Laos, Vietnam, Thailand Join Hands to Boost Tech Innovation and Creativity

Laos, Vietnam, Thailand to Boost Innovation, Creativity
Representatives from Makerbox Lao, KKU and USTH. (Photo: USTH)

Makerbox Lao, University of Science and Technology Hanoi (USTH), and Khon Kaen University (KKU) Thailand came together to discuss a possible collaboration in promoting innovation and creativity through technological competitions.

Representatives from USTH, KKU, and Makerbox Lao convened at USTH, where they agreed to work together to organize an international competition for students from the three countries, allowing them to demonstrate their skills in various areas such as Hackathons, Makeathons, Data Science, Data Processing, Programming, and AI.

During the meeting, Associate Professor Tran Dinh Phong, Vice Rector of USTH, shared his recommendations on the steps involved in organizing a competition of this magnitude. These included inviting participants, providing them with a better understanding of the competition’s theme, and seeking sponsorship for the event.

While the overall theme of the competition has not been finalized, a working group has been established to address this matter. It is also possible that the competition may feature multiple themes.

Derek Spranger, the Co-Founder and CTO of Makerbox Lao, also shared his experiences and challenges he faced in creating technological competitions in Laos. He expressed his desire to collaborate with USTH in innovation research. One of the primary aims of this tripartite collaboration is to enhance research capabilities and foster stronger relationships. Makerbox Lao also seeks to facilitate collaborations among ASEAN nations to jointly explore new ideas, concepts, and potential startup ventures.

When asked about the competition’s availability to students from countries outside the initial three, Derek says, “We are initially designing the program on a smaller scale. However, if we receive additional support from other organizations or universities, we will explore the possibility of expanding the competition to include not only more students but also neighboring countries.”

Makerbox Lao is a non-profit organization that serves as a collaborative workspace for making, learning, exploring, and sharing. It welcomes individuals of all ages, genders, skill levels, and backgrounds. The organization operates every day and provides mentors and access to experts who can assist anyone in realizing their ideas and transforming them into reality.

Makerbox Lao and KKU have also joined forces together in the past, by doing cross country staff training to share experiences, collaborate on ideas and showcase their different skills.