Human resource development final design document table of contents

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Executive Summary


1.1 Country and Sector Issues

1.2 Strategic Setting and Rationale

1.3 Current HRD Program

1.4 Lessons Learned

2.1 Logic and Expected Outcomes

2.2 Delivery Approach

2.3 Delivery Modalities

2.4 Budget and Resources

2.5 Contracting Strategy


3.1 Management and Governance Arrangements

3.2 Activity Implementation

3.3 Monitoring and Evaluation

3.4 Reporting and Data Dissemination

3.5 Sustainability

3.6 Inclusiveness

3.7 Environmental Management

3.8 Risk Assessment


Annex 1: Australia-Vietnam Human Resource Development Strategy 2014-2020

Annex 2: Australia Awards Scholarships Schedule

Annex 3: Sub Program Selection Criteria

Annex 4: Short-term Training

Annex 5: Contractor In-Country Responsibility Principles for AVID and NCP

Annex 6: Australia Awards Fellowships

Annex 7: Benefits and challenges of split-degree programs

Annex 8: Feasibility Study of Vietnam TVET

Annex 9: Strategies for Promoting Leadership Pathways for Female

Australia Awards Alumni in Vietnam

Annex 10: Program-level M&E Framework

Annex 11: Monitoring and Evaluation methods and tools

Annex 12: Planning and Reporting schedule

Annex 13: Roles of major stakeholders in program monitoring and evaluation

Annex 14: DRAFT Risk Register

Annex 15: Contractor Key Staff Requirements

Annex 16: Glossary of terms




The Vietnam-Australia Partnership on Human Resource Development (the “Program”) includes delivery of the well-established Australia Awards Scholarships (AAS) program and support for alumni; supplemented by Short Term Training and a number of sub programs (to be identified); a Women in Leadership program; and ad hoc interventions (to be identified) to support ongoing sector programs.

Vietnam has a population of around 90 million. In barely more than two decades, political and economic reforms have transformed Vietnam from one of the poorest countries in the world to a lower middle-income country.

Vietnam has ambitious plans to become an industrialised country by 2020. With more than 50 per cent of the population under the age of 30, a skilled workforce is crucial to support Vietnam’s economic modernisation.

Promoting human resources and skills development (particularly skills for modern industry and innovation), is one of three breakthrough areas highlighted in Vietnam’s Socio-Economic Development Strategy (SEDS) 2011-2020. The Vietnam Manpower Development Master Plan 2011-20 indicates a need to more than double the trained/skilled workforce by 2020.

The scale of education and training required to meet growth targets is substantial and will require investment and reform at all levels from basic to higher education. Quite simply, the current education system is unable to meet demand in terms of quantity or quality.

Since the mid-1970’s, approximately 4000 Australia Awards Scholarships alumni have returned to Vietnam after successfully completing their tertiary studies in Australia. Perhaps another 40,000 alumni have been privately funded.

The opportunity to study in Australia provides Vietnamese scholars exposure to world-class education, research and training institutions; as well as increased experience and understanding of Australia. For many Vietnamese alumni, the experience has been life changing in both technical and personal development. Equally, the large body of alumni also provide opportunities for strengthening Australia’s economic, political and social engagement with Vietnam.

In developing this design, the team reviewed evidence from recent Vietnam program reviews, “lessons learned” documents, discussions with stakeholders including alumni, Government of Vietnam ministries and DFAT; as well as the experience of a number of similar programs in the region.

The Vietnam HRD program to date has delivered a fairly standard scholarships program with a focus on long-term awards predominantly at Master level, with fairly broad eligibility. Evidence from other programs suggests simply building a critical mass of scholarship recipients within a target organisation is not necessarily a sufficient catalyst for change or effective utilisation of alumni’s knowledge and skills.

Creating the 'right' conditions for alumni to improve their organisations is a challenge. It is proposed to test a number of strategies, involving different HRD modalities, to help improve workplace productivity by providing access to both structured support as well as flexible, responsive assistance to address emerging needs.

The “Above-the-Line” Goal for the Program is that Vietnam accesses and uses high level professional and technical knowledge, skills and competencies.

