November 16, 2018

Social Justice

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RLS SEA and Action Aid Vietnam (AAV) are initiating a partnership on promoting global social rights for migrant female workers in Vietnam. Within the framework of the partnership, a research on global social rights with focus on migrant female workers’ rights to healthcare, housing, social protection and kindergarten for their children will be conducted and disseminated to related stakeholders. Consequently, a video and handbook will be produced to widely introduce and promote the Social Rights Framework to migrant workers and other audiences with the aim to improve the level of understanding of social rights among the target group.

The joint projects between the Cambodian Center for Independent Media (CCIM) and RLS SEA provide vulnerable women workers with access to media skills and create a safe platform for them to freely express their concerns over issues that directly affect them.

The cooperation of RLS SEA and the Ho Chi Minh City – University of Laws (HCM UL) focuses on improving the participation of disadvantaged groups – represented by social organizations and intellectuals – in the country’s ongoing law making and revising process.  The Law on referendum, and law on association are among cooperation projects of RLS SEA and HCM UL. The projects are targeted for southern-based members of National Assembly and social organizations in southern Vietnam. The projects provide quality outputs and recommendation for parliamentary debates at national level.

With the support of RLS SEA, the Institute for Legislative Studies (ILS) has successfully conducted many workshops/ conferences which created a platform for experts to discuss on various important issues and laws and to identify the challenges of the draft laws by analyzing and comparing their content with relevant legislations as well as referring to the current practices. Sets of recommendations which are based on participants’ lessons learnt in each workshop were sent to the National Assembly for the improvement of the bills before they are passed.

By means of research and workshops, the Institute for Workers and Trade Union’s (IWTU) project analyzes the current situation of social rights of Vietnamese garment worker in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) enterprises and its challenges. The project expects to compile a comprehensive picture of workers’ social rights as existing issues in order to understand, to raise awareness and to attract more attention of policy makers, researchers and activists on the issue.

In cooperation with RLS SEA, the Institute of Philiosophy – Vietnam Academy of Social Science (IoP-VASS) is aiming to formulate recommendations for better implementation of social justice and promotion of democracy for all Vietnamese people in general and specifically for ethnic minorities. Under the coordination framework, it’s planned to organize an international conference in 2018 on the theme of Karl Marx’s thought/idea on the relation between social justice and democracy, which not only helps to gain a better and deeper understanding of the relation between social justice and democracy but also contributes to find solutions for a better implementation of social justice and the promotion of democracy for all  Vietnamese people in general and ethnic minorities in particular.

The community theater project by META HOUSE is the social-cultural empowerment of individuals, groups and communities built upon theatric languages and performing arts as to promote meaningful human relations as well as to rediscover the authenticity of the social context to which it bears a reference. Theater was used for the first time as educational tool in Cambodian classrooms. META HOUSE uses theater for identifying and addressing concerns that hinder girls’ social and academic development. With support, girls can develop action plans to solve their problems, involving the support of peers, educators, parents and community members.

The cooperation between RLS SEA and the National Academy for Politics and Public Administration – Institute of Scientific Socialism (NAPA-IS) focused on capacity building for members of People councils at grassroots level. Geographically, the project site are the Northern mountainous provinces of Vietnam, characterized with high level of structural challenges and ethnic minority groups in their population. The project targets female and ethnic minority members of People councils at provincial, district and communal levels.

The Office of the National Assembly of Laos (ONAL) and RLS SEA jointly promote the capacity of Lao NA’s members, aiming to strengthen their legislative, oversight, and representational capacities. Through thematic workshops and trainings, parliamentarians possess more effective work approaches and they gain improved knowledge of issues in the country, that would need their intellectual contributions and practical efforts.

With awareness campaigns, discussions and community communications, the Research Center for Gender, Family and Community Development (GFCD) focuses on initiatives that help remove gender stereotypes in society and promote space for women in politics. These projects will make positive changes in terms of political perception and leadership for the women officials. The focus reaches beyond women in leadership roles and also targets other groups around the women including their families, families-in-law, youth, neighbors. etc – since all of them have an effect on a woman’s choice of engaging in political activities.

