The MoU, which replaces a recently expired agreement, will resume AIT scholarships for Pakistani students, particularly at a doctoral level, to alleviate institutional growing pains, and further research collaboration between the two countries. It will also provide support for Pakistan to internationalise its universities.
“Once a country has its own critical mass of competent faculty, doctoral graduates can be home-grown at an exponential rate”
“Under the direction of HEC, the enrollment in higher education in Pakistan has increased so rapidly and subsequently creates an urgent demand for qualified faculty members,” AIT president Worsak Kanok-Nukulchai said on Facebook.
“In order to ensure educational quality, HEC has considered a top priority to upgrade university faculty. Currently only 26% of university faculty have doctoral degrees.”
Pakistan recently set a target for 40% of faculty staff to hold a PhD across its 188 universities by 2025.
“Aside from the international exposure, doctoral graduates from overseas help jump-start international network,” Kanok-Nukulchai said.
“Once a country has its own critical mass of competent faculty, doctoral graduates can be home-grown at an exponential rate.”
During the meetings to finalise the MoU, HEC chairman Mukhtar Ahmed said Pakistan was placing a high importance on research collaboration with other countries to solve mutual problems.
According to reports, both countries will collaborate on joint research into water resources, engineering, solar energy, food security, structures and urban planning and environment, however, full details will be finalised later.
Negotiations for a free trade agreement are currently underway between the two countries, which Thai officials hope will double trade with Pakistan.