The Program seeks to achieve three End-of-Program Outcomes (EOPOs):

1. Male and female alumni use new skills and knowledge to make positive contributions to selected priority areas

2. Stronger workplace enabling environments for skills utilisation in selected priority areas

3. Australia and Vietnam have stronger, sustainable links in selected sectors/agencies

The delivery approach assumes a more strategic role for DFAT Hanoi in policy analysis and dialogue working cooperatively with the Contractor to identify priority areas for sector and institution engagement to advance Australian aid objectives.

Firstly, Australia Awards Scholarships are at the core of the Australia Awards HRD Program, aligned closely with sector and geographical priorities in the new Aid Investment Plan (AIP), 2015-20. The Program design proposes a more tightly focused approach and aims to enhance the targeting and competitiveness of Australia Awards Scholarships.

It is proposed there be two categories of Australia Awards Scholarships: one an open untied category (70% of awards), eligible on a competitive basis to applicants from central/provincial government agencies, universities, the private sector, NGOs and INGOs within specified (AIP) priority sectors; and the other tied (initially 30% of awards, to be reviewed annually) to specific target institutions.

Australia Awards Alumni would be supported to strengthen their contribution to the workplace through pre-and post-reintegration support including, ‘soft’ skills training, small grants, seminars and workshops.

Secondly, it is proposed to develop and pilot one or two sub programs encompassing more intensive integrated HRD support directed at selected target institutions. The sub programs would offer a balance between long-term scholarships (core assistance) and other HRD modalities. That is, target institutions would receive priority support, not only through access to tied Australia Awards Scholarships, but also through access to a package of flexible integrated HRD assistance.

The provision of integrated HRD activities would seek to go beyond the delivery of tertiary qualifications to enhance workplace productivity, build relationships, promote promotion pathways for men and women, and strengthen program outcomes (specifically, EOPOs 2 and 3) in priority sectors through a broader range of flexible capacity building interventions and delivery modalities, including formal and ad hoc short-term training for both technical and ‘soft’ skills (in Australia and/or Vietnam); technical assistance to access Australian ideas and expertise; and informal learning opportunities including workshops, seminars and visiting lecturers. Target institutions would need to be identified and sub programs designed by the Contractor in close consultation with DFAT Hanoi and endorsed by the Program Coordinating Committee (PCC).

Thirdly, while priority would be accorded to the selected target institutions, flexible HRD modalities would also be available in a timely and responsive way to support ad hoc, or one-off, demand driven thematic requests relevant to any of the pillars and sectors under the new AIP. Opportunities to enhance and support ongoing programs would typically be identified by DFAT sector teams (and the Contractor) through their engagement with counterpart agencies. The Contractor would be responsible for activity implementation, including sub-contracting where appropriate.

Fourthly, to the extent possible, the Program would seek to leverage other DFAT global programs (AAF, AVID, NCP) and whole of government partners in promoting program outcomes. This would simply involve being aware of and maximising opportunities to build upon existing or planned initiatives to further facilitate linkages/partnerships between Vietnamese and Australian organisations.

Fifthly, Australian aid policy objectives on gender equality and women’s empowerment and on social inclusion are addressed throughout the design, including through specific strategies to address disadvantage, provision of leadership training programs delivered in both Australia and Vietnam, gender responsive approaches to M&E, reintegration activities and Contractor personnel.

Identification of target institutions and sub programs will require further preparatory work by DFAT Hanoi and the Contractor to determine demand, commitment and the scope of interventions. The Contractor will be responsible for preparing a plan within 6 months of mobilisation outlining the proposed approach to identification, preparation and implementation of sub programs, Short Term Training; the Women in Leadership program; and ad hoc activities.

The plan will include stop/go points whereby the Contractor undertakes an initial assessment of potential sub programs for consideration by DFAT Hanoi; and it will be guided by sector and geographic priorities as determined through the AIP preparation process; discussions between DFAT Hanoi and the GOV; and available budget.

