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Emory University

Publication Date

Spring 2010

Program Name

Viet Nam: National Development and Globalization


Vietnam is currently in the process of creating and implementing an important series of reforms to their higher education system. Their commitment to the process is encouraging, but the level of institutional autonomy at the college and university level is still low. Higher education institutions are unable to fully make academic and financial decisions without government oversight, an issue that appears to be hindering innovation and development within the sector. Based on the high importance of human resource development, and higher education’s distinct role in that process, these reforms are becoming increasingly important and necessary. Reforms are being created but not implemented and thus the entire process is slowed to a dangerously slow level—without resolute action, the large economic growth Vietnam has experienced will become unsustainable. The aim of the research is to come to a better understanding of what kind of system of government management and governance is currently in place in the higher education sector. Additionally it will focus on the reform process, including who is involved and what steps are being taken. Great emphasis is placed on increased institutional autonomy. By interviewing former government officials, university administrators, professors, and educational policy experts involved in the reform process and conducting extensive secondary research, this study hopes to gain perspective into the realities of educational reform in Vietnam, specifically related to the governance structure of higher education.


Education Policy | Higher Education Administration


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