Not only was Chiang Mai University the first regional university established following the government’s policy, but it was also the first university in the Northern region to open a faculty of veterinary medicine to produce veterinary graduates and professionals. CMU is committed to fulfilling its missions in academic service provision and veterinary research, especially on large animals like elephants, which have always been a priority for CMU in terms of care, rescue, conservation, research, and academic collaboration with domestic and international institutions. This has contributed to the establishment of the Centre of Elephant and Wildlife Research and a strong team of veterinary professionals and researchers, leading CMU to be ranked sixth in the word in publications and expertise on elephants.
Expertscape is a ranking company that specialises in biomedical sciences with a website and tools to analyse medical data worldwide from publications on PubMed. After reviewing a pool of data that spans 10 years (2011 - 2021) from more than 5,000 papers and 4,000 researchers in the field of elephants, Expertscape ranked Assoc. Prof. Dr. Chatchote Thitaram, D.V.M., from the Centre of Elephant and Wildlife Research, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, CMU, in the world’s top 1% (sixth place) with the highest number of publications. Dr. Thitaram is now included in a shortlist of ‘experts’ in the field. Also included in the list were Asst. Prof. Dr. Chaleamchat Somgird, D.V.M., Dr. Pakkanut Bansiddhi, D.V.M., Assoc. Prof. Dr. Korakot Nganvongpanit, D.V.M., Assoc. Prof. Dr. Veerasak Punyapornwithaya, D.V.M., Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kidsadagon Pringproa, D.V.M., and Asst. Prof. Dr. Jaruwan Khonmee, D.V.M.. The top spot was awarded to Dr. Janine L Brown from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, USA, who received an Honourary Doctorate on Veterinary Medicine from Chiang Mai University in early 2020.
CMU’s veterinary team’s missions and intentions have been well illustrated by the achievements of the Centre of Elephant and Wildlife Research, led by Dr. Chatchote Thitaram - including pioneering a frozen plasma collection method to save injured elephants for the first time in Thailand, saving elephants in critical conditions, looking after the well-being of elephants and elephant communities, and establishing international academic collaboration and producing research on the subject. This is a testament to CMU’s commitment to elephant conservation for sustainability and international recognition.