It is proposed sub programs be identified from within one or both of the following options:

  1. universities (faculties) in priority areas of geographical and sector focus – a number of universities across the country have strong historical links to Australia Awards. Targeting more established, financially stable universities may provide more immediate benefits. However, as the Program is Official Development Assistance (ODA), it will target universities that also include a focus on disadvantage – with a substantial number of students from rural and ethnic minorities. In this way there may be scope to link and support the AIP pillar expected to focus on agriculture, community and social inclusion.

  2. Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) - despite efforts by the Government of Vietnam, the TVET system remains complex, with multiple stakeholders, inefficiencies and duplication of effort and resources. HRD support for TVET could involve a range of delivery modalities, including scholarships (Cert IV Diploma in Workplace Training and Assessment), technical advice in areas of Australian expertise, including support for the establishment of Sector Skills Councils or short-term training, particularly for managers and administrators. This could be linked to ‘centres of excellence’ colleges, many of which already have established links with a number of Australian TAFE institutes.

Available funding and decisions regarding the desired balance between short and longer term activities will determine the extent and timing of new activities that can be implemented.

The Contractor will be responsible for the design and sub-contracting of HRD activities, drawing upon the sector knowledge, policy and analytical support of DFAT, Hanoi. The Contractor will manage implementation of the Program via a Facility model. This will involve relatively fixed expenditure for management of the Australia Awards Scholarships component (promotion and selection, English language training, pre-departure, departure, on-award management, reintegration and alumni activities) alongside flexible expenditure in support of identified sub programs, short term training and emerging needs.

The Contractor would submit a proposal to DFAT Hanoi for approval outlining design activities and objectives, implementation schedule, estimated cost and the approach to sub-contracting. A simple tasking note from DFAT Hanoi would authorise the Contractor to proceed.

Provision is made for an expanded role for the Contractor in managing the new phase of the HRD program. In particular, the Contractor will require capacity to manage and sub contract a range of new delivery modalities; the Contractor will require knowledge and access to a network of expertise within Australia relevant to the AIP pillars; and will assume responsibility for a range of volunteer, New Colombo Plan (and potentially) aid small grants in-country activities.

A partnership will be formalised with MOET through establishment of a Program Coordinating Committee (PCC) to provide joint oversight of the program. The PCC will be a forum for discussion of program performance and effectiveness, and for adjustment of strategic and operational priorities for the program.

Partnerships will also be established with selected target institutions in key sector sub programs. The PCC will decide whether to invite these partners as observer members of the PCC, bringing additional perspectives and opportunity for further building relationships.

Risks need to be monitored regularly, balanced against the likely benefits, and risk levels and/or strategies adjusted accordingly. Overall, the risk assessment of the Program is low.

The fundamental risk is that alumni are unable to utilise their skills and knowledge after return. The design places increased emphasis on selecting the ‘right’ awardees from the ‘right’ organisations and providing additional support to improve workplace productivity.

The enhancements in the design offer a range of modalities and sub programs to address ‘utilisation’ risks through a more strategic and focused approach.

However, with innovation comes increased uncertainty. As lessons are learnt iteratively with new modalities, the future Program must ensure a timely and appropriate response to any emerging risks.



Australia Awards Alumni Network


Australia Awards Fellowships


Australia Awards Scholarships


Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research


Asian Development Bank


Aid Investment Plan


Australian Volunteers for International Development


Central Government Agency


Civil society organisation


Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade


End of Program Outcome(s)


General Department of Vocational Training


Government of Australia


Government of Vietnam


Human Resource Development


Information Communications Technologies


International English Language Testing Service


International non-government organisation


Japan International Cooperation Agency


Korean International Cooperation Agency


Millennium Development Goals


Ministry of Education and Training


Ministry of Home Affairs


Ministry of Labour, War Invalids, and Social Affairs


Ministry of Planning and Investment


New Colombo Plan


Non-government organisation


Doctorate of Philosophy


Persons with disabilities


Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology


Registered Training Organisation


State Bank of Vietnam


Scholarships and Alumni Branch


Social-Economic Development Plan


Social-Economic Development Strategy


Short-term training


Technical Vocational Education and Training


United Nations Development Program


Vietnam Development Information Centre


World Bank





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