Centre for Engineering Excellence: Preparing for the Future through Collaboration
Thirty-five years since the beginning of the electronics and electrical engineering industry in Penang, it now faces a crossroad: to continue along the manufacturing path that is has followed since the beginning or to move up value chain by re-inventing itself as a new nexus for engineering creativity and innovations.
The original path appear to no longer be feasible for Penang given the rapid rise of other lower-cost centres in Asia especially China. Re-inventing the engineering-based Penang industry therefore appears to be the only option.
Khazanah Nasional Berhad (KNB), seeing this need through their study of and after consultations with the Penang industry, had approached USM with a concept note for the establishment of the centre for Engineering Excellence (CEE) in January 2009. With the involvement of academia together with multinationals and Malaysian companies, CEE will not only spearhead the re-development of Penang as a new centre of discovery and innovations in engineering but it will be also used as a centre for collaboration to forge closer and more meaningful technology learning and development experiences for the region. CEE will not just be an opportunity for USM and Penang but will also be an opportunity for leading engineering institutions of higher learning in the region to extend their learning experience into USM and the companies operating in Penang, through joint research projects, emplacement of academics and post graduate students and other forms of collaboration which could yield significant creation, innovation and dissemination of knowledge for all parties.
A visit by staff from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur to USM’s Main and Engineering Campuses on 5th May 2009 became the starting point for a journey of collaboration between USM and IIT Kanpur. The journey continued with a return visit by USM delegates to IIT Kanpur on 21st August 2009 and the collaboration officially begun through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding 22nd August 2009 at IIT Kanpur that spells out the intention of both parties to jointly, and together with the Penang-based industry, creates and develop CEE.
CEE will have national and international impacts through its objectives such as:
To achieve these objectives, CEE has planned to implement various activities including:
As the next step, USM, KNB and the industry prepared a Request for Proposal (RFP) to select consultants that will prepare a detailed plan for creation of CEE. This selection of the consultant is expected to be completed in June 2010.
The aspiration to create and nurture local engineers with world class professional and leadership’s qualities for multinational and local companies will inspire CEE to become one of the best centres for knowledge discovery and innovation in Malaysia and the world.
For further information and enquiries please contact us at:
Professor Dr. Abdul Rahman Mohamed
Tel: 604- 599 5005/5004
Puan Fakriah Jamaluddin
Tel : 604 – 594 1021Fax : 604-594 1038