Thursday, January 9, 2014

Push for Think Tanks in Myanmar

Eleven, a Myanmar-based news company, is calling for the "emergence of" think tanks in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma.

According to the latest University of Pennsylvania think tank rankings, there is "no known think tank" in Myanmar.  It is among a handful of countries with no known think tank, according to the survey.

That said, the US Institute of Peace (USIP) and others have recently mentioned  and worked with a new "think tank" in Myanmar called the Myanmar Development Resources Institute (MDRI).

MDRI was formally proposed to President Thein Sein by Dr. Muang Myint (presidential advisor on economic affairs) at a workshop held in Naypyitaw Myanmar in May 2011.

In a previous Think Tank Quickies, Think Tank Watch mentioned an article that said India and Myanmar were forging links between think tanks.  The article mentions a "think tank" called the Myanmar Institute of Strategic and International Studies (MISIS), which was founded in 1992.

There has also been mention of Rangoon-based policy "think tank" Myanmar Egress.

Here is an interested article titled "From Dissident to Contributor: New Think Tanks Help Myanmar's Transition to Democracy," which mentions MDRI and several of think tanks or think tank-like entities.

Of course, the debate regarding whether or not Myanmar actually has a think tank all depends on ones definition of "think tank."

Here is a previous Think Tank Watch post about Aung San Suu Kyi hitting the think tank circuit in the US.