Challenges of Urbanization in East Asia

Vol1is2 july 16_Cover with index-page-001

Announcing: Palasak, Ratana and John Walsh, “Challenges of Urbanization in East Asia,” Pacific Business Review International, Vol.9, No.1 (July, 2016), pp.101-8, available at:


This paper addresses the issues surrounding urbanization in the East Asian region. The paper begins by considering the reasons for urbanization and, therefore, the nature and shape of that urbanization. It then goes on to consider the various impacts of the phenomenon as they have affected social and workplace relations, as a result of changes in lifestyles and environment. This leads to the consideration of the agglomeration effects of urbanization and the possibilities and prospects for networked cities in the region. It is concluded that numerous structural and systemic changes must be made by nearly every state in the region before the benefits of networked and smart cities can be harvested.


Collaborative Provision of Graduate Education in CLMV: Case of Thailand’s Private Universities


Announcing: Sujarittanonta, Lavanchawee, kittichok Nithisathian and John Walsh, “Collaborative Provision of Graduate Education in CLMV: Case of Thailand’s Private Universities,” Journal of Educational and Vocational Research, Vol.7, No.2 (2016), pp.49-57, available at:


Education entails investments in time and money from the students and, therefore, the choices of degree programs and university names are critical for students and their future careers. The demand for foreign education in the CLMV (i.e. Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam) market is fast expanding, especially for international graduate programs. Equipped with foreign degrees, the human resources of the host CLMV countries are ready for international jobs with international standards. This situation attracts investments by foreign universities to enter CLMV countries to offer degree programs, such as MBA, MPA and PhD. While Western universities are internationally recognized, the success of Asian universities operating within CLMV has not been studied. Consequently, this paper reports on research examining the success of Thai private universities that operate in CLMV countries, in particular Mynmar, which has only recently opened up to the world, as well as the developing prospects for Vietnam. Lao PDR and Cambodia. Data is collected through in-depth interviews of managers and students of international partner institutions of the host countries, through which Thai universities offer graduate degree programs. It is found that private Thai degree programs are welcomed in CLMV countries, while Thai degrees are favored over international Western degrees in terms of economic affordability and preferred over Chinese degree programs due to the socio-cultural perception that Chinese products are doubtful in quality. This is not surprising, considering that a 2014 study by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) reported that among middle-income countries of Asia, Thailand and Malaysia lead the region when it comes to providing graduate education.
Keywords: Education, CLMV, private universities, quality

The 9th International Conference on Management, Finance and Entrepreneurship and the 8th International Conference on Global Business Environment

The 9th International Conference on Management, Finance and Entrepreneurship and the 8th International Conference on Global Business Environment were held concurrently at Shinawatra University, Bangkok, Thailand on 23rd July, 2016 at the graduate campus at the BBD Building on Viphawadi-Rangsit Road. The event was successful and better attended than most previous conferences SIU has hosted. Nearly 50 academic papers were scheduled for presentation.

Keynote speakers Hon. Prof. Dr. Charnvit Kotheeranurak and Dr. Somprasong Boonyachai (all photos by the author)

Two excellent keynote speeches helped to set the tone for the day. Hon. Prof. Dr. Charnvit Kotheeranurak spoke on the subject of Medicine 4.0, taking the theme of a new generation of medical treatments and conditions applying to the contemporary world and drew implications from that. Subsequently, Dr. Somprasong Boonyachai spoke on the subject of the digital economy, which is a subject on which he could speak authoritatively, given his extensive experience with AIS and now InTouch Holdings. The audience warmly appreciated both speakers. Ajarn Chanchai Bunchapattanasakda graciously agreed to open proceedings.
The remainder of the day was occupied by the technical sessions, in which academics from a number of different countries presented their research with the audience. Speakers represented, in addition to Thailand, Nepal, Myanmar, South Africa, Ghana, Germany, the UK and Indonesia, among others.

Dr. Petcharat Lovichakorntikul and Dr. Sirirat Ngamsang help to fly the flag for SIU.

