The Da Nang International Institute of Technology (DNIIT) was established two years ago as an autonomous entity within the University of Danang with the support of the Université Côte d'Azur Initiative of Excellence (IDEX) and the Francophone University Agency (AUF). It has benefited from the support of the relevant Vietnamese and French ministries.

The philosophy behind DNIIT is driven by the international dimension of the IDEX; to promote transdisciplinarity, innovation, and scientific responses to societal and territorial challenges. The institute is, above all, an international collaborative platform that drives project-teams. The latter carry out applied research, which extends to innovation and training activities. It is therefore a question of proposing a new type of international collaboration, which decompartmentalizes the academic activities with a view to building true thematic ecosystems focused on solving societal problems. These themes are jointly identified by the regional participants and stakeholders from the Côte d'Azur and Da Nang. They correspond to societal themes that have been identified by the IDEX: digital challenges such as artificial intelligence and the internet of things, smart territories and sustainable development, health, well-being and aging.

The outcomes of DNIIT's activities for these first two years of existence seem very promising. These include:

  • The creation of 6 UCA-UD mixed-project teams for applied research, which are carrying out around a dozen projects co-financed by various institutions.
  • The organization of two special sessions at two international IEEE conferences, an international summer school, three symposia or weeks of scientific seminars in Danang.
  • The implementation of two annual competitive funding campaigns for students and faculty of the UD for innovative projects targeting the theme of the "Smart-Campus". This action is intended to be extended to the entire city of Danang.
  • The delocalization of a UCA master's program and four short courses on new technologies for academics and professionals.
  • The organization of more than 103 weeks of faculty visits between the two universities through the alignment of various sources of funding.
  • The organization of more than 300 months of student visits between the two universities, at all levels and in all disciplines, again using various sources of funding.
Scientific productivity related to DNIIIT themes involving researchers from both universities is notable:
  • Six doctoral theses defended at UCA by UD personnel,
  • nine articles in specialized scientific journals,
  • twenty-seven articles presented at the specialized conferences with selection committees,
  • twenty-six internship reports (Master and DUT) and a research report.
These encouraging results allow us to consider new goals for the next two years, including:
  • Obtaining a CNRS Associated International Laboratory label between the CNRS UMR I3S and UCA LEAT on one the hand and DNIIT and the Computer Science Center of the Academy of Science and Technology of Vietnam on the other hand.
  • The setting up of a recruitment office for UCA Graduate Schools of Research.
  • Broadening the scope of collaboration to include new disciplines.
  • Improved self-financing by developing innovative services for students and companies and professional training contracts.
In all, DNIIT is a young institute that can grow rapidly in this fast-growing region of the world, as it seeks to share knowledge and values. UCA, its IDEX and the AUF are investing in the right place--that is my deep conviction.

Prof. Nhan Le Thanh

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