International collaboration

Organisation of a study tour for a governmental and administrative delegation from Vietnam

Knowledge transfer on flood risk management and climate adaptation in interregional and international cooperation

Vietnam faces major challenges in the subjects of flood protection and the sponge city concept. This is particularly relevant for the Mekong Delta, which is regularly hit by floods and typhoons. Rising sea levels increase the risk of flooding and threaten to lead to increased soil salinisation – all within Vietnam’s most important agricultural region.

ENCO AG was commissioned to organise and accompany the visit of a delegation of 13 Vietnamese representatives of national, regional and local authorities to Switzerland within the framework of the BMZ*/SECO programme on “Mekong Delta Climate Resilience”. The aim of the capacity exchange was to transfer knowledge on institutional and technical approaches for successful flood protection as well as for adaptation to climate change through the related sponge city principle. In cooperation with our implementation partner GIZ, we were able to provide the delegation with numerous insights into these topics during their tour through Germany and Switzerland.

During the five-day study tour in Switzerland, numerous meetings were held in Basel and in Bern with staff and specialist units as well as with politicians at cantonal and national level. Visits to exemplary projects illustrated the implementation of risk management activities in practice.

The urban planning concept of the sponge city principle aims to avoid canalising surface water and rainwater as much as possible, and tries to drain it locally and use it for tasks that enable adaptation to climate change. Examples are the preservation of groundwater level, heat protection through greening, etc.

The study tour also highlighted the relevance of legal frameworks and planning instruments to support sustainable surface water and stormwater management, as well as the interlinkage of relevant actors and administrative levels. The latter includes networking between municipalities, cantons and the state as well as transboundary cooperation – an essential aspect for the Mekong Delta.

* BMZ = Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany

Our contribution:

  • Programme development
  • Finding speakers through the ENCO network, exchange with partners and experts
  • Preparation of programme documents
  • Accompaniment and on-site support
  • Compilation of the trip documentation


Mai 2023


SECO, State Secretary for Economic Affairs, Switzerland

Project Location

Basel and Bern


Contact Person

Barbara Schwickert
Mitglied der Geschäftsleitung, Projektleiterin, Partnerin seit 2022
T. +41 61 965 99 00

Project team

Barbara Schwickert

Mitglied der Geschäftsleitung, Projektleiterin, Partnerin seit 2022

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