In 2006, IUCN Lao PDR undertook a series of extensive strategic planning exercises, consisting of critical internal reflection and extensive external consultation with partners and stakeholders. The resulting programme of refreshed thinking for 2007 – 2011 is founded on three basic operational principles:

1. Long-term partnerships
2. Knowledge, Empowerment and Governance
3. Responsiveness

Through this process, IUCN Lao PDR has developed a set of clear directions to address key challenges – including undervalued resources, increasing pressures on these resources and insufficient governance structures to effectively meet these rising challenges – and provide necessary support to Lao PDR partners. Guided by a livelihoods approach to conservation, a commitment to the poorest groups in society and the ecosystems upon which they depend, the 2007 – 2011 strategy consists of five core programme themes: 

1. Protected Areas
2. Environmental Governance
3. Water and Wetlands
4. Business and Biodiversity
5. Climate Change

IUCN Lao PDR believes that a key to successfully implementing its livelihoods approach is to pay specific attention to the areas of substantive and strategic overlap between the five themes of Protected Areas, Environmental Governance, Water and Wetlands, Business and Biodiversity and Climate Change. These mutually reinforcing domains, considered within the shared context of Governance, provide a rich opportunity to articulate the policy, technical and procedural paths to desired conservation and development outcomes.