MAKATI CITY, 8 May 2019. — The Asian Institute of Management has won the Times
Higher Education (THE) Technological Innovation of the Year trophy at the inaugural
THE Awards Asia.
Unlike the THE World University Rankings which are based only on data points, these
awards are an opportunity for institutions of all shapes and sizes, from all corners of the
continent to share their extraordinary stories of success with a wider audience.
The award for Technological Innovation of the Year was hailed as “exemplary” by the
judges for its multifaceted approach to engagement within research.
Set up in March 2018 to complement its existing academic programs, AIM’s Analytics,
Computing and Complex Systems (ACCeSs@AIM) laboratory seeks to bridge the gap
between theory and practice for research-led teaching in higher education.
“I am a big believer in promoting academe-industry-government partnerships through
ACCeSs@AIM to fast-track nation-building. In advocating the use of data science,
artificial intelligence, and computational models, ACCeSs@AIM is AIM’s concrete step
towards improving the economy of developing countries in ASEAN and promoting
partnerships that will directly impact business, society, and communities,” said
Professor Christopher Monterola, Aboitiz Chair in Data Science, Head of the Aboitiz
School of Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship, and Executive Managing
Director of ACCeSs@AIM.
The lab, which is the first of its kind in the country, boasts of a multidisciplinary team of
experienced scientists working with a 500-teraflop supercomputer – optimized for
artificial intelligence technology and said to be the fastest in the Philippines. Its
impressive resources support the teaching and learning of the Institute’s 106 Master of Science in Data Science (MSDS) students, providing them with real-world scenarios
and direct links to industry partners.
“It is certainly not easy to find properly trained data scientists, in the Philippines or
elsewhere. ACCeSs@AIM and the MSDS program hope to provide the region with welltrained, proactive data science leaders who can create practical solutions to the
multifaceted challenges faced by industries and governments,” added Monterola.
Since its launch in 2018, ACCeSs@AIM has exemplified how collaborations across
private industry, government agencies and other third-party research organizations can
succeed and be impactful.
“Our goal is to empower business leaders and managers, government officials, and
policymakers to make data-driven decisions that go beyond business in order to make a
positive impact within society,” emphasized AIM President and Dean Jikyeong Kang,
“and ACCeSs@AIM finds innovative ways to make this happen.”
Professor Erika Legara, Aboitiz Chair in Data Science, MSDS Academic Program
Director, and Deputy Managing Director at ACCeSs@AIM, was enthusiastic about the
added validation the team has received for all their efforts. “We are honored and
grateful for this recognition from THE Awards Asia. In less than a year, ACCeSs@AIM
has already produced relevant research for select industries and has deployed decisionsupport platforms for our stakeholders. Building the platforms demanded
implementation of advanced-level analytics and formulation of mathematical and
mechanism-based models, not to mention a true understanding of business needs. I am
happy that we’re helping build this culture of R&D and academia-industry partnership
here at home. Thank you, Jikyeong, Chris, and AIM, for the enabling environment!
Thanks too to our industry partners who believe in R&D and our group’s ability to
The judges were impressed by the scale of ambition and the impact already achieved
by AIM, and they praised the project for its support of the national development of the
ACCeSs@AIM “has given students a vital ability to learn with leading-edge technology
that they can take into their future employment,” the judges said, adding that the project
was an “exemplary initiative that perfectly illustrates strategic vision and technical
innovation, creating positive opportunities for advancement.”
Professor Michael Purugganan, a Filipino-American biologist and Dean for Science at
New York University, commended AIM. “To anyone who says the Philippines is lagging
behind in STEM education, this is a great counterexample. It shows what dedicated and
brilliant faculty, resources, and vision can do to propel us forward. Congratulations!
Well-deserved. An inspiration and, hopefully, a model.”
For THE editor John Gill, “The THE Asia Awards have shone a light on the exceptional
achievements of universities across the continent. The winners include institutions from
China, Singapore, Iraq, South Korea, and the Philippines; they include names that will
be known to all as among the best in the world, and others that have performed nearmiracles in times of great hardship. All demonstrate what transformational work
universities do, whether in teaching or research, supporting students or building bridges
and partnerships across borders. All are worthy winners of these prestigious awards.”
The full list of this year’s winners is below, and profiles of their winning entries can be
●Outstanding Support for Students: University of Kirkuk
●International Strategy of the Year: Zhejiang University
●Technological Innovation of the Year: Asian Institute of Management
●Teaching and Learning Strategy of the Year: Yonsei University
●Leadership and Management Team of the Year: National University of Singapore
For more coverage of the awards, including photos from the ceremony, please visit
Details are also online at Times Higher Education. The awards will feature in next
week’s issue of THE magazine.
About the Asian Institute of Management
The Asian Institute of Management is a pioneering management school with an immersive,
supportive, and practitioner-oriented culture that develops managers, entrepreneurs, and leaders
who deliver meaningful growth the Asian business and society.
Founded in 1968 by a consortium of prominent business leaders, professors of the Harvard
Business School and leading Philippine academic institutions, AIM offers postgraduate degree
programs and certificate courses in business, entrepreneurship, innovation, data science, and
development management which have helped its alumni reach leadership positions worldwide.
AIM is the first school in Southeast Asia to achieve accreditation from the US-based Association to
Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), which is founded on the world’s highest
More information about AIM can be found at http://www.aim.edu.
