Today, for the first time in Vietnam, 21 young leaders from Vietnam and Australia will meet to engage in the 2019 Australia-Vietnam Young Leadership Dialogue (AVYLD). Selected on the basis on their leadership ability and potential to shape national and regional agendas, the young leaders represent diverse industries such as the arts, agriculture, technology, sports, business, education and environment. The dialogue will take place over 5 days from 26 - 30 May 2019 in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. It aims to facilitate deeper cross-cultural understanding and collaboration through discussions and workshops with distinguished speakers and panellists from both Vietnam and Australia. This year, the dialogue centres around the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals under the overarching theme Beyond 2019: Towards Our Sustainable Future. Delegates will have an official meeting with His Excellency, Mr Vu Duc Dam, Deputy Prime Minister, Socialist Republic of Vietnam to hear support from the Government and the importance of their roles in bringing greater prosperity to the bilateral relationship.
The Dialogue will be opened in the presence of His Excellency, Mr Le Quoc Phong, First Secretary of the Communist Youth Union, Social Republic of Vietnam and His Excellency. Mr Craig Chittick, the Australian Ambassador to Vietnam who express great encouragement to the 2019 cohort of delegates.
Continuing on from the strong foundations of the inaugural 2017 AVYLD in Sydney, Australia, the 2019 program will challenge the young leaders to think differently and stretch their existing thoughts and considerations. A strong emphasis will be placed on five of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals – Gender Equality, Reduced Inequalities, Quality Education, Climate Action, Sustainable Cities and Communities. Specifically, in cross-country teams, delegates will put their energies into a 6-month project that addresses one of these SDGs.
Within the overarching theme, delegates will have the opportunity to engage, discuss and be provided with new perspectives on the following themed areas:
Global leadership: leading with courage and good governance in a globalised world
Harnessing opportunities: maximising human potential, distributed and regenerative by design, entrepreneurial approach to reducing inequalities
Sustaining our futures: educating for the future, gender justice, environmental sustainability and living with purpose.
Building momentum: Australia and Vietnam 2030, identity, aspirations and challenges.
The challenges that the SDGs aim to address are acutely alive in both nations. The Dialogue espouses the principle that only through collaboration, countries can address such shared, national, regional and global challenges. The themed areas will be further explored by a number of profound speakers who have been invited to deliver their perspective and engage in discussions with delegates. These include: Madam Ton Nu Thi Ninh, President, Ho Chi Minh City Peace & Development Foundation and Vice President, Vietnam Peace Committee; Mr. Michael Croft, Head of Office and UNESCO Representative to Vietnam; Ms Nguyễn Thị Vân, Co-founder and Chairwoman, Imagtor; Colonel Nerolie McDonald, Australian Defense Attaché in Vietnam and Laos; Ms Khanh Nguy Thi, Executive Director, GreenID; Professor Eddy Malesky, Duke University and lead author of the Vietnam Provincial Competitiveness Index; Dr Dang Hoang Giang, Deputy Director, Center for Community Support and Development Studies (CECODES). A full program overview and key speakers, can be found Here
On the opening day of the Dialogue, His Excellency. Mr.Craig Chittick, the Australian Ambassador to Vietnam, shared “The Australian Government via the Australia ASEAN Council is a proud supporter of the Dialogue. It was inspiring to have been part of the process to select the delegates for the 2019 Dialogue. There is no doubt that the selected delegates will help shape the future of Vietnam and Australia. I look forward to strengthening our bilateral relationship with Vietnam through this significant platform.”
During this transformative week, Ms. Cat Thao Nguyen, Board Chair of AVYLD said: “We have selected delegates who are pioneers, thought leaders and changemakers from incredibly diverse fields including classical music, agribusiness, education, technology and private equity investment. The the high calibre delegates embody a great sense of hope in what is possible but also demonstrate commitment to their visions. Our two great countries’ destinies are intertwined. Now more than ever, both countries need reliable trustworthy partners. We are proud to contribute to the bilateral partnership through nurturing powerful people-to-people links.”
One of the highlighted activities of the AVYLD program is a Young Leaders Forum, held on the 28th May, which will be open to members of the public. 2019 delegates will share their own views and experiences on the significance of the five United Nations Sustainable Development Goals thread throughout Dialogue and also respond to questions asked of the public. This forum has attracted over 600 registrations from young professionals and students who are wanting to attend and share their ideas and enthusiasm in discussions with delegates.
In addition, there will be an exclusive Gala Dinner on the 29th May to wrap-up the significant milestones and take the opportunity to celebrate and express sincere appreciation to the AVYLD community. This includes recognising distinguished Partners, Sponsors, Speakers, Advisors and AVYLD’s Alumni for all of their support in co-creating and delivering this transformative experience for the delegates and contributing to the sustainable development of both countries. Guests will also be provided with a closer look into two remarkable social projects based in Vietnam, represented by AVYLD’s Alumni Phillip Nguyen, Ambassador of Loreto Vietnam and Huong Dang, co-founder of HopeBox, the social enterprise generating awareness of domestic and family violence in Vietnam, founded as a result of engagement at the 2017 Dialogue.
Last year, the inaugural Dialogue was held in Sydney, Australia and overwhelmingly received 1400 expressions of interests, This year, expressions of interest grew by over 40% and 22 delegates were selected for the official 2019 AVYLD in Vietnam, combined with much broader engagement with the community at large.