SIU’s project: Thailand Political Base was mentioned in Bangkok Post, Thailand’s leading English-language newspaper.
Want to knowall about Thailand’s politicians?
By Achara Ashayagachat, Bangkok Post Newspaper, 23 December 2007.
A group of young professionals have launched the first online database containing everything you want to know about Thai politicians and political parties. Project leader Charoenchai Chaipiboolwong, of the Siam Intelligence Unit, said the Thailand Political Base website (www.politicalbase.in.th) would become one of the practical tools for people to monitor political figures as well as check on backgrounds and policy platforms of political parties.
The initiative was based on an idea that information is the key for ”quality politics”, he said.
”It is the people who have to stand up to protect their own interests and they can do so if they have information. When they get the information, they can share it with their colleagues and friends or create a small network to exchange this useful data,” said Mr Charoenchai, a businessman at a security firm who teamed up with his economics graduate friends from Chulalongkorn University.
Thanee Chaiwat, an economics lecturer at Chulalongkorn University’s Centre for the Development of Policy Studies, said political parties fielding candidates in today’s election had come up with similar policies, so voters need to check the backgrounds of each candidate to help them make the right decision.
The website, which is still in a fledgling stage, is sponsored by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, the Siam Intelligence Unit and Social Innovation Design.
Kan Yuenyong, another team member, said the website is expected to operate like the free encyclopaedia Wikipedia where internet users can get reliable information on certain topics.
The website now contains brief histories of about 40 prominent politicians such as Thaksin Shinawatra, Samak Sundaravej, Abhisit Vejjajiva and Chuan Leekpai.
It also has lists of cabinet members of previous governments, the 2007 constitution, facts about the Sept 19 coup and laws passed by the National Legislative Assembly.