Lao People's Democratic Republic: Strengthening Higher Education Project

Sovereign (Public) Project | 42134-022 Status: Active

ADB is helping the Lao People's Democratic Republic expand and improve its higher education system. The project will focus mainly on upgrading standards at the country’s three public universities: National University of Laos, Champasak University, and Souphanouvong University. It will also improve access to higher education for disadvantaged groups, particularly for women and ethnic minorities.

Project Details

Project Officer
Chanthy, Khamtanh Southeast Asia Department Request for information
  • Lao People's Democratic Republic
  • Grant
  • Education
Project Name Strengthening Higher Education Project
Project Number 42134-022
Country Lao People's Democratic Republic
Project Status Active
Project Type / Modality of Assistance Grant
Source of Funding / Amount
Grant 0166-LAO: Strengthening Higher Education Project
concessional ordinary capital resources lending / Asian Development Fund US$ 24.80 million
Strategic Agendas Inclusive economic growth
Drivers of Change Governance and capacity development
Sector / Subsector

Education - Tertiary

Gender Equity and Mainstreaming Gender equity
Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy
Impact Improved economic competitiveness and increased employment opportunities for higher education graduates
Project Outcome
Description of Outcome An expanded, improved, and equitable higher education system
Progress Toward Outcome

44 university teaching staff undertook master and doctoral degrees in foreign countries and 96 teaching staff undertook master degrees in the country, this support will directly contribute to the higher education quality improvement.

Champasack university campus was developed with laboratories, resource center, e-learning center to expand opportunities for secondary students in Southern provinces access to higher education.

4,979 person times (28% female) received training on strategic planning, leadership and management, curriculum development, research planning, credit system development, and others.

Implementation Progress
Description of Project Outputs

Strengthened management, financing, and governance of higher education system

Enhanced relevance and capacity for quality improvement

Increased equity and access in higher education

Effective project management and implementation

Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)


20 packages were procured and delivered.

54 teaching staff received training on Strategic management, of which 11 (20%) were female.

Establishment of university councils for CU and SU approved on 5 May 2014.

CU council consists of 23 members: 10 female (44%), and 5 from private sector (22%).

SU council consists of 24 members: 6 female (225) and 3 from private sectors (12.5%).

(i) Quality assurance roadmap and framework developed.

(ii) National minimum standard and assessment checklist developed.

(iii) Assessment of teaching quality of 53 private institutes was conducted in Q2 2013; the findings were discussed during the national higher education administrators in October 2013. The findings have been incorporated in the development of core textbooks.

Champasack University Council consists of 23 members, of which 10 (44%) members are women (44%), and 5 (22%) members are representatives from private sector.

Souphanouvong University Council consists of 24 members, of which 6 (22%) are women and 3 (12.5%) members are representative from private sectors.

Development of Higher Education Information System (HEMIS) including registration and financial management system was developed.

Installation of software adaptation completed and being implemented.

MOES and Universities introduced tuition fee in 2011/2012, the tuition fee is between kip 800,000 to 1,200,000 kip.

The ratio of fee paying and non-fee paying students has changed year by year based on the government's policy.

2011/2012: 21% was non-fee paying and 79% fee paying students

2012/2013: 28% was non-fee paying and 72% was fee paying students

2013/2014: 33% was non-fee paying and 67% was fee paying students.

2014/2015: 33% was non-fee paying and 67% was fee paying students.

2015/2016. 30% of non-fee paying students and 71% of fee paying students.

Construction completed.

Construction completed.

Construction completed.

Construction completed.

Construction completed in 2013.

46 teaching staff received matching scholarships in Japan, Republic of Korea, China, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Of which 15 are women (36%).

- 11 scholars undertake Master degree (14 women)

- 9 scholars undertake Doctoral degree (1 women).

Construction completed in 2013

Training courses for new university faculty were designed. 60 master trainers at CU, NUOL, and SU were trained. 135 faculty staff received training on curriculum development, 54 of which (40%) are female

Training courses for new university faculty were designed. 60 master trainers at CU, NUOL, and SU have been trained. A curriculumn review of common subjects taught in early stages of degree programs at NUOL, CU and SU was carried out. 207 from three universisties attend dissemination workship on new curriculum framework, and 53 of which are female

Analysis of existing programs completed for baseline. Development and publication of 12 new textbooks being planned.

