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Vietnam Has the Most PhDs, Fewest Research Works in Southeast Asia: Report

Vietnam’s academia is filled to the brim with PhDs, but the country’s scientific journals and inventions are not catching up with the rising population of PhD holders.

According to VietnamNet, there are currently some 24,000 PhDs in Vietnam. A recent report shows that 50% of Vietnam’s PhD holders are working in state agencies as civil servants.

Vo Kim Son, an expert from the National Academy of Public Administration, said that this job distribution is the reason why Vietnam produces the fewest research works in the region despite having the most people with doctorate.

Son also added that the country is among the few in the world with that many PhDs working for the government. However, local authorities are pushing for 100% civil servants to have doctorates in the future.

 “This is quite odd. The people with deep professional knowledge are usually weak at management,” he shared with the online news source. “They are trained to become scientists and lecturers, not to become management officers.”

According to Son, being a manager requires more than just deep knowledge, but also a lot of work experience and good managing style.

President of the HCMC University of Social Sciences Vo Van Sen also echoed Son’s sentiment regarding the number of PhDs in Vietnam.

“Many people study for doctorate just to get a promotion, because Vietnam attaches much importance to degrees,” he said at a meeting with municipal officials in 2016.

[Photo via Duy Tan]

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