MAKATI CITY, 8 May 2019 — The Asian Institute of Management (AIM), through its Scientific
Research Foundation (AIM-SRF), received today a donation worth more than half a billion
pesos (USD10 million) from Aboitiz Foundation. The gift will support two Data Science
Professorial Chairs, an interest-free student loan program, and future facilities improvement of
AIM’s newly named Aboitiz School of Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship (ASITE).
“Aboitiz Foundation and AIM have a shared vision of thought leadership within the education,
innovation, and entrepreneurship ecosystem. This gift cements the beginning of a long-term
partnership to develop innovation- and technology-oriented mangers, leaders, and
entrepreneurs who will take the lead in transforming Asian business and society,” says AIM
President and Dean Jikyeong Kang. “We are extremely grateful to the Aboitiz family for
empowering AIM to continue to generate and sustain our mission of providing this region with
future-ready leaders who can create value for their organizations and the communities within
which they operate.”
Aboitiz Foundation’s contribution will lead to the establishment of two endowed professorial
chairs, to be known as the Aboitiz Chair in Data Science, which will be held by the School’s
world-class faculty members, Prof. Christopher Monterola and Prof. Erika Fille Legara. Prof.
Monterola is concurrently Head of the Aboitiz School of Innovation, Technology, and
Entrepreneurship and Executive Managing Director of AIM’s corporate lab, ACCeSs@AIM. Prof.
Legara is the Academic Program Director of the Aboitiz School’s Master of Science in Data
Science (MSDS) program, and Deputy Managing Director of ACCeSs@AIM.
The donation will also fund the zero-interest Aboitiz Student Loan Program (ASLP) for the
Master of Science in Data Science (MSDS) and the Master of Science in Innovation and
Business (MSIB) degree programs of the Aboitiz School, thereby expanding the Institute’s social
inclusiveness by helping to support deserving students who do not have the financial resources
to attend an international institution.
Mr. Erramon Aboitiz, Chairman of the Board of Aboitiz Foundation, notes that, “Over the past 50
years, AIM has contributed immensely to sustaining the growth of businesses and societies, not
only in the Philippines but in Asia, by developing professional, entrepreneurial, and socially
responsible managers and leaders. Similarly, sustainability is at the core of our growth story
anchored on our philosophy that we can do well by doing good, always making the right longterm decisions that balance the interests of people, planet, and profit.”
“With the Aboitiz 100th Anniversary Commitment Fund, we hope that this new innovationfocused school will be able to benefit AIM as it leads and blazes new trails, to inspire real-world
learning, and to transform principled leaders,” Aboitiz added
The endowment underscores the Aboitiz Foundation’s abiding advocacy in education, and
provides the much-needed stimulus for moving the country forward in terms of addressing the
challenges of Industry 4.0. “This gift marks a significant milestone in Philippine philanthropy —
we believe it stands as the largest cash donation given to an educational institution in the
Philippines, and we hope that the work Aboitiz Foundation and AIM do together raises the
educational standard in the Philippines and contributes toward building and strengthening the
emerging economies within the region,” says AIM Chairman of the Board, Mr. Peter Garrucho,
Lately, AIM has received an outpouring of support for its programs, with some of the notable
contributions coming from global leaders in the technology industry, such as Dr. Narayana
Murthy, Founder of Infosys, Ltd. and Member of the AIM Board of Governors; Mr. Stan Shih,
Founder and Honorary Chairman of Acer and also a Member of the AIM Board of Governors;
and Mr. Peter Garrucho, Jr., OBE, Chairman of the AIM Board of Trustees. Each of them has
donated over USD250,000 in 2018. Topping this up, Mr. Shih and Mr. Garrucho have each
pledged USD1 million to AIM.
In addition to being home to many world-class data scientists and engineers, the Aboitiz
School’s Analytics, Computing, and Complex Systems (ACCeSs@AIM) laboratory also boasts
of a 500-teraflop supercomputer donated by Mr. Shih of Acer. The ACCeS@AIM lab is meant to
lead in the development of actionable insights and the creation of practical solutions to
challenges experienced by both industries and governments.
The Aboitiz Foundation-AIM partnership, which coincides with the tail-end of AIM’s 50th
anniversary celebrations, and marks the kick-off of the Aboitiz Group’s 100th anniversary in
2020, serves as a fitting manifestation of each one’s mutual commitment toward advancing
business and management excellence in the Philippines and throughout Asia.
The Asian Institute of Management (AIM) is an Asian pioneer in management education. The Institute
was founded in 1968 by a consortium of prominent business leaders, Philippine academic institutions,
and professors of the Harvard Business School.
Throughout its history, the Institute has sought to empower students to thrive in challenging, rapidly
shifting environments. It achieves this by encouraging a more considerate, effective, and sustainable
approach to business in society.
Contact Person: Ma. Filomena “Tiking” Alegre | falegre@AIM.EDU | T: +63 2 892-4011 Ext. 1881
Aboitiz Foundation is the corporate foundation of the Aboitiz Group. Established in 1988, we continue to
pursue our mission to help people help themselves, implementing corporate social responsibility
interventions especially in communities where Aboitiz companies operate. We focus our efforts on
education, enterprise development, environment, health and well-being, as well as disaster preparedness
Contact Person: Ms. Adrianne Marie C. Alazas | firstname.lastname@example.org | (T: +63 2 886-2638