Vietnam Peace and Development Foundation’s (VPDF) and RLS SEA’s cooperation aims to promote people’s participation in the policy- and decision-making process and facilitate this process by providing relevant information from various perspectives. Research and academic knowledge serve as a firm basis for the support and education of disadvantaged groups that are most vulnerable in the country’s social and economic development process

RLS SEA and the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations (VUSTA) are currently working together to develop VUSTA’s Advanced Policy Training Program on integration of social safeguard in the analysis, planning, monitoring and evaluation of socio-economic development plans, contributing to ensure that the local socio-economic development plans are designed, implemented in a manner that guarantees social, ecological benefits for all, taking into consideration the most disadvantaged groups. The direct target groups of the project are potential trainees of the Advanced Policy Training Program, which include: Senior officials in charge of policy consultancy of VUSTA’s provincial unions, researchers working in national member associations and affiliated as well as the representatives from local authorities and members of the People’s Committee. The project then further benefits the grassroots people living in difficult rural and mountainous areas who are directly impacted by social security and safeguard policies.

Socio-Economic and Ecological Transformation

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The cooperation between RLS SEA and the Center for Development of Community Initiative and Environment (C&E) focuses on developing an ecological lifestyle – that balances economic development, consumption mode and environmental protection – among Vietnamese youth and scaling up the education on ecological lifestyle among youth-led organizations/groups and in universities nationwide. Potential young leaders and young university lecturers are the target group of the cooperation projects. They are active change agents, promoting and practicing the ecological lifestyle approach in their respective networks.

The Center for Social Research and Development’s (CSRD) and RLS SEA’s joint projects strive to empower the affected people and promote a participatory approach in hydropower development in Central and Central Highland of Vietnam. The joint project has enabled target communities to improve their capacity, raise awareness and strengthen their voice as well as establish a platform for them to connect with each other in order to promote their rights. By means of intervention and policy advocacy activities, the project aims to influence the implementation of relevant policies and change the mind-set of hydropower dams’ investors and policy makers in order to improve the living standards for resettled people and to fulfill the tasks regarding environmental protection.

Focus on the Global South (FGS) and RLS have cooperated on two publications that take a closer look at the Mekong Region, specifically large-scale investments and Special Economic Zones (SEZ). The report on the research project “Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and Value Extraction from the Mekong: A Case study on the Control and Exploitation of Land and Labor in Cambodia and Myanmar SEZs” culminates a year-long process and effort of the researcher, Focus team and related stakeholders since 2016. It shines a light on the growth and development model represented by the SEZ, which combines benefits and adverse consequences for local communities.

RLS SEA and GreenID focus on  contributions to green policies and to the concept of Renewable Energy (RE) in Vietnam. Via communication tools (quality research, booklet) and annual energy weeks, the cooperation projects send a strong message that RE is feasible in Vietnam and elsewhere, too. The work approach of the projects include policy makers at national and provincial and local level as well as media and local communities like crucial stakeholders to foster green policy implementation in the country.

The Vietnam National University – University of Social Sciences and Humanities (VNU-USSH) Hanoi has started the cooperation process with RLS in the year of 2002. Since then, the two institutions have carried out a series of scientific investigations, training courses on policy making, policy appraisal and evaluation skills to Vietnam Fatherland Front and People’s Councils members in local areas. Furthermore, they conducted case-study investigations on the impacts of policies on the development of local institutions, a social issue and/or the nation as a whole. RLS also supports the Institute for Policy and Management (IPAM) in conducting trainings for potential policy trainers and lecturers, with help from experts from RLS Berlin, in order to provide necessary skills to conduct policy trainings by themselves in the future. These activities had positive effects on the works of policy research and policy-making within the USSH education system.

The focus of the joint cooperation between the Vietnam Institute for International and Public Diplomacy Studies (VPDS) and the People’s Aid Coordinating Committee (PACCOM) and RLS SEA is to organize national exchange forums and provide quality research on issues related to multilateral diplomacy and development issues (SDGs, FTA , social rights etc.) of the country and the world. The cooperation projects target social organizations and VUFO units at provincial levels, who are well versed in their local situation. Another point of emphasis is their capacity to participate in an international dialogue.

International Dialogue

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