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Learning Centers

The Philippines Learning Center for Environment and Social Sustainability

With the support of DFAT, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), and the World Bank, the Philippine Learning Center for Environmental and Social Sustainability (PHILCESS) was launched in 2014. Since then, PHILCESS has trained over 1,600 participants. It also serves as a platform for training and other capacity development activities for other institutions. For example, the World Health Organization hired PHILCESS to provide technical support on sanitation projects. In 2018, the University of Philippines’ Board of Regents approved PHILCESS to become a constituent center of the university, thus ensuring the Center’s long-term support and sustainability. More information on PHILCESS is available at philcess.org.

The Vietnam Learning Center for Environmental and Social Sustainability

The World Bank, ADB, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) partnered to establish the Vietnam Learning Center in 2015 in conjunction with the Asian Institute of Technology in Vietnam. The center trains managers, government officials and staff of Project Management Units, university faculty, researchers, consultants, and representatives from non-governmental organizations. As of 2019, around 1,000 participants have been trained. The Learning Center (LC) is partnering with the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources and the Institute of Natural Resources and Environment Training of Vietnam to enhance its sustainability, as well as to reach a wider audience.

Indonesia Network of Learning Centers for Environmental and Social Sustainability

The Indonesia Network of Learning Centers for Environmental and Social Sustainability (NLCs-ESS) was established in 2017 with the support of the World Bank, ADB, and the WBASP. NLCs-ESS builds upon existing Indonesian institutions accredited to deliver Environmental Impact Assessment training. The NLCs-ESS provide technical training, while sharing information and knowledge tools. Gadjah Mada University currently coordinates the NLCs, with four centers for Environmental Studies, two Training Centers and the National Land College as part of the network. The National Development Planning Agency (BAPPENAS) chairs the National Coordinating Team, while support, advice, and guidance to the NLCs-ESS comes from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry and the Ministry of Agrarian and Spatial Plan/Land Agency. NLCs-ESS intends to strengthen and support each LC while building on their unique and complementary characteristics.

Myanmar Learning Center for Environmental and Social Risk Management

The Myanmar Learning Center for Environmental and Social Risk Management is being developed by the World Bank in collaboration with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation, IFC, ADB, and JICA. As of 2019, about 200 people have received training.

The Pacific Island Countries Learning Center

The Pacific Island Countries Learning Center was established in 2016 as a collaboration between the University of the South Pacific (USP), the Secretariat for the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), the Pacific Community, and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. Establishment of the Center has included training and knowledge sharing opportunities with practitioners from throughout the Pacific region, including government staff from environment and land, infrastructure, and finance ministries, as well as other related departments. National and regional consultants, young professionals and students have also participated. A partnership agreement for the Pacific Islands Learning Center was signed in 2019 between the World Bank, ADB, the SPREP, and USP. The partnership includes close cooperation with the SPREP Pacific Network for Environmental Assessment (PNEA) to provide training and promote access to information on managing social and environmental risks in the Pacific. 

This network of the Learning Centers established by the WBASP also provide a leverage point for the roll-out of the World Bank’s new Environmental and Social Framework (ESF). The different capacity development models and delivery mechanisms established or being developed through the networks of Learning Centers can facilitate the delivery of ESF capacity development to government counterparts, consultants and other stakeholders. Trainings on the ESF are being provided through the Learning Centers in the Philippines and Vietnam. A similar approach is foreseen for Indonesia, Myanmar and the Pacific Islands Countries.



Program Manager
Pilar Clemente, Senior Environmental Specialist Washington, DC