Co-Funded By The EU, [email protected] Project Launched To Provide High Speed Internet For Bhutan’s Research And Education Communities


A high-speed network called DrukREN for research and education communities in Bhutan was also launched.

(Source: DrukREN)


By Sonam Pem BBS

Bhutan will now be connected to the global academic community through the [email protected] Bhutan project that was launched on 20 August 2019.

The European Union co-funded the [email protected] project which will provide a dedicated regional high capacity and high-quality internet network for research and education communities across Asia-Pacific and Europe.

Along with the project, a high-speed network called Druk Research and Education Network (DrukREN) for research and education communities in Bhutan was also launched.


Sonam Wangmo, Senior Research and Communications Officer for the Royal University of Bhutan under the Office of the Vice Chancellor, speaks about the efforts to build a research and education network in the region called DrukREN. The Network Startup Resource Center (NSRC) and Internet2 sponsored Sonam Wangmo to attend the Internet2 Global Summit to both present and explore opportunities to collaborate with international partners.

Source: Youtube/NSRC Network Startup Resource Center


DrukREN will be supported by the [email protected] project, which is designed to support countries to develop and deploy new network services, facilitate human capacity building and knowledge exchange and improve public internet access in the least developed countries among others.

Benefits which the [email protected] project and DrukREN will bring

“This connection shall facilitate the participation of our researchers in world-class collaborative research projects such as radio astronomy, telemedicine, crop research, etc outside Bhutan. It will also help support cost-effective and then saving e-learning initiatives, making education more flexible and accessible. I am pleased to inform everyone that the Ministry of Information and Communications is expanding the DrukREN backbone to cover all the 20 districts of Bhutan in providing high-speed data access to 160 plus research and education institutes including schools in our country,” said Karma Donnen Wangdi, Minister for Information and Communications.

Advantages of DrukREN

And with the launch of DrukREN, it will be able to provide a high-speed network to colleges under the Royal University of Bhutan and hospitals including schools and vocational training institutes.


 Graphic: DrukREN


Currently, DrukREN has its presence in eleven districts and interconnects 25 research institutes.

DrukREN was started as a national project in 2014, funded by Asian Development Bank. It was operational in April last year.

The project was implemented by the Department of Information Technology and Telecom to promote a green and self-reliant economy sustained by an IT-enabled knowledge society guided by the principles of Gross National Happiness.

Meanwhile, as part of the launch, a live streaming of endoscopy was arranged as part of the technical session on telemedicine through DrukREN, with the Kyushu University Hospital of Japan.


This article first appeared in BBS and has been edited for Daily Bhutan.


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