The ATI is allocated operational funding of $250,000 each financial year. In addition to covering the running costs of the Institute, these monies may be used to fund specific programs as identified by the ATI Advisory Board.
Confirmed programs for the 2011 calendar year follow. Details of additional Board projects coming up in the 2012 calendar year will be posted as they become available.
ATI Bilateral Education Programs
As part of the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Australia and Thailand, the Australia-Thailand Institute (ATI) will support two new innovative education projects, as announced by the Prime Minister, the Hon Julia Gillard MP during the visit to Australia by the Prime Minister Thailand, Her Excellency Yingluck Shinawatra in May 2012
Thai Sports journalists Visit
During May 2012, the ATI will be funding a program inviting Thai Sports Journalists to visit the country to learn about Australia and how sports form an integral part of the society. The program will focus on themes such as sports in Australia as a business, the development of grassroots and junior level leagues to cultivate sports talent, as well as exploring links between sports, education and health issues.
Thai Political Exchange Program
The ATI is hosting an inaugural biennial exchange program for young Thai and Australian MP's in June/July 2012. Up to three young Thai female MP's will visit Australia for a week long program to establish lasting personal connections between young Australian and Thai politicians. The program will assist young Australian and Thai politicians to better understand the societies of each country and, as a result, establish stronger people-to-people ties between Australia and Thailand. Furthermore, the program will expose the MP's from each country to the parliamentary system of the other, increasing the overall understanding of democratic processes in each other's countries.
Special Visits Program - ATI Thai University Visit 2012
The Australian- Thailand Institute funded six directors of International Units from six prominent Thai Universities to travel to Australia from 27 February to 3 March 2012 to meet their counterparts at six Australian Universities to discuss ways of increasing student mobility from Australia to Thailand. At each university, the delegation met with International Relations Units, representatives from Study Abroad programs, and interested academics.
Sustainable Mining Policy Visit
From 22 to 30 October 2011 the ATI is funding a delegation of three senior Thai officials to travel to Australia for a Sustainable Mining Policy Visit. This will provide a valuable opportunity for the delegation to learn more about Australia's sustainable mining practices. It will also give participants an opportunity to make valuable contacts in Australian Government departments, mining companies, and industry groups.
Australia-Thailand Institute Alumni and Networking Event
On the evening of 30 November 2011 the ATI will be hosting a networking evening for like-minded individuals to discuss promoting linkages between Australia and Thailand. It will also be an opportunity for people to meet members of the ATI Advisory Board, the Thailand Ambassador to Australia, and senior government officials.
This free event will commence at 6:00pm at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, RG Casey Building, John McEwen Crescent, Barton. All those interested in building linkages between Australia and Thailand are encouraged to attend.
Next Generation Community Leaders (NGCL) Visit
This annual flagship program will again bring young Thai community leaders from differing faiths and regional areas to Australia to experience our culture and gain an understanding of the different ways in which multiculturalism is approached by the Australian Government and private sector organisations, and embraced by communities. The visit will be scheduled for a date in the first half of 2012.
Making the Thailand-Australia Free Trade Agreement Work For You Seminar
On 20 July 2010, in conjunction with the Thai Board of Investment, the ATI co-funded a seminar in Melbourne to promote the benefits of TAFTA. Guest speakers included His Excellency Dr Kriangsak Kittichaisaree, Thailand Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Australia; Ms Maurine Lam, Regional Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner: ASEAN North and Minister Commercial to Thailand, Austrade; Ms Duangjai Asawachintachit, Assistant Secretary General, Thailand Board of Investment; Mr Jason Ellis, President, BlueScope Steel Thailand; and Mr Andrew Durieux, then President of the Australia-Thai Chamber of Commerce.
Next Generation Community Leaders (NGCL) Visit
This annual flagship program brings young Thai community leaders from differing faiths and regional areas to Australia to experience our culture and gain an understanding of the different ways in which multiculturalism is approached by the Australian Government and private sector organisations, and embraced by communities. The 2011 visit brought six Thai community leaders to Sydney and Melbourne between 5-11 June. The visit schedule included the following engagements:
|Parramatta West Primary School||Aust. Federal Police Community Liaison Team|
|Forum on Australian-Islamic Relations||Australian Multicultural Foundation|
|Dinner with ATI Chairman, Mr Mike Courtnall||Dinner with ATI Board member, Prof. Saeed|
|Thulli Dreaming Indigenous Troupe||Dandenong interfaith tour|
|Roundtable, interview and tour of SBS Radio|
|Guided tour of State Library of Victoria|
Participants found the visit to be extremely useful and have indicated that they will apply what they had seen and experienced to their own work within their communities. All of the young leaders have returned home with a deeper understanding of Australia and an appreciation of our culture and society.