Training coursesfor new university faculty were designed. 60 master trainers at CU, NUOL, and SU have been trained. A curriculumn review of common subjects taught in early stages of degree programs at NUOL, CU and SU was carried out.

being implemented.

Scholarship program under way: necessary implementation changes to matching scholarships program communicated to ADB and now 1st MoU approved and signed with Sophia University. Candidates identified for national scholarships and awaiting confirmation from NUOL on course availability.

Baseline data collated: research capacity study prepared; on-line journal systems being established.

Initial HE LAN for DHE, CU, NUOL & SU established through National fiber-optic backbone. Operational in Q2.11. National network and internet access concept paper prepared together with costings (for discussion with review team in November). The system was installed and being implemented.

Universities updated their MOUs tracking system, and identified list of valid MOUs.

Baseline data to be established no mechanisms as yet in place to achieve this target.

The allocation of quota students has fluctuated based on the government's policy. Quota student includes top students, disadvantaged students. The quota students receive stipend and get tuition fee exception.

2011/2012 : the quota stood at 21%

2012/2013: the quota was 28%

2013/2014: the quota increased to 33%

2014/2015 : the quota remains 33%

2015/2016, the quota students was 30% .

Construction of CU Campus was completed in Feb 2014.

Enrollment at CU has decreased compared with the enrollment in 2010 as a result of termination of special courses, intake ceiling instructed by MOES to improve the quality of entry exams.

2011/12 Total enrollment was 3,525, 1,377 students were women

2012/13 - Total enrollment was 3,322, of which 1,311 were women

2013-14- Total enrollment is 3,227 and 1,360 are women.

2014/15, the female enrollment was 15,916 (44%)

2015/2016, female enrollment was 10,203 (30%).

Construction of dormitories completed. Furniture was delivered.

Geographical Location National University of Laos (Vientiane),Souphanouvong University (Luang Prabang),Champasak University (Pakse)
Safeguard Categories
Environment B
Involuntary Resettlement C
Indigenous Peoples B
Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects
Environmental Aspects The Project has been classified as Category B (non-sensitive). An initial environmental examination for the Project was carried out and showed no significant adverse environmental impact.
Involuntary Resettlement No involuntary resettlement involved at NUOL and Souphanouvong University. Development of the CU campus and facilities takes place within CU's existing site of 66 hectares in which there are no households to be relocated and no households using agricultural land.
Indigenous Peoples The Project will most likely have positive impacts on equitable access to tertiary education by ethnic groups, especially ethnic females. This will be achieved by more effectively targeting ethnic students; and increasing opportunities for ethnic groups to work as faculty members and university staff.
Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation
During Project Design

The design of the Project has resulted from extensive discussion with stakeholders through various workshops. Higher Education Master Plan 2010-2020 is participatory developed. Numerous discussions have been held at central and provincial levels with officers, university presidents and administrators, instructors, students and parents, to assist to identify needs and possible solutions. Tracer study of graduates and employer survey were conducted better understand the employers' expectation and labor market demand,

Multiple meetings with development partners have been held to ensure consensus around key issues and future actions.

