In July 2021, Associate Professor Gasinee Witoonchart was once again appointed by the EFMD as the “First Thai” to sit in a high-ranking executive position, namely “the EMFD Board (Board of Trustees) in order to join in setting the direction for studies in international business administration.
In today’s modern world, the direction and trends for global business administration, tend to be involved with and led by accreditation institutions for world-class educational standards in business administration. There are three giant institutions in this group: 1. The EFMD, or the European Foundation for Management Development is an accreditation institution for educational standards in Europe; 2. The AACSB, or the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is an accreditation institution for educational standards in the United States of America and 3. The AMBA, or the Association of MBAs is an accreditation institutions for educational standards in the United Kingdom.
The main duties of all three of these institutions is to certify educational standards for faculties of business administration at accredited universities celebrated as “Owners of the Crown”. Nevertheless, although the business administration curriculum involves arranging lessons in leading universities worldwide, less than 1% of all accredited universities offering this curriculum meet the standards of these three institutions, or are owners of the “Triple Crown”.
But the Business School at Thammasat University under the leadership of Assoc. Prof. Gasinee Witoonchart, Rector of Thammasat University, had been one of the successful owners of the Triple Crown in that 1%.
During the COVID-19 outbreak, the name, “Assoc. Prof. Gasinee” has been widely mentioned as a model for leading academic institutions to serve society. And over the past year, her name has been in the spotlight again for her appointment as the only EFMD Fellow in Asia.
Assoc. Prof. Gasinee says that EFMD expects Thammasat University to serve as a network or hub in ASEAN to link with organizations in the business sector, including institutions offering courses in business administration for advancement toward quality at the international level together.
The Board of Trustees is the high-ranking board that sets EFMD policy, which includes connections with the government, businesses and academic institutions all over the world to join together in the development and application of business administration knowledge, further including the setting of evaluation criteria for developing the capacity of academic institutions in the field of business administration worldwide, leading the way to what education should be in the future.
For example, EFMD has specified that current trends are international, ethical and cooperative matters with various organizations for the development of knowledge and society together, which will lead to global business administration aimed at development of courses. Otherwise, EFMD will not grant accreditation.
From Assoc. Prof. Gasinee’s point of view, business administration during and after the COVID-19 era will undo tremendous changes. Businesses need agility with constant adaptation to rapidly changing situations, continually developing people through up-skilling/re-skilling, which is the core of corporate success. Access to new technology is not limited to only large companies. For example, small restaurants can benefit from the Food Delivery application by accessing new customer bases, which boosts their competitive capacity like never before. Therefore, universities have a duty to enable everyone to access new knowledge anytime, anywhere. The development of skills should be lifelong learning. Thammasat University has developed online platforms for anyone who is interested in developing new skills. Furthermore, they can accumulate units until they’ve earned a master’s degree.
For her primary mission after receiving this EFMD appointment, Assoc. Prof. Gasinee and Thammasat University are prepared to host international conferences in order to inform organizations in Thailand and the ASEAN region.
“The even we’re about to organize will involve getting international organizations and leading world-class universities to accept best practice in various aspects, so they can exchange experiences for integration of knowledge and cooperation among international organizations,” said Assoc. Prof. Gasinee.
This conference will be a pilot conference in expanding participation. Thammasat University will invite organizations in ASEAN to attend, so they can exchange knowledge about good corporate governance accepted at the international level.