Global Survey on Sustainable Lifestyle GSSL in Vietnam Forum on Sustainable lifestyles

C&E started voluntary work with UNEP and the Task Force to carry out a survey in Vietnam in December 2008 to explore how young adults from different cultures in world perceive, imagine and shape sustainable lifestyles; and to explore how we can build on their experience, creative ideas, values and aspirations to design and implement policies, sending affective messages on sustainability that are inspiring and respond to respond to their socio-cultural identities.  The survey’s questionnaire has been translated into Vietnamese and posted on the UNEP DTIE’s website (

The C&E and volunteers also promoted the survey through its network and with Universities in different cities of Vietnam, young professionals and green volunteers.  With the financial support from the Swedish –Vietnamese Programme on Environmentally Sustainable Development Programme, the Department of Science,  Education, Natural Resources and Environment of the Ministry of Planning and Investment, C&E co-organised four forum with  Hanoi University of National Economics, Hanoi University of Industrial Art, Hanoi University of Foreign Trade and the Network of volunteers of the, for young people to discuss and share their view on sustainable lifestyles, sustainable consumption and production, in March 2009- on occasion of the  “Youth Month”. Young people took opportunities to exchange views, knowledge and ideas on sustainable development, sustainable lifestyles, sustainable consumption and production, environmental protection and climate change.

GSSL in Vietnam aimed to target 500 respondents, mainly students and young professionals ages from 18 to 35. After three months online survey, the respondents from Vietnam reached 570, with a good mix of disciplines, professional activities and levels, male and female, as well as age composition. The C&E will also conduct the analysis of the questionnaires collected in Vietnamese and produce conclusions in both Vietnamese and  English, for UNEP’s report as well as for Vietnam report. C&E plans to organize a Conference in September 2009 to share the report as well as to provide forum for young people to share ideas on Sustainable Lifestyle.


In order to promote sustainable lifestyle, sustainable development, and environmental challenges, the Student Researchers’ Club of the Hanoi University of Foreign Trade  organised the first forum on sustainable lifestyle.  About 100 students and the four student’s teams from K46 of Hanoi University of Foreign Trade participated in the discussions and competitions. The student teams presented and talked about sustainable lifestyle actively and creatively.  The students also had chance to discuss with professors and experts on hot issues, such as solid waste- disposal, recycle, reuse and reduce waste:  industrial pollution, tropical ecosystem, and climate change, as well as climate change mitigation and adaptation. The student’s teams also proposed different solutions for environmental challenges, raising environmental awareness for the public, changing behaviors and start actions, to protect our common house- the Earth- for our future generations.

Hanoi University of National Economics organized the Forum on “Students and sustainable lifestyle and sustainable consumption” on 26 March 2009 networking students and professors, experts and scientists, and 500 students from Hanoi University of National Economics, University of Natural Sciences, and from the 9 voluntary students groups. The participants shared knowledge, experience, ideas and actions for sustainable lifestyle, sustainable consumption and production, sustainable development. Vice-Rector of the University, Prof. Pham Quang Trung expressed that sustainable development is the common goals of all nations, sectors. In order to move towards sustainable development, sustainable lifestyles and sustainable consumption, production are so important.  The university has integrated sustainable development and environmental protection into its curriculum.  In addition to presentations on sustainable development,  for sustainable lifestyle, sustainable consumption and production, and experience from other countries, experts and professors and the students discussed on Corporate Social Responsibility, climate change, poverty and environment. The student club 3R (Reduce, reuse, and recycle) presented activities carrying out by different student voluntary groups in Hanoi, promoted using eco-bags instead of plastic bags to reduce impacts on the environment. Hanoi University of National Economics also called for a Scientific Research on Environment and Sustainable Development among students, as well as logged on the online survey of GSSL.

Sustainable lifestyle, that what we are aimed for better life conditions, harmonization with the nature and culture… In order to develop sustainable lifestyle, everyone should think and care about organizing everyday activities, production and consumption, as well as the way we communicate with others and with the nature.  Hanoi University of Industrial Art organized its forum on 27 March 2009 with 100 participants. The students discussed and shared their lifestyles, their habits and daily experiences, how students living in the university campus care about energy efficiency, saving and take care of the common goods.  Students also shared experience getting foods, how to select the best quality foods with reasonable prices. Students learned about food safety, sanitary and quality of products.  All students are using bicycles, motorbikes or buses for traveling. Students shared their opinions on transportation system, air pollution and global warming, and how to improve the traffic, which is chaotic in Hanoi. For the students live in the campus, buses are the most appropriate transportation mean, which is cheap (with subsidy from the government), less pollution and reduce the traffic congestions.  Students watched VIDEO and discussed on different lifestyles of the youth with different cultures such as how American, Japanese, German and Vietnamese young people live and care about their life, nature and culture.  Students draw their own conclusion on how to improve their habit, how to live more sustainable. Young people would like to learn from American on creative idea, freedom expression, learn from Japanese friends on responsibility and seriousness; German friends on disciplinary and saving: French friends on politeness…. Participated in the forum, students gained many lessons and it would help changing behaviors toward sustainable lifestyles.

Pan Nature- an NGO with website and networking green volunteers organized a fieldtrip to Hang Kia-Pa Co Nature Reserve in Hoa Binh province, neighbor of Hanoi, on 28-29 March 2009, to share views on the sustainable development.  This was also very good opportunity for the volunteer network to meet and discussed offline. Fifty young volunteers, selected from 100 in the network, from 14 universities and institutions, organizations, including voluntary groups, clubs, and Pan Nature’s trainees, participated in the field trip.  Participants learned about the nature reserve, its biodiversity, value and its plan for conservation, as well as socio-economic conditions of the local people. Pan Nature introduced for the participants and the Nature Reserve about the Community based conservation in the commune in the buffer zone.  Voluntary Groups also shared their experience in working in environmental field with students and young people.  A roundtable discussion draws attention to local community participation in environment and natural resources management.  Participants learned about local culture, identity and local and custom environmental regulations.  A camp with cultural exchange and games finalized the fieldtrip. The group turned off all lights in order to participate in the Earth Hour campaign.  The participants gained experiences from field in Pa Ko commune, Mai Chau district, Hoa Binh province with very exotic culture of the the H’Mong ethnic people. Five groups were formed to collect information on culture, lifestyle, livelihood, production and consumption. Participants also visited Pa Co market to learn sustainable consumption and culture; visited village to observe economic development and household economy; A tea factory to see the production and community development, as well as agriculture in upland farm. The participants discussed and shared information, presented very informative and interesting reports, with questions and answers to deepen knowledge and share unforgettable experiences.  Pan Nature shared with the participants on sustainable development and encouraged the participants involving in different activities of the voluntary groups working for a better life.

Human has ability to process toward sustainable development, which enables us to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations. The young people in Vietnam with their enthusiasm and creative thinking, will take actions and solutions for sustainable development at local level in the country. Starting with sustainable lifestyle, considering step by step, the young people will be successful in building the Earth as a better place for us and for the future generations. 

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