VGBC is a program of Green Cities Fund, Inc., an international non-profit organisation based in California, USA. VGBC was established in 2007 with an aim to raise awareness and build capacity for the development of green building in Vietnam.
Mr. Le Cuong was the Co-Founder and Vice-President of both The Vietnam Green Building Council and The Green Cities Foundation (Oakland, USA). He was awarded honorary member of the French Association of Architects in 2008 with strong training, urban development and heritage preservation background. From 2007 – 2008, he was professor at the University of Hanoi, School of Architecture. He received his Master Degree of Architecture at Cities Design from MIT, Cambridge, USA in 1971 and Federal Polytechnic School of the University of Lausanne, Switzerland in 1967.
” I formed Green Cities Fund as a California “public benefit” corporation in 2005 to continue the humanitarian work Nhu and I had been doing in Cuba, Afghanistan and elsewhere. In Vietnam our friend Le Cuong helped us start the Vietnam Green Building Council as a Green Cities Fund project, but the person who really devoted tremendous time and effort to make it successful and a functioning organization was Jalel, so he deserves much of the credit for its success. I’m thankful to have played a small role as a catalyst to VGBC’s success and survival, and look forward it its increasing assistance to Vietnam becoming a greener economy “
Dr. Jalel Sager
Dr. Jalel Sager teaches ecological economics and microgrids at the Energy and Resources Group (ERG) at UC-Berkeley. He researches Mekong energy planning and development for a joint Berkeley-Harvard University project (LMPPI); his previous work focuses on historical and institutional relationships between energy and political economic systems. In 2012 Dr. Sager co-founded the Southeast Asia—Renewable and Adaptive Energy (SEA-RAE) network at Berkeley for microgrid research and implementation, and in 2014 New Sun Road, an allied California benefit company. In 2007 he organized the Vietnam Green Building Council (VGBC), now the nation’s leading green building organization, serving as its founding executive director until 2009, when FuturArc magazine profiled him as one of Asia’s top 20 positive influences in the building sector. Dr. Sager received his PhD from ERG in 2015, an ERG Masters’ degree in 2011 and an undergraduate degree from New York University’s Gallatin School. He has received the US National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship; a US Foreign Language and Area Studies fellowship; and a National Merit scholarship
- DECEMBER 2005
VGBC, and its parent organization, Green Cities Fund, Inc. (GCF), conceived in Hanoi by architect Le Cuong, lawyer Tom Miller, and journalist and consultant Tran Tuong Nhu.
- APRIL 2007
Jalel Sager joins VGBC project as Hanoi coordinator.
- JULY 2007
VGBC wins grant from RMIT Global Cities Institute to develop urban adaptation website for Viet Nam.
- AUGUST 2007
VGBC holds first annual “Green Summer” lectures and professional/academic seminars in Hanoi.
- SEPTEMBER 2007
VGBC forms technical committee to create green benchmarks for Viet Nam. VGBC submits business plan endorsement of WorldGBC. Jalel Sager named VGBC executive director.
- OCTOBER 2007
GCF applies for formal operating permission in Viet Nam. * VGBC finalizes founding international advisory board.
- NOVEMBER 2007
VGBC collaborates with local architects on competition for green high-rise. Staff and members of founding board and international technical committee travel to Ho Chi Minh City for Nautilus Institute scenario workshop on climate change adaptation in Asia. VGBC begins partnership with Tri Viet University project of board member Madame Ton Nu Thi Ninh.
- DECEMBER 2007
VGBC receives AUD $62,000 grant from the Global Cities Institute of RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia to begin SCCA research and bring VGBC researchers for green building training in April, 2008. Organizational meeting of the VGBC Technical Steering Committee Three working groups formed: SCCA Buildings, SCCA Urban Planning, and SCCA Infrastructure * VGBC receives formal endorsement from WGBC.
- JANUARY 2008
GCF receives operating permission from the Vietnamese government. Executive Director Jalel Sager addresses annual national meeting of Viet Nam Association of Civil Engineering for the Environment (VACEE) on climate change, sustainable building, and SCCA. Working groups hold first meetings and finalize 2008 action plans.
- FEBRUARY 2008
Rolling launch of the Viet Nam Sustainable Climate Change Adaptation Network (V-SCCAN), VGBC’s adaptation website for Viet Nam.