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KNBC homepage

To walk far, walk together.

About us

Our Organization

The Khmer Nation Building Conference (KNBC) organization was initiated in 2013 by Sovannpiseth Thong and Nymeth Ung as the first cross-country initiative between Khmer organizations from all over Europe. The aim of the project is to help connecting Khmer organizations and individuals through information sharing, joint projects and pieces of work; the status of the three defined key indicators (Human Rights, transition to democracy and socio-economical development) for Cambodia should also be reviewed in order to understand the current status on those and identify improvement actions.
The KNBC committee is acting for the above as an independent and politically neutral organization.

Our Mission

Within a decade a large number of initiatives have been started all over Europe and the US in order to support or help the people in need in Cambodia. Yet there is currently no joint projects or proper communication established between those organizations and individuals - As a result the KNBC conference was set up in order to gather organizations from different places and countries for the purpose of promoting their activities and competences, connect skills and people, minds and goals, share experiences and views and where necessary identify joint projects or possible collaborations.
As understanding the actual social, political, economic and ecological status of the country has sometimes proven to be genuinely difficult, the aim of the conference is also to help to get more clarity on this by establishing a clear view on those (Baseline) collecting and discussing recent updates provided by the partners.
Common projects or actions should arise from the work carried out of the conference (see Projects section below).

The KNBC committee believes that communication and collaboration is the key to success - As our motto says : “If you want to walk fast, walk alone; If you want to walk far, walk together.”

Our Objectives

We use the Theory of Change methodology (also known as logic model) in order to structure the planning, monitoring and evaluation of the results. This methodology relies on a few components : Goal, Objectives, Activities, Outputs, Outcomes and Impact. Each component listed has a counterpart : Outputs are the results of Activities at short-term, Outcomes derive from Objectives (middle-term) and Impact will be produced from Goal (long-term).

In the table below, (P) refers to the plan and (R) to the expected results.

Short term



  • Put together a map of organizations
  • Bring partners to the table to share knowledge, experiences and feedback; and launch joint projects
  • Promote compatible visions and goals
  • Gradually build knowledge and institutionalize



  • Map of organizations
  • Bi-annual Conferences and Open Forum
  • Annual reporting describing the status of the key indicators for Cambodia and the actions taken by orgs to foster the development
  • A large number of accredited partners and an academic program

Middle Term



  • Establish a solid Khmer Network in Europe - both individuals and organizations
  • Encourage and advise our partners to collaborate on common projects
  • Initiate a broad social movement - understand the past to shape the future
  • Found an academic institute of Cambodian studies - including principles and moral code



  • Better communication and information sharing between orgs/individuals
  • Improvement of the global level of expertise/methodology for orgs
  • Organizations are able to take decisions wisely
  • Status of the key indicators in Cambodia is monitored and the effect of orgs/individuals on this is understood and shared publicly, hence raising involvement and taking respective actions individually and collectively
  • The acquirement of international recognition is established. KNBC operates as an independent and neutral organization which is known for his Cambodian studies. Constant increase of partners joining the KNBC events and network

Long term



  • Allow the Khmer diaspora to take all the appropriate measures for being a positive external impact of change on Cambodia and its society.



  • A remarkable number of young and enlightened Cambodians part of the Diaspora, can, marked by this initiative, take decisive actions for the sustainable development of Cambodia with the support of the relevant skills and methodology all over Europe and the US. On the overall the Khmer diaspora is much more aware of what is happening in Cambodia and what has been done to serve, hence raising involvement.

Our Team

Sovannpiseth Thong

Living in Zurich, Switzerland, he is educated in Finance and Banking. Before he has settled down in nonprofit sector Sovannpiseth gained professional experiences in hotel business school and construction industry. Since 2011 he has worked for different large Swiss NGOs and INGO and has finally committed to international development cooperation. His extra-professional background is co-founding NewSKG in 2010 (formerly presiding) and KNBC in 2013 (Chairman), also an affiliate member of the board of Khmer Culture Center Switzerland. The last 6 years he has invest a lot in networking and implementing projects/programs. Further Sovannpiseth has finished a post-graduate study and various advanced courses at CEPS University of Basel, ETH Zurich and Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights.

Nymeth Ung

Based in Paris, France, Nymeth has a Master in Information Systems and has been working for the past few years as a Project Manager in the Information Services industry. He has excellent analytical and technical skills and profound knowledge of methodology. His main insterests are travelling for work or leisure, working out and keeping fit (bouldering, starting boxing soon!), playing music - with his band and in other musical projects; he likes to learn new things and experiment and is appreciated for his determination, management skills and knowledge.

