Home > About K.I.Asia

About us

The Kenan Institute Asia (K.I.Asia) is a leading Thailand-based, non-profit organization serving the sustainable development needs of Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Lao PDR.


Our History

K.I.Asia was established on the understanding that the challenges facing Southeast Asia could be best addressed through free enterprise mechanisms, boundary-spanning partnerships and expertise gained through practical development experience.

Evolving from a project funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) mission in Thailand, K.I.Asia was founded as an independent non-profit organization in 1996. The Thai government joined USAID, the William R. Kenan Jr. Charitable Trust and the Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise at the University of North Carolina to provide an endowment for the new institute. In 1999, K.I.Asia was granted charitable status by the Thai government, while the U.S. government granted K.I.Asia IRS 501(c)3 equivalency status.

Today, K.I.Asia’s team of professionals draws upon the expertise and experience gained over more than a decade of activities to support sustainable development throughout Southeast Asia, with a special emphasis on Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Lao PDR.

Our Activities

K.I.Asia’s experienced development experts specialize in designing, managing and implementing sustainable development programs on behalf of our corporate, government and multilateral clients in five main areas: entrepreneurship, business and economic development; public health; youth development and innovative education; sustainable tourism; and corporate social responsibility (CSR).

With over 12 years of on-the-ground experience in the region, K.I.Asia has been entrusted to implement and manage over US $34 million in projects from government and leading corporations and multilateral organizations. 

Our Professional Team

K.I.Asia maintains an in-house team of over 50 professionals, 38 of whom have attained at least a Master’s Degree or higher. In keeping with our philosophy of leveraging private sector resources to meet development needs, our dedicated team of development specialists consists of former bankers, health professionals, engineers, IT specialists, educators, and government officials.

K.I.Asia also has external capacity in the form of our six Senior Associates, who work on a project-by-project basis, as well as numerous international contract consultants from a range of professional disciplines. Finally, K.I.Asia has an extensive network of business, academic and government professionals who have benefited from K.I.Asia program activities and now provide guidance and support on select projects.