Next Generation Community Leaders Alumni Event
Following the completion of six highly successful annual NGCL visits to Australia, the ATI sponsored an alumni event for all past participants in the program. This event was held in Bangkok on 12 May 2011 with ATI Chairman, Mr Mike Courtnall, and ATI Board member, Mr John Hancock, in attendance. The alumni event gave past participants the chance to exchange stories and experiences from their visits and to build contacts with each other, creating on-going and long lasting personal and professional relationships.
Thai Media Visit
Three Thai journalists in the field of arts and culture visited Australia from 11 to 18 March 2011. The journalists were Anant Lerpradit (Chief Reporter, Krungthep Turakij newspaper), Rungfa Limhassanaikul (Senior Reporter, Season magazine) and Weerawut Ujjutamanus (Editor, Hamburger magazine). The Australian Embassy Bangkok's Public and Cultural Diplomacy Director, Ms Piyarat Suksiri, accompanied the participants. The purpose of the visit was to expose the journalists to Australian art and culture, including Australian education in the arts and Australian Government policy supporting the arts. The journalists attended the Inverloch Jazz Festival, visited the Gertrude Contemporary Art Space in Melbourne, the Victorian College of Arts and Music, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, met with the chief Executive Officer, Asialink and attended the L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival. In Sydney the journalists met with the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Council for the Arts and Mr Michael Laverty, Managing Director of Tropfest and ATI Board member. They also received a backstage tour of the Sydney Opera House, toured the Powerhouse Museum, visited the Thulli Dreaming Aboriginal Dance Troup, and attended the YouTube Symphony Orchestra Woodwind Ensemble recital. Feedback from the participants was very positive and the journalists were impressed by Australia's rich, modern and creative art and cultural scene and the abundance of Australian artistic talent.
ATI Elite Swimming Coach Scholarship
The ATI approached the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT) in late 2010 to discuss the possibility of funding an elite scholarship program for Thai coaches or athletes, giving them full autonomy to choose the sport and coach/athlete option that would best suit their requirements. The Thailand Swimming Association nominated, through the SAT, Mr Sathit Hongthong (a swimming coach from the Chalermprakuiat Youth Centre) to take part in the scholarship program. Nunawading Swimming Club in Melbourne agreed to host Mr Hongthong for a four week program with Mr Rohan Taylor nominated as the high performance swim coach that would mentor him for the duration of his scholarship.
The scholarship allowed Mr Hongthong to attend daily training sessions, assist with athlete sports science testing, attend strength conditioning workouts, assist with video and bio-mechanic sessions, meet with the Victorian Institute of Sport and travel to the Australian Short Course Swimming Championships in Adelaide. Courtesy calls were also arranged for Mr Hongthong to meet the President of the Swimming Australia Board, Mr David Urquhart, and the Australian National Head Swimming Coach, Mr Leigh Nugent.
The scholarship program was very successful and Mr Hongthong will make a significant contribution to the development of a Thai swimming coach training course. He will be able to implement best practice training methods and is looking at ways to implement the regular development and updating of athletes technical and tactical skills, as well as initiating the Target Operation Model of analysis and results assessment.
Thailand Universities Guitar Tour
This tour is a cultural relations outreach project that aims to enhance Australia's social and cultural relations with Thailand, as well as promote education links. The tour features Australian guitarist Andy Garcia, Thai guitarist Jiraphan Angsawanon and German-Thai classical guitarist Hucky Eichelmann. The ATI is co-sponsoring this collaborative project between the Australian Embassy Bangkok and Asia Music International. The tour program includes workshops on guitar technique, interpretation and skills development and a series of concerts throughout regional Thailand. In the North-East region guitar students will also have a chance to participate in a guitar competition initiated by Mahasarakham University.
Trade Policy Course
The ATI funded the attendance of a Thai Ministry of Commerce official at the Office of Trade Negotiation's Trade Policy Course in Canberra from 11 to 13 May 2011. The course covered a range of trade policy issues, as well as topics on the World Trade Organisation and Free Trade Agreements plus industry key note speakers, and negotiation skill workshops.
The Australia-ASEAN Emerging Leaders Programme (A2ELP)
This program was established as a platform to extend the capacity of emerging leaders in ASEAN and Australia and build better relationships and shared understanding across our wider region. The program introduced emerging leaders and professionals to each other in a format that encouraged them to explore regional and global issues and concerns of current common interest together. It also increased participants' appreciation and understanding of the different political, cultural, social and religious perspectives represented and exposed participants to the thinking of some senior political, business, and academic figures from around South-East Asia. The ATI funded a Thai delegate to attend this program which was held in Kuala Lumpur between 29 May and 3 June 2011.