A two-day international workshop entitled "Stakeholder Workshop: Integrating Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction for Sustainable and Equitable Development of Coastal Communities in Indonesia and Vietnam" was successfully organized by the Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment and the Excellent Research Group "Natural Resources Management and Sustainable Environment" at Vietnam National University of Agriculture (VNUA). The workshop, held on June 28th and 29th, 2023, in collaboration with the University of Rhode Island, United States, aimed to promote training, scientific research, and international cooperation in addressing the challenges faced by coastal communities in both countries.

With a hybrid format combining in-person and online participation, the workshop brought together over 30 delegates from renowned international organizations such as the Department of Marine Affairs at the University of Rhode Island (URI), Research Center for Disaster Reduction and Tsunami, Syiah Kuala University (Indonesia), as well as scientists, experts from governmental organizations, and non-governmental organizations such as Hue University, Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology, and Climate Change, Vietnam Institute of Economics and Fisheries Planning, Vietnam Administration of Sea and Island, Center for Climate change study in Central Vietnam, Center for Marine life Conservation and Community Development (MCD), Oxfam, and UNDP, etc. From Vietnam National University of Agriculture, there were Prof. Dr. Pham Bao Duong, Vice President of VNUA; Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tran Trong Phuong, Dean of the Faculty of Resources and Environment (FONRE); Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vo Huu Cong, Vice Dean of the FONRE; Dr. Ngo Thanh Son, Head of Resource Management Department and members of Natural Resource Management and Sustainable Environment group, along with other participating faculty members.

Delegates attending the stakeholder workshop.


The focus of this stakeholder workshop was to integrate climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction for sustainable development. The overall objective of this two-day workshop was to lay the foundation for the successful implementation of the Equity and Sustainability of Coastal Communities in Southeast Asia (EscSea) research and related projects by starting to engage stakeholders, attracting support, and facilitating information exchange.

In the opening speech at the workshop, Prof. Dr. Pham Bao Duong emphasized that coastal communities are often vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, disasters, and underdevelopment. Therefore, it is important to take proactive steps to understand the factors that increase their vulnerability, identify processes that perpetuate inequality, and enhance their capacity in co-producing knowledge based on their local and indigenous intelligence. Prof. Dr. Pham Bao Duong also believed that this workshop plays a pivotal role in bringing together various stakeholders from academia, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, community leaders, and experts in related fields. Through our collective efforts, we could pave the way for sustainable and equitable development among these communities.

Prof. Dr. Pham Bao Duong delivers the opening speech.

In the welcome speech, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tran Trong Phuong, Dean of the FONRE, expressed his confidence that the workshop's theme went align with the core values of FONRE and VNUA. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tran Trong Phuong once again affirmed that the sustainability of the environment and social justice were interconnected, and we had to address both aspects to achieve meaningful and long-term change. The importance of this workshop lied in not only generating evidence to inform strategies and policies but also empowering coastal communities to co-produce knowledge based on their local and indigenous intelligence. By recognizing and valuing their unique perspectives, we could build a comprehensive and inclusive approach with the involvement of multiple stakeholders to promote sustainable development.


Assoc.Prof. Dr.Tran Trong Phuong delivers welcome speech

This workshop was part of the EscSea research program, which focused on global changes and the processes of equality and equitable development in coastal communities. The program was initiated in 2023. Dr. Lisa Hiwasaki (project leader) provided a brief introduction to the project, its objectives, and desired outcomes, emphasizing the importance of research in creating an enabling environment for equitable and sustainable development among coastal communities in these two countries. The results of this research will provide the evidence base for strategies and policies that facilitate the necessary transformations for sustainable and equitable development among communities most affected by climate change, disasters, and underdevelopment.

Dr. Lisa Hiwasaki introduces EscSea project.

During the workshop, Ms. Luong Thi Truong (Vietnam Indigenous Knowledge Network), Dr. Cao Le Quyen (Vietnam Institute of Fisheries Economics and Planning), Dr. Nguyen Dinh Cong (Oxfam), Dr. Tran Thi Phuong (Center for Climate change study in Central Vietnam), Ms. Nguyen Thu Hue (Director of MCD), Dr. Nguyen Thi Bich Yen (Vietnam National University of Agriculture), and other experts shared their experiences in researching and assessing the vulnerability of coastal communities to climate change, their adaptive capacities, and the role of indigenous knowledge in community development, along with other relevant topics.

Participants share their experiences at the workshop.

Under the leadership of Dr. Lisa Hiwasaki, coordination by Dr. Ngo Thanh Son (FONRE, VNUA) and Dr. Huynh Thi Anh Phuong (Hue University), after two days of the workshop, the participating delegates collectively discussed and contributed to the refinement of various aspects, such as interdisciplinary research methods to address social inequality and empower marginalized communities based on the specific conditions and circumstances of each country, sharing understanding and definitions of terms, prioritizing research locations, proposing a list of potential project members based on the results of the stakeholder map, and more.


Group discussions and outcomes taking place at the workshop.

Overall, the workshop was a resounding success, laying the foundation for the successful implementation of the EscSea research and related projects. Throughout the workshop, the focus was on integrating strategies for climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction to achieve sustainable and equitable development.

In his closing remarks, Dr. Ngo Thanh Son expressed gratitude for the active participation of stakeholders and highlighted the achieved results. Dr. Son summarized the activities and achieved results with the active participation of stakeholders. The results achieved initiated a process aimed at addressing social inequality and empowering marginalized communities in Vietnam. The interdisciplinary research methods discussed during the workshop would play a crucial role in aligning project efforts to fit the specific conditions and circumstances of coastal communities. The expertise and profound knowledge shared by the delegates and experts were invaluable in promoting positive change and fostering sustainable and equitable development in Vietnam's coastal communities.

Dr. Ngo Thanh Son delivers closing remarks at the workshop. 


Dr. Ngo Thanh Son - Department of Resource Management,

Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment, Vietnam National University of Agriculture