Five Year Strategic Planning for the Mekong Institute
Capacity Strengthening and Human Resources Development in the Greater Mekong Sub-region
On 2 March 2020, the Mekong Institute (located in Khon Kaen, Thailand) requested me to review their Strategic Plan (2016 - 2020), and on the basis of that review I was tasked to draft the new Strategic Plan for the period 2021 - 2025. To do so, the Mekong Institute facilitated a meeting of various development partners in Bangkok, to discuss the priorities for development in the Greater Mekong Sub-region. It was a great opportunity for the Mekong Institute to connect with their partners and jointly seek ways forward to address the key development issues in the Greater Mekong Region. During that same week, I organized a 2-day workshop with staff from the Mekong Institute. During this workshop, the staff was invited to reflect on the results of the workshop with the development partners, the opportunities and threats in Mekong Institute’s working environment, and the strengths and weaknesses of Mekong Institute’s operations itself.
Over the past 5 years, the Mekong Institute has been working on three regional development themes: 1. Agricultural Trade and Commercialization (ATC), 2. Trade and Investment Facilitation (TIF), and 3. Innovation and Technological Connectivity (ITC). In addition, MI has been working on three cross-cutting themes to each of these regional development themes: a. gender equality, b. environmental sustainability, and c. labor mobility.
The process brought the staff together and built ownership around the various development topics and themes. And of course, as one can expect from a good consultant, I provided important recommendations and ideas for strengthening the effectivity, efficiency, relevance, impact and sustainability of the Mekong Institute.