The actual VAST has its origin from a few research units of very small size under the management of the Vietnam State Science and Technics Committee which was established in 1959 and now becomes the Ministry of Science and Technology. The initial basis of these research units were the research teams and laboratories in the mathematical, physical, chemical, biological and geological fields with the total of 200 staff.
Acknowledging the important role of the Science & Technology in the country's development, since the early years of the 70-s during the very difficult war time the Government decided to establish the research facilities in Nghia Do area aiming the biggest scientific research centre of the country for the future development. In 1975 immediately after the country's reunification, the Government issued Decision No. 118/CP dated May 20, 1975 regarding the establishement of the National Centre for Scientific Research of Vietnam (NCSR of Vietnam) which became the National Centre for Natural Science and Technology (NCST). The Government appointed Prof. Tran Dai Nghia the first Director of the NCSR of Vietnam.
Anniversary of 10 year-established NCSR
The NCSR of Vietnam used to be the biggest natural science research institution of Vietnam under the direct management of the Government and the Prime Minister with the function to conduct the research in the fundamental natural science fields, the NCSR of Vietnam conducted also the application research to meet the immediate tasks of the post war time reconstruction of the country.
The 80-s period was marked by the capacity building activities of the NCSR of Vietnam. During this period the training activities were pushed up strongly with the international assistance. Many high level scientific staffs of the NCSR were trained abroad and they make important contributions to the research, production and domestic training activities.
International organizations and scientific institutions offered the research equipment and instruments which were important in the capacity building period of the Institute. The international assistance and the in-country formation created the strong scientific staff background for the NCST with the capacity that met the country's requirements.
The 1993 witnessed an important land mark in the development of the NCSR of Vietnam. The new development stage required to intimately link the sciences to the practice and the Government issued Decision 24/CP dated May 22, 1993 to establish the National Centre for Natural Science and Technology on the base of the NCSR of Vietnam.
The renaming concluded a deep meaning. It marked the new tendency of "Doi moi" in the whole country and therefore the science had to meet more effectively the socio-economical development requirement of the country. In addition to the fundamental research and the natural resources survey functions, the NCST was required to conduct the technological researches, particularly the high tech spheres like information technology, biotechnology, new materials, electronics and automatization. They were classified as the top research priorities of the NCST in the actual period.
In 1998 the Government approved the master plan to develop the NCST up to 2010. This master plan extended the space of the NCST to encompass new research facilities coupled with the green area. This plan included also the establishment of the Vietnam Natural Museum, the Institute of Environmental Technology and the Experiment Complex.
the Government issued Decision No 27/2004/NĐ-CP dated Jan 16, 2004 to assign Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology 's functions, tasks, rights and organization. According to this decision, the NCST now becomes the VAST.
Directorates of Vast up to now:
- From 1975 to 1983: Former President: Prof. Academician. Tran Dai Nghia
- From 1983 to 1994: Former President: Prof. Academician. Nguyen Van Hieu
- From 1994 to 2008: Former President: Prof. Dr. Sc. Dang Vu Minh
- From 2008 to now: President: Prof. Dr. Chau Van Minh
Prof.Academician. Tran Dai Nghia