Declaration UKM as Research University

On 11 October 2006, the Government declared UKM as a research university. The declaration letter was presented by the YAB Deputy Prime Minister on 2 August 2007. This declaration followed the presentation of the 9th Malaysia Plan which identified UKM as one of the four research universities in the country. The National Higher Education Strategic Plan, launched on 27 August 2007, is an important step in determining the direction of a research university through seven strategic thrusts, namely:

  1. Expand access and increase equity.
  2. Improving the quality of teaching and learning.
  3. Strengthen research and innovation.
  4. Empowering institutions of higher learning.
  5. Intensify internationalization.
  6. Cultivating lifelong learning.
  7. Strengthen the delivery system of the Ministry of Higher Education.

The Action Plan outlines the indicators of success in enhancing research in universities and its integration into the national innovation system. This includes efforts to ensure an efficient, effective and transparent system of governance that leads to autonomy, provide adequate resources and good infrastructure, as well as encourage collaboration between universities and other actors in the national innovation system.

Rationale of Creating a Research University

The rationale for creating a Research University is to accelerate the process of transition to a knowledge-based economy (k-economy) as a key engine of growth that is globally competitive. This shift is needed for us to be ready to participate in the transition of the current world socio -economic scenario, which is from large investments to knowledge -intensive activities that generate innovation in goods and services that meet global standards and simultaneously increase national wealth and increase income and quality of life. Knowledge -intensive activities rely on the ability to generate and manage knowledge including research and development, licensing efforts and intellectual property mastery. The generation of various technologies, including products, processes and strategies with a high rate of innovation enhances the country’s competitiveness.

To succeed in the k-economy, we need to build k-economy assets and capital. The Research University is one of the most important institutions for producing human capital that can lead intellectual and technological leadership. It is also important to shape the critical time of research to elevate our country as a nation of technology creators. Research Universities are also a vehicle to accelerate development as they intelligently transfer the knowledge generated to effective use through strong networks with national innovation systems.