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Mixap, V, 2015 –– Analysis of strategies for emerging leaders in Lao PDR to achieve integrated urban wastewater management

Project overviewVanh Mixap small

Drawing on the principles of integrated urban water management, my thesis demonstrates the need for collaboration and coordination between the water and energy sectors in urban wastewater management in Lao PDR. The realisation of the need for collaboration alone, however, is not sufficient. You also need to have individuals involved who turn ideas into action. My thesis aims to provide emerging leaders in Lao PDR with strategies how they can move from the ‘information and ideas’ stage to the ‘implementation and action’ stage.

My project was about finding strategies for emerging leaders to get water and energy sectors to work together in managing urban wastewater in Vientiane, the capital city of Lao PDR. It provides better understanding of where Lao PDR is in terms of its transitioning to sustainable urban water management (SUWM). Lao PDR does not appear to be ready to explore water and energy in an integrated manner when it comes to urban wastewater management. Skilled leaders are needed to move institutions towards SUWM. The other major contribution of my project is a revised, locally validated set of strategies that emerging leaders could use to advance more integrated and sustainable forms of urban wastewater management.

The highlight of my final project experience was really getting to know my country from a different perspective and understanding how Lao people and foreigners who work there see the country. More importantly, one of the highlights was to learn about the strategies established and emerging leaders in the water and non-water sectors use to create change, and the challenges in actually putting these strategies I have learned into practice. Learning is one thing, putting them into practice may require another thesis!

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