Michael Reiche

Having spent the first 20 years of his life in East Germany, in 2008 Michael joined a development aid project focusing on food security, improvement of livelihood and sustainable management of natural resources in the Central Cardamom Mountains, Cambodia. During that time, he became concerned with the everyday practices of politics as well with the mechanisms of urban development in Phnom Penh. Between 2010 and 2016 he delved into these aspects while studying at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar and Tongji University Shanghai; at the former, he completed a master's degree in urban studies. Michael is currently living in Berlin and recently joined the preparatory service in the field of urban development (“Technisches Referendariat”). Still being passionate about Cambodian culture, he is well-connected to Khmer communities in different parts of Germany, actively supporting their various activities.

Our Partners

Our selected and invited partners during the conferences, events or for the joint projects of KNBC can be either organizations of all scopes and sizes (currently from Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland and the United States of America) or individuals (e.g. guest lecturers, filmmakers, representatives from associations and political parties, etc.). Each member makes a valuable contribution to the KNBC network by sharing knowledge, skills and methodology with others and by designing and implementing new projects in close collaboration. The complete list with all the partner names stays for the sake of personal privacy confidential.

What we do

Open KNBC Projects

The list of the currently KNBC-supported projects is as below:


The purpose of this project is to define a baseline (what) on various indicators (economics/human rights/democratization ...) for Cambodia, then to assess the reasons for this (why) and finally propose actions for improvement (how and when). This involves constant research work and discussions with orgs and individuals in order to provide an objective, non-biased view of the status for those key indicators.

Map Of Organizations

The goal of this set of activities is to collate basic information on all organizations (and particular individuals) which are taking continous actions for the benefit of Cambodia (with their consent). Those are cultural associations, Cambodian language schools and various leaders, just to mention a few. Having those individuals and organizations on a map and for each, knowing what their activities and goals are will help connecting skills and human ressources for better collaboration.

Annual Conference

A conference is organized and hosted yearly in Paris by the KNBC team and consists of four parts: the conference itself, the periodic review, an open forum and the workshop session.
The usual agenda goes as below (Click on a section name to display the full text):

All participants, mainly leaders and experts, describe their organization (objectives, activities, etc.) or their own activities and introduce themselves (motivation and background). They will also advise on what they expect from this session. Then participants are allocated some time to give more detail on the projects/pieces of work they are currently working on. In the second part of the Roundtable lecturers will expose core topics related to the context of Cambodia or the impact of their work on Cambodia/Cambodian society. Depending on the agenda, best practices can be shared here or during the Open Forum.

The status on the key indicators for Cambodia (Currently: Economic development, Human Rights, Democratization process) is reviewed and checked against previous records since the beginning in 2014 - if applicable, orgs/individuals will give more details on the initiatives they have launched that have an impact on those; future actions are also reviewed; orgs/individuals can then take into account/incorporate those indicators in their strategy.

The agenda is in general undefined and open. During the Open Forum participants can take the opportunity to become more active and creative in plenum or groups; Discussions on starting joint projects, synergies, best practices can be initiated - or any other topics if deemed worth discussing.

A list of topics, which are either known in advance or can arise as a "must discuss" during the session, are chosen with the participants before the workshop. Then those topics are discussed among participants in a brainstorming manner - every participant can provide his/her views on the topic so we can get to a global understanding/agreement on each item. The whole discussion is policed by the KNBC comitee to ensure it is structured and the output is clear.

At the end of the session, participants are provided with a brief recap of the achievements of the last couple days. Next actions are listed, assigned and agreed.
Participants are also asked to provide their feedback on the session and the initiative itself. The annual report will be prepared and distributed at a later time as an output of the session.

Latest news

The KNBC Website is launched

The KNBC Website is now officially live - You'll find here all information and news about the KNBC initiative, along with the details for the upcoming and past conferences. Stay tuned for more updates !

Next KNBC Conference being planned

The third KNBC conference is being scheduled - invitations will be issued to the participants in the next couple months including date, location of the venue and agenda. We look forward to see you all soon !

Summary for the first two conferences to be available soon

We are currently reviewing the minutes and output for the first two conferences and hope to be able to share those with you soon on !

KNBC is recruiting !

We are recruiting a new board member who will help with the KNBC projects. The main responsibilities are desk research, event planning and networking with our stakeholders. We expect strong commitment and good analytical skills. If you are interested please contact us using the information below !

Want to support the KNBC initiative ? Make a donation !