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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to examine the opportunities, challenges, and implications for human resource development (HRD) for Cambodia in joining the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Economic Community in 2015. The paper starts by providing an overview of ASEAN as a regional institution and the rationale for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2015. The second section outlines and discusses current HRD practices in Cambodia, which include the country’s National Strategic Development Plan and Rectangular Strategy, higher education system, vocational and technical education system, and HRD through the private sector. What follows is an in-depth analysis ofthe main HRD challenges facing Cambodia, namely ASEAN integration challenges, mismatches between education and employment, problems with higher education and technical and vocational education systems, challenges in technology development and HRD, and a lack of awareness and engagement in the AEC processes. The paper concludes by discussing the implications for research and practices as regards Cambodia’s integration in the ASEAN Economic Community.

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