Vietnam Academy Of Social Sciences

The 8th LASS-RAC-VASS Annual International Conference, 2019 on “Sustainable Tourism Development in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam”


On October 27th, 2019, in Luang Prabang (Lao PDR), three academies – leading institutes for social science research and policy consulting of Vietnam – Laos – Cambodia jointly organized the international conference with the theme “Sustainable Tourism Development in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam”.

This annual international conference has been held alternately in three countries from 2012 to the present. In the new global and regional context, some advantages and disadvantages require strategic cooperation between the three countries to make breakthroughs in many aspects. Therefore, the organization of the 2019 conference with the theme “Sustainable Tourism Development in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam” of the three academies at this time is considered to be very important, having topical significance, attracting the participation by many senior leaders of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party and Luang Prabang Province…

Assoc.Prof.Dr. Bui Nhat Quang made a speech at the conference
The conference warmly welcomed the presence of Prof.Dr. Kikeo Khaykhamphithun, Secretary of Laos PDR Central Committee, Head of the Central Commission for Propaganda and Training, President of Laos Social Science Council; Dr. Sonethanou Thammavong, Member of the Central Committee of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party, President of the Lao Academy of Social Sciences (LASS); Academic Sok Touch, President of the Royal Academy of Cambodia (RAC); Assoc.Prof.Dr. Bui Nhat Quang, Alternate member of the Party Central Committee, Vice President in charge of the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences (VASS); Prof.Dr. Dang Nguyen Anh, Vice President of the VASS, Chair of Conference Organizing Committee, together with scientists, delegates, guests from the three academies (LASS-RAC-VASS).

Speaking at the conference, Assoc.Prof.Dr. Bui Nhat Quang sent his sincere thanks to Dr. Sonethanou Thammavong, Member of the Central Committee of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party, President of the LASS and the staff of the LASS for the respectful, hospitality and thoughtful reception in organizing the conference. He welcomed the attendance of honoured guests, delegates and suggested that the outcome of the conference would be a significant contribution of three institutes for the sustainable development of the tourism industry of the three countries, strengthening close and friendly relations based on the mutual understanding and trust between people in these three countries, actively contributing to the sustainable development of the whole region. Vice President shared: “The conference is the result of the implementation of the agreement between the leaders of 3 academies in November 2018 in Ha Long City, Quang Ninh within the framework of the 7th Annual Conference on Social Sciences.” The leaders were aware of the role and importance of the development of sustainable tourism as well as set goals for learning and sharing of lessons learned to direct the cooperation between Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia for sustainable tourism development. With the potential of developing ecotourism combined with green growth, the close connection of the three countries through air, waterway and road transportation systems has assisted in the development of a sustainable tourism model towards the community with the participation of people, contributing to protect the ecological environment and ensuring social security in the context of Industry 4.0 penetration in all fields (including tourism), is extremely meaningful.

Leaders of 3 academies took souvenir photos at the conference
With the spirit and goal, the conference has been an important academic forum not limited to the perspective of tourism development. It consisted of 3 main sessions: Tourism associated with socio-cultural sustainability; Tourism related to sustainable environmental conservation; Tourism related to sustainable economic development. The presentations focused on analyzing and considering the need for a balance between tourism conservation and development, especially in heritage sites; sustainable tourism associated with regional connectivity; Responding to climate change and industrial pollution to create green corridors for tourism development, ensuring the benefit of the local community, clean, green and eco-friendly tourism, model of community-based tourism, regional connectivity and sustainable development. The discussion of scientists from the three countries shared the same view that Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam need to expand tourism connection to develop and preserve traditional culture.

With abundant content and approaches for sustainable development and sustainable tourism, the conference was an opportunity for Vietnamese, Lao and Cambodian researchers to exchange views from many different fields and sharing research results and experiences to develop tourism towards strengthening, preserving the heritage and ecological environment.

At the conference, the scientists affirmed that Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia have rich and unique tourism potential for heritage, culture and humanity. That is a favourable condition to develop green and clean tourism. However, the three countries are also suffering from the adverse effects of climate change and sea-level rise.  The joint contribution of all fields, including institutes for scientific research and policy consulting, is vital to the success of sustainable tourism development, especially for eco-tourism activities on the Mekong River system. Each country needs to share, cooperate and work together towards a sustainable tourism model for all three countries.

Leaders of 3 academies listened to the presentations at the conference
Speaking at the summary, Dr. Sonethanou Thammavong; Assoc.Prof.Dr. Bui Nhat Quang, and Academic Sok Touch highly appreciated the comments and said that the conference contributed to solving common problems of the three countries, strengthening mutual understanding, realizing the commitments of senior leaders, promoting the cooperation of the three countries in the process of development and integration, while making a significant contribution to maintaining peace, stability and prosperity in the region…

The 8th annual scientific conference was a great success, contributing to suggesting new directions in sustainable tourism development, and strengthening scientific cooperation between the 3 academies. As scheduled, the 9th annual international conference will be held in Phnom Penh (Cambodia) by the end of 2020 with the theme “Developing small and medium enterprises in the new context”.

Pham Vinh Ha

News on date: