Administrative and Academic Staff

Administrative and Academic staff of the IRCP listed in alphabetical order:



wutthichula-189X300Wutthichula Khunpatwattana

Head, Student Mobility Office
+66 53-241-255 ext 7127

Wutthichula Khunpatwatana is a lecturer in the Faculty of Economics at Payap. He earned his bachelor degree in Accounting from Chiang Mai University in 1993. He works with IRCP to facilitate student and faculty exchange between Payap and institutions all over the world.

He started his career at Thai Cathode Ray Tube Co., Ltd. in Chonburi Province and at Pongpan Furniture Ltd. Part. as an accountant and began to think about how to develop local businesses or SME’s to make them competitive and able to survive in the market. This interest led him to enroll in the Economic Policy Management Program at Columbia University in New York. He earned his Masters Degree within a year, gaining trainee experience at the New York Branch of Bangkok Bank Co., Ltd.

As Thailand had suffered from the collapse in 1997 known as Tom Yum Kung Crisis, his family business also struggled and asked him to help re-structure the organization, appointing him as a manager. Over the next 10 years working there, he continued to think about the power of knowledge. After revising and balancing the business, he realized his passion for helping businesses and young entrepreneurs and decided to pursue a teaching career. He had learned that business is not only making money but also relating to management, source, plan, money, envionment, and above all good governance and moral of business. These aspects of business are key to success and everyday, he gets to help business students become successful.

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aj-ly2Dr. Le Ngoc Bich Ly

Faculty member of the Peacebuilding Program

+66 620543536

Le Ngoc Bich Ly  earned her Bachelor’s Degree in English at Can Tho University in Vietnam in 2004 and her Master’s Degree in Divinity at Payap University in Chaing Mai, Thailand in 2011. She received her PhD degree in Inter-religious studies at the Indonesian Consortium for Religious Studies at Gadjah Mada University in February 2017. Her first book is Struggles for Women-Inclusive Leadership in Toraja Church in Indonesia and the Evangelical Church of Vietnam: Agency and Structural Change (2017). Her research interests are in religious philosophy, gender and interfaith peacebuilding.

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Dr. Somboon Panyakom
+66 86-586135

Dr. Somboon Panyakom has served at Payap University since 1997 and as Dean of the International College for the past four years. Prior to his service at Payap University, he served with Compassion International as Country Director for Thailand.
Dr. Somboon received his BA in Political Sciences from Ramkamheang University, Bangkok, MA in Social Administration from Thammasat University, Bangkok and his doctoral studies in Social and Behavioral Science at the University of Queensland, Australia. In addition to being a core faculty of the Peace Studies Program, Dr. Somboon is also a lecturer in the International Masters in Business Administration (IMBA) Program.
As a Karen, his worldview has been shaped by the plight of his people group. This rich background has offered Dr. Somboon a passion for creating avenues for the oppressed to develop self-sustaining structures for their communities. His research area involves Social Entrepreneurship for poverty reduction and Business for Peace (B4P).

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Goong-189X300Tannipa Poungjukta

Administrative Assistant
+66 53-241-255 ext 7880

Tannipa Poungjukta (Kung) has served at Payap University since 1993.  Before joining IRCP in 2015, she served on the staff of the Spiritual & Community Life Department of Payap University where she taught the ethics course which is part of Payap’s core curriculum, counseled and mentored students, led cell groups and provided administrative support for the department.  In her current capacity at IRCP, she provides administrative assistance to the IRCP team, manages all the administrative details of the institute and liaisons with local Christian leaders.  She also continues to teach the ethics course while accepting various speaking engagements.  In her spare time, she serves in her home congregation, the Sripanalai Church, as an elder, teacher and board chair.  Ms. Kung completed her MA in Christianity Theology from McGilvary College of Divinity, Payap University.

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pim2Chanpim Rawin

Program Coordinator
+66 53-241-255 ext 7882

Chanpim Rawin or Pim in short, received her Bachelor degree in French from Chiang Mai University and her Master degree in Educational Administration from Naresuan University. Before starting university life, she received an American Field Service (AFS) scholarship to study in America for a year and went back for another two years to earn a High School Diploma at Rolling Hills High School in California.

Pim started her first career at Japan Airlines (JAL) in the position of Reservation and Ticketing in Hawaii and then transferred to Korea. After deciding to settle down in Chiang Mai, she began her teaching career in Lanna Commercial College. During that time, she also worked as a part-time English instructor in Rachapat University and was part of the weekend staff at Viang Ping Orphanage House. At the orphanages, she gave English language tutoring and helped to raise funding from international organizations. She was invited to be co-author with the Director of this Orphanage House in 2 books: “Adoption a Child in Thailand” and “Adoption a Child or a Child on Sale”.

In 2013, she left her teaching career and to begin working online at home as a translator under the license of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand. It was a good job but she found that she missed working with people. She decided to join the Southeast Asian Study Center as the Program Coordinator. This position gives her the opportunity to share her ideas and her knowledge with people and also for her to learn more about people from different parts of the world that can bring sympathy, understanding and love to each other.

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suchart-189X300Dr. Suchart Setthamalinee

Head of Department of Peace Studies
+66 53-241-255 ext 7884

Dr. Suchart Setthamalinee received his master and doctoral degree in sociology at University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, U.S.A. He also achieved the graduate certificate on international cultural studies from the East West Center and University of Hawai‘i.

