B15bn Thai-UK innovation fund launched

B15bn Thai-UK innovation fund launched

Partnership will support collaboration to tackle global challenges and develop future technologies

The British Embassy and Thailand Science Research and Innovation (TSRI) have jointly announced a fund worth £337 million (15.3 billion baht) to support bilateral development in the fields of science and innovation. (Photo: UK in Thailand Facebook)
The British Embassy and Thailand Science Research and Innovation (TSRI) have jointly announced a fund worth £337 million (15.3 billion baht) to support bilateral development in the fields of science and innovation. (Photo: UK in Thailand Facebook)

The United Kingdom and Thailand have jointly launched a fund worth £337 million (15.3 billion baht) to support development in the fields of science and innovation.

The International Science Partnerships Fund (ISPF) was announced in Bangkok on Monday by the British Embassy and Thailand Science Research and Innovation (TSRI).

The UK government has committed to contributing the funds by the end of next year.

Prompted by current global environmental challenges, the fund aims to help develop and deliver sustainable scientific knowledge while supporting collaborative work involving international partners.

The four major themes to be studied are Resilient Planet; Transformative Technologies; Healthy People, Animal and Plants; and Tomorrow’s Planet.

One of the main objectives of the studies is to tackle global challenges and develop future technologies, positioning UK researchers and innovators at the heart of global situations, the embassy said.

It also aims to make meaningful contributions towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals through the use of equitable international research and innovation partnerships while enabling global collaborations.

For Thailand, the fund will benefit institutions including Leaders in Innovation Fellowships (LIF), Transforming Systems Through Partnerships (TSP) and the MRC-SEA One Health and Pandemic Preparedness programme.

“We are seeking collaborations from different sectors to work together between two countries and take forward the scientific research and development to tackle the big global challenges together,” said Mark Gooding, the British ambassador.

“With the launch of this fund, it augments our belief that international collaboration is crucial,” said Sirirurg Songsivilai, the science, research and innovation promotion committee chairperson at TSRI.

Patamawadee Pochanukul, the TSRI president, said that researchers must adopt future-oriented viewpoints and consider the possibility of new challenges such as a new disease.

Meanwhile, environmental issues will continue to require international collaboration, especially between the UK and Thailand which have been working together for a long time.

“We are glad to be partnered with the UK in developing our research system,” she said. “With the national and public benefits as our prime focus, we will intensify our research and use our budget wisely.”

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