Speaking at the ceremony, VNU President Nguyễn Kim Sơn hoped that Prof. Tan Eng Chye would share the personal and NUS experience in the NUS-pioneered activities such as innovation, startup, and influential research in the region and in the world as well as university-industry links to commercialization of research results. He also remarked that NUS had become a development model for VNU.
VNU President Nguyễn Kim Sơn proposed the two universities to review and update the content of the agreement signed in 2012, to promote cooperation in the training, research and students exchange. VNU expects to send a delegation to NUS to learn about the model of operation, management, innovation and startup.
Agreeing with VNU President on his recommendations, NUS President said that with a large number of common aspects, the two universities could implement more effective cooperation activities in the future. Concerning student exchange, Prof. Tan Eng Chye hoped that NUS and VNU would together find solutions for overcoming the difficulties, especially those relating to language, to promote this activity.
In research, NUS is ready to support VNU in training young lecturers through courses lasting from 6 months to a year. VNU’s lecturers and young faculty will be working, cooperating with NUS lecturers and professors in labs and experiments so that they can exchange and learn experiences as well as cooperate in producing joint research products.
Stating that NUS played a vital role in the Singaporean innovation ecosystem, Prof. Tan Eng Chye believed that the creation of innovative ecosystems by leading universities in every major city was essential. He expected that NUS would cooperate and support VNU – a leading Vietnam National university in building an innovation and startup ecosystem. He hoped that by linking top universities in Southeast Asia, including VNU, would help build the regional innovation and startup ecosystem and contribute to the development and prosperity in the region.
VNU and NUS leaders agreed to raise the strategic and comprehensive cooperation level between the two sides.
Presenting on “Innovation and Startup”, NUS President Tan Eng Chye said that due to the disadvantage of a small country with limited resources, Singapore relied on its human resources to develop. Citing Singapore Minister for Education Ong Ye Kung that “We are on an irreversible journey to pursue growth based on productivity and innovation”, Prof. Tan assured that in order to get more rapid development, it was necessary to focus on innovation and productivity.
"Students play an important role in the NUS’ innovation and startup ecosystem”, NUS President said. Therefore, NUS paid much attention to building entrepreneurship and promoting startup activities among its students. NUS has 10 Overseas Colleges based in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Israel and China. The 3rd year students on these campuses are able to practice at startup companies and take evening startup courses at partner universities. In the fourth year, the students return to NUS, stay in dormitories and work with students from different countries to carry out business ideas. Each year, NUS has about 350 students’ startups. Many companies founded by NUS alumni are very successful such as: Carousell, patsnap, shopback …
For graduate students and fellows, NUS is willing to provide free workplaces and enable them to carry out academic activities. NUS also has a business incubation that assists professors, trainers, and students not only to connect with enterprises, but also to adapt their ideas to match the needs of the market.
Regularly organizing events on innovation, creating conditions for students to get access to NUS technologies, attracting venture capital funds ... are other experiences shared by Prof. Tan. In addition to the summer startups training courses for students, he also recommended organizing new startup idea contests for other participants.