He was the author of the book “Violence, Peace and the Diversity of Islamic World” (in Thai); the editor of the book “Muslim Youths in the Modern World,” and his forthcoming book is “Sociological Imagination of Islam: Peace, Family and Women.” He wrote numerous articles both in Thai and international journals on Islam and social sciences.

He is now working on a research project entitled “Peacebuilding in Ethnoreligious Pluralistic Society: A Case Study of Muslims in Northern Thailand.”

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Dr. Mark Tamthai

Dr. Tamthai is the former head of the Philosophy Department, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand, and the former director of the Institute of Religion, Culture and Peace, Payap University, Thailand. He has taught and written in the fields of Philosophy of Science, Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy, and Peace-Conflict Studies. Some of his papers are “Democracy with a Heart”, “The Democratic-Peace Hypothesis and building a Culture of Peace in Southeast Asia”, “Citizenship and the struggle for rights in fledgling democracies”, and most recent, “The Philosophical and Cultural Dimension of Peacebuilding. He is a past president of the Philosophy and Religion Society of Thailand, was a member of Thailand’s National Reconciliation Commission, and headed the government’s peace talks team with the Pattani Movement in Southern Thailand. Currently he serves as a faculty member in the Department of Peacebuilding, Payap University, Thailand.

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TonyWatersDr. Tony Waters

Director, IRCP and Faculty, Department of Peace Studies
+66 9 4796 6973

Tony Waters has a PhD (1995) and MA in Sociology from University of California, Davis.  His international career began in Phrae, Thailand, where he was an American Peace Corps Volunteer in the Malaria Zone Office in 1980-1982.  After that he worked for NGOs serving refugees in Thailand and Tanzania, before returning to graduate school in 1989.  He taught sociology at California State University, Chico, beginning in 1996, and in Germany as a Visiting Professor of Culture Studies.  He was also a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania in 2003-2004.  He has published books including Bureaucratizing the Good Samaritan (2001), When Killing is a Crime (2007), Max Weber’s Rationalism (2015) and others.  He has research interests in refugees, culture, language, the nature of violence, and other subjects. More information about publications can be found at


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John-bio-189X300Rev. John Butt

Professor Emeritus, Senior Advisor, Founder of IRCP
+66 53-241-255 ext 7880

After receiving a B.A. degree with distinction from Rhodes College in 1960, John Butt earned a S.T.B. (M.Div.) degree from Harvard University in 1963, and was ordained as a Minister by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and appointed as a Short-term Fraternal Worker (Missionary) assigned to Thailand. Taught at the Prince Royal’s College and the Thailand Theological Seminary in Chiang Mai, Thailand for three years.

Returned to the U.S. and completed work for a S.T.M. degree from Harvard University in 1966. Accepted into the Th.D. program for the comparative study of the history of religion at Harvard University’s Center for the Study of World Religions. Spent a year back in Thailand doing research, and then completed successfully all courses and examinations in preparation for writing a doctoral thesis. Appointed as a Teaching Fellow at Harvard University for courses taught by Professors Wilfred Cantwell Smith and John Carman.

In 1973 accepted a teaching position in the Religious Studies Department at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. Taught courses that focused on the study of religion with emphasis on the Buddhist and Christian traditions.

During the ten years at Macalester, spent one year in Japan serving as the Resident Director of the Japanese Study Program sponsored by the Great Lakes College Association and the Associated Colleges of the Midwest. The following year appointed chairman of the committee responsible for this program.

In 1984 appointed by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to serve as a Co-worker in Mission and sent to work with the united Church of Christ in Thailand (CCT). Taught in Chiang Mai at Payap University’s McGilvary College of Divinity and served as an advisor and part-time pastor for several churches in the First District of the CCT. Also served as assistant to the moderator of the First District.

In 1990s played an important role in establishing the Institute for the Study of Religion and Culture at Payap University. Served as the Institute’s first Director for almost ten years. Also played a key role in establishing and teaching in the international M.Div. program at Payap University’s McGilvary College of Divinity.

As Director and later as Senior Advisor for the Institute of Religion, Culture, and Peace worked to promote greater understanding and appreciation among different religious communities, especially Buddhists, Christians, and Muslims.

Wrote numerous articles and several chapters for books dealing with Buddhist and Christian forms of religion. Currently writing a book on a Christian response to Buddhist teachings as interpreted and expressed by one of the most important Thai Buddhist monks of the 20th century, Buddhadasa Bhikkhu.

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martha-bio-189X300Martha Butt

Senior Advisor, Founder of Southeast Asian Studies Center
+66 53-241-255 ext 7880

Upon graduating from Grinnell College (Iowa) in 1964, Martha Butt received a Grinnell Fifth Year Travel Service Scholarship to teach English at the Prince Royal’s College in Chiang Mai. There she met and married her husband, John Butt. Between 1966 and 1987, Martha earned a Master’s degree in counseling at St. Thomas University, and worked in Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Japan in the fields of education, counseling and philanthropy. Her last position in the USA was as a grant administrator and Vice President at the Northwest Area Foundation in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Upon returning to live in Thailand in 1986, she began working at Payap University as an Assistant to the President and later Vice President for International Affairs and Institutional Advancement. Martha planned and directed Payap’s initial efforts to create programs and partnerships that brought international students and faculty to Payap and sent Payap students abroad. In 1987, the Thai/Southeast Asian Studies Program was launched. In addition, she managed the international fundraising efforts of the University. Martha officially retired from full time employment in 2008, but has continued to serve as an advisor to the President for international affairs.

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