Lao Development Model

Face à l’impunité du régime laotien, ne nous taisons pas !

Libération: 15 Décembre 2016 Anne-Sophie Gindroz, ancienne directrice de Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation au Laos Fondateur d’une ONG de soutien aux paysans, le leader communautaire Sombath Somphone est porté disparu depuis quatre ans. Les autorités du Laos sont pointées du doigt pour leur autoritarisme et leur politique répressive. Il y a quatre ans, le leader communautaire Sombath Somphone

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Development partners: Where are the people?

Above is a word cloud generated from the Vientiane Declaration on Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation  from the 2015 High Level Roundtable Meeting. Where are the people? The term only appears three times in the document itself, and those are within the Lao PDR’s name. Other terms such as rights, empowerment, participation, rural, ethnic minority,

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A clear condemnation is necessary

Sombath continues to be an inspiration to many in Laos and beyond. Those who struggle for justice, for sustainable development, for respect of fundamental rights deserve better than silence. …it is of utmost importance that international community present in Laos clearly condemns his enforced disappearance. It is not enough to ask for an investigation. A

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What is…a Least Developed Country (LDC)?

Background and Criteria The classification of Least Developed Country (LDC) was established by the United Nations in 1971. The main purpose was to enhance support those countries facing severe and persistent challenges to economic growth and development. The criteria for LDC status have evolved over time. They currently are: Gross National Income (GNI): The average

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Please join our writing contest!

The Sombath Initiative is sponsoring a writing contest about issues in Laos. Any age or nationality can enter, but Lao youth are especially encouraged to apply. Essays should be about any one of the following topics (Please select one topic only): Sustainable development in Laos Youth and education in Laos Civil society in Laos Entries should be in either Lao or English, and

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CSOs operate in fear

“The working climate of Lao CSOs, which has been restricted by the government since Sombath’s disappearance, is an outstanding issue, so I wonder if development partners … will be willing to raise it. So far, I see that CSOs operate in fear—being threatened by governmental officials,” the official said. From “Development Partners Must Hold Lao

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Community-oriented learning: A view from Laos

As Somphone’s abduction highlights, attempts to redistribute power away from national governments towards community-identified needs is a highly politicised endeavour that can result in severe, and often violent, suppression. This is particularly so in non-democratic states. Yet it is not an unachievable shift. Indeed, while the post-2015 agenda has displayed a number of weaknesses in

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