Support to Advancing Human Development Through Policy-Informing Applied Research on Human Development Issues Especially Relevant for Achieving the 8th NSEDP/SDGs

What is the project about?

 Educational session on the concept of Human Development Report in Vientiane Province. Photo: UNDP Lao PDR/Poverty Reduction Unit

Human Development Reports have been used by the UNDP since 1990 to reflect on policies which contribute to the improvement of people’s livelihoods while increasing a country’s economic growth. Therefore, National Human Development Reports aim at fostering a national dialogue to widen development choices and promote sustainable and inclusive growth.

With the support of the Government of Lao PDR, the Reports are used as a tool to inform national policy-making which promotes inclusive, sustainable national growth though the five-year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (NSEDP). In addition to providing policy development guidance, the Report production process has also strengthened national capacity in research and production of high quality analytical work.  

The main objective of this project is to further develop government capacity to undertake applied policy research on strategically selected human development issues, especially relevant to achieving the goals outlined in the National Socio-Economic Development Plan. In particular, Least Developed Country graduation and issues related to adapting the new Sustainable Development Goals to Lao PDR to sustain an adequate transition from the Millennium Development Goals to the new global development agenda.

What have we accomplished so far?

  • Concept note finalised for the 5th National Human Development Report, including the important step of defining the role and objectives of the National Advisory Board. The Report is expected to be published by September 2016.
  • Further enriched public understanding of human development, particularly for policy makers and youth through a human development textbook and the first human development course has been piloted at the National University of Laos.
  • Disseminated information on human development through innovative communications channels, for example through a drawing contest (targeting youth) and media awards on human development-related essays (open to journalists) and Q&As at universities and high schools.
  • In cooperation with the Department of Planning of the Ministry of Planning and Investment, organised a series of workshops and trainings to share knowledge on human development among selected provincial and district planning officials with the objective of embedding the human development concept within planning.
  • Successfully organised two national Least Development Country graduation workshops were successfully organised to enhance policy makers’ understanding of graduation criteria as well as the implications of graduation for Lao PDR. 

Who finances it?



  • Total project budget: USD 1,809,700
  • Donors: UNDP: USD 631,560
  • Unfunded budget (Funding Gap): USD 1,178,140