and Kanyawee Seedabut