Three of our SIU students from Myanmar were able to attend, two of whom – Ms Khin Kyin Zin and Daw Sandi Win – were presenting academic work for the first time, which is always a somewhat daunting task.


Ms Khin Kyin Zin, Mr. Soe Myint Than and Daw Sandi Win presented their research conducted at the Mandalay campus of SIU.

The range of topics presented was wide, ranging from work-like balance among women in positions of management to healthcare company development, communication, business ethics, stock market analysis and marketing. As ever, we endeavoured to maintain a harmonious, friendly atmosphere in which academics and students could exchange knowledge and ideas and learn about one another’s work.

I am grateful to all those who attended, including Dr. Ijaz who was representing our partner the International Foundation for Research and Development ( and our own conference team, led by Aj Ratana Palasak and Dr. Wilaiporn Lao-Hakosol. As usual, staunch support was received from the library team, especially Aj. Boonta Wisswaapaisal and K Suntirach Lerdmanee. Thanks are also due to the IT and domestic teams.

John Walsh, Shinawatra University

Promoting Cluster and Value Chain Development in Three Agricultural Sectors in Lao PDR


I attended the 5th International Conference on Lao Studies held at the Tha Prachan campus of Thammasat University here in Bangkok. The conference went quite well – I was only able to attend the second day, although of course everybody was being careful about what they were saying. More information on the conference is available here.

I could not present my paper on special economic zones but I was able to present (with co-author Nittana Southiseng, who was not able to attend):

Promoting Cluster and Value Chain Development in Three Agricultural Sectors in Lao PDR


Research was conducted into three agricultural sectors in Lao PDR to determine the extent to which clusters of complementary activities had been forming and how value chains were performing. The sectors were organic rice, organic vegetables and white charcoal (bintochan). Organic agriculture is a potentially important area for Lao PDR, a low income country, since many farmers operate on a de facto organic basis anyway, although certification is not available domestically. In common with white charcoal, organic produce will mainly be intended for export, primarily to or through partners in Thailand since Lao PDR is a landlocked country and one at a disadvantage, therefore, concerning export prices. The three sectors studied are at a comparatively early stage of development and each has some significant production issues yet to overcome. Respondents within production groups continue to focus on personal relationships and group management issues, while also acknowledging lack of access to markets, skills and capital that are common to small businesses around the world. Government agencies lack resources and technical capacity necessary to help link production groups to markets on an advantageous basis and the limited nature of the domestic market means that few well-equipped entrepreneurs have been attracted to take a role. However, some small private networks have been created in the white charcoal sector to move the products to Japan and Korea, where they are greatly valued as fuel for barbecues in the restaurant industry. For vegetables and rice, it will be necessary to establish cross-border relationships with operators in neighbouring Thailand, Vietnam and China, where there are large domestic markets, preferably on an equitable basis. It is not clear how this should best be approached from the perspective of public sector agencies, which tend to feature people who are suspicious of private sector organizations and of the potential for market relations to exert a form of neo-colonialism over what are considered to be national interests. Recommendations are made at various levels as to how networks can be established and existing ones strengthened. Adding new and more profitable stages to value chains, through issues such as packaging and branding, is also discussed.

Keywords: agriculture, clusters, Lao PDR, organic agriculture, value chains

Nittana Southiseng, SME Development Advisor, GIZ-RELATED project, Vientiane Lao PDR

John Walsh, Director, SIU Research Centre, Shinawatra University, Thailand

This research project was supported by a grant from the Economic Research Institute of Trade of the government of the Lao PDR.

Creative Industries and Industrial Policy in Korea and Southeast Asia

I attended the Bangkok University Communication Arts International Conference Creative Industries in Asia: Innovating within Constraints, 1st-2nd July 2016, which was succesfully held here in Bangkok. More details on the conference are available here.