During Project Implementation The Project will be implemented with close consultations with the central and local stakeholders. Universities are the principal owner and beneficiaries of the Project and will be fully involved in decisions related to the project implementation. The participation of other local stakeholders including the provincial governments, private sector and local industries, communities, and households in the project activities is essential for effective implementation of the Project. Department of Higher Education with the Project team share and consult with the key development partners and 4 public universities relating higher education strategy, policies, and assessment .
Business Opportunities
Consulting Services The Project is supported by consultant services mobilized via three modalities. First, the Project has engaged a firm to provide 185 person-months of consulting services (73 person-months international and 112 person-months national), which has been selected using the full technical proposal and quality- and cost-based selection method, in accordance with ADB's Guidelines on the Use of Consultants (2007, as amended from time to time). The quality- and cost-based selection weighting followed the standard quality-cost ratio of 80:20. This package of consulting services provides technical support for the Project as well as build longer-term local capacities for planning, management, research, and delivery of higher education. Consulting services will span a broad array of expertise, including (i) strategic planning, project management, and monitoring; (ii) governance and management of higher education; (iii) higher education financing; (iv) higher education quality assurance; (v) curriculum and textbook development; (vi) human resources and professional development; (vii) research capacity building; (viii)information and communications technology (ICT)-based teaching and learning; (ix) higher education MIS development; (x) campus and facilities development, and equipment improvement; (xi) gender and social development; (xii) environment; (xiii) procurement; and (xiv) project financial management. In addition to the firm that augments consulting services in specific and needs-tailored areas, international scholars and/or professionals (a total of 70 person-months) will be invited as short-term consultants on an individual basis to assist participating universities in developing academic and research programs and in teaching support. The Project has also locally recruited administrative assistants and accountants on an individual basis as needed to help the PIUs with project administration, accounting, and other tasks including reporting.
Procurement All procurement to be financed under the ADB grant will be carried out in accordance with ADB's Procurement Guidelines (2007, as amended from time to time). The Department of Higher Education project implementation unit (D-PIU) will be responsible for all procurement, except for civil works, equipment, furniture, and vehicles at Champasak University (CU), which will be done by the CU project implementation unit (PIU), in close consultation with the D-PIU. Procurement of goods such as computers and laboratory equipment will use international competitive bidding procedures if more than $1.0 million; national competitive bidding if $1 million or less, but more than $100,000 equivalent; or shopping if less than $100,000 equivalent. Civil works will use international competitive bidding if more than $2.0 million; and national competitive bidding if less than $2 million, but more than $100,000.
Responsible ADB Officer Chanthy, Khamtanh
Responsible ADB Department Southeast Asia Department
Responsible ADB Division Lao Resident Mission
Executing Agencies
Ministry of Education and Sports
Dr. Phonephet Boupha
[email protected]
Avenue Lane Xang, Vientiane, Lao PDR
Concept Clearance 11 Jun 2009
Fact Finding 11 Jun 2009 to 19 Jun 2009
MRM 20 Jul 2009
Approval 05 Oct 2009
Last Review Mission -
PDS Creation Date 24 Jun 2009
Last PDS Update 15 Mar 2017

Grant 0166-LAO

Approval Signing Date Effectivity Date Closing
Original Revised Actual
05 Oct 2009 23 Oct 2009 17 Dec 2009 30 Jun 2016 31 Dec 2016 -
Financing Plan Grant Utilization
Total (Amount in US$ million) Date ADB Others Net Percentage
Project Cost 28.80 Cumulative Contract Awards
ADB 24.80 05 Oct 2009 24.80 0.00 100%
Counterpart 4.00 Cumulative Disbursements
Cofinancing 0.00 05 Oct 2009 24.80 0.00 100%
Status of Covenants
Category Sector Safeguards Social Financial Economic Others
Rating - - - Satisfactory - Satisfactory

Project Data Sheets (PDS) contain summary information on the project or program. Because the PDS is a work in progress, some information may not be included in its initial version but will be added as it becomes available. Information about proposed projects is tentative and indicative.

The Public Communications Policy (PCP) recognizes that transparency and accountability are essential to development effectiveness. It establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced.

The Accountability Mechanism provides a forum where people adversely affected by ADB-assisted projects can voice and seek solutions to their problems and report alleged noncompliance of ADB's operational policies and procedures.

In preparing any country program or strategy, financing any project, or by making any designation of, or reference to, a particular territory or geographic area in this document, the Asian Development Bank does not intend to make any judgments as to the legal or other status of any territory or area.

Title Document Type Document Date
Strengthening Higher Education Project Procurement Plans Sep 2013
Strengthening Higher Education Project Project/Program Administration Manual Dec 2009
Grant Agreement for Strengthening Higher Education Project between Lao People's Democratic Republic and Asian Development Bank dated 23 October 2009 Grant Agreement Oct 2009
Strengthening Higher Education Project Reports and Recommendations of the President Sep 2009
Strengthening Higher Education Project Design and Monitoring Frameworks Jul 2009

Safeguard Documents See also: Safeguards

Safeguard documents provided at the time of project/facility approval may also be found in the list of linked documents provided with the Report and Recommendation of the President.

Title Document Type Document Date
Strengthening Higher Education Project Resettlement Plans Jul 2009

Evaluation Documents See also: Independent Evaluation

None currently available.

Related Publications

None currently available.

The Public Communications Policy (PCP) establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced in its operations to facilitate stakeholder participation in ADB's decision-making. For more information, refer to the Safeguard Policy Statement, Operations Manual F1, and Operations Manual L3.

Requests for information may also be directed to the InfoUnit.


No tenders for this project were found.

Contracts Awarded

No contracts awarded for this project were found

Procurement Plan

Title Document Type Document Date
Strengthening Higher Education Project Procurement Plans Sep 2013