My paper was entitled “Creative Industries and Industrial Policy in Korea and Southeast Asia,” and here is the:


One of the most important means by which the Republic of Korea (ROK) was able to escape from the Middle Income Trap was through the creation and implementation of the Hallyu, which was a wave of inter-related forms of cultural production supported and promoted by government. Hallyu was successful, at least in part, because of the freedom of expression won by the Korean people in the struggle for democracy. Its various forms, including popular music, television, dance, food, cosmetics and other consumer goods can be complementary in nature and were supported by various incentives, subsidies and other forms of industrial policy. Some of these policies have been recreated for application in other countries of East and Southeast Asia, while others have yet to be evaluated or adopted. In other cases, policies have been employed which have actively constrained creativity, sometimes for justifiable state-level reasons and sometimes not. This paper outlines the different forms of industrial policy that have been employed to affect creative industries, inspired by the Korean example and using Southeast Asia as the primary area of investigation. Implications are drawn from the analysis as to which kinds of policies are likely to be successful in which kinds of policy regimes and political systems. Social, cultural and religious constraints to the expression of the creative industries in the region are also discussed and possibilities of change considered.

Keywords: creative industries, hallyu, industrial policy, Korea, Southeast Asia

The full-text paper has been submitted and the proceedings are being prepared for publication even as we speak.

The Low Carbon Tourism Paradox: Evidence from Koh Mak



Apivantanaporn, Thanan and John Walsh, “The Low Carbon Tourism Paradox: Evidence from Koh Mak,” Quaestus, Vol.9 (June, 2016), pp.9-20, available at:


Low carbon tourism management appears to be a contradictory concept. After all, tourism involves travel for purposes of leisure and recreation and that travel, under current technological conditions, inevitably produces carbon emissions. This is quite in addition to the environmental consequences of actions taken in the tourism resort destination or destinations. However, there are actions that can be taken to mitigate negative environmental consequences and some which can even aspire to have a negative overall effect on carbon emissions. Many of these activities take place on the supply side of the tourism industry, such as local sourcing of food and beverage items, locally-produced goods and services and minimally invasive architecture and development. This paper explores the nature of low carbon tourism destination management and highlights the more practical and valuable applications in the context of the low carbon campaign being organized by the Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Association (DASTA) in Thailand, with a particular focus on the case study island of Koh Mak. Various recommendations are made in the light of the analysis and the implications of preparing low carbon tourism destination activities on a small island are considered. Keywords: destination management, low carbon tourism management, island, Thailand, tourism

SIU Journal of Management, Vol.6, No.1 (June, 2016)

The SIU Journal of Management, Vol.6, No.1 (June, 2016) has now been published. It is available here: SIU JM 6.1 June 2016 Full.

Here is the table of contents:


Volume 6, Number 1, June, 2016
Editor’s Introduction (Editor Introduction)  4


1. Location Factors and Their Performance Measures for a Sustainable Urban Freight Consolidation Centre (UFCC) – Afzal Mohammad Khaled and Zahurul Zlam (Afzal Zahurul UFCC)  7
2. Do Regulations Impact on CSR Delivery by Corporates? A Case Study of India – Shailja Dixit (6.1. Dixit)  31
3. Exploring the Relationship between Course Curriculum and Leadership Skills Development among Business Graduates in Bangladesh – Mohammad Howladar (61. Howladar)  53
4. Internet, Intranets and Extranets in Organizations: An Integrative Literature – Mahmoud Moussa (6.1. Moussa)  80


The 8th International Conference on Management, Finance and Entrepreneurship and the  10th International Conference on Economics and Social Sciences (The 8th International Conference on Management)  116


1. Event by Slavoj Zizek – John Walsh (Zizek Event)  120
2. Inequality and the 1% by Danny Dorling – John Walsh (Dorling Inequality)  123
3. Spatial Politics and Economic Development in the Mekong Sub-Region by Chayan Vaddhanaphuti and Amporn Jirattikorn, eds. – John Walsh (Chayan Vaddhanaphuti and Amporn Jirattikor) 127

CALL FOR PAPERS                                                                                                                        131

AUTHOR’S GUIDELINES                                                                                                             133

ABOUT SHINAWATRA UNIVERSITY                                                                                        135

EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD                                                                                                  137