VLIR-UOS cooperation in Cuba

Cuba is one of the key partner countries of VLIR-UOS. From 2003 to 2016 VLIR-UOS budgeted € 16.519.320 for cooperation programmes with Cuba, including two institutional university cooperation programmes (with Universidad Central "Marta Abreu" de las Villas and with Universidad de Oriente). VLIR-UOS also funds a Network cooperation in Cuba, coordinated by Universidad Central "Marta Abreu" de las Villas.


Cuba is also one of the 31 scholarship countries of VLIR-UOS. Nationals can apply for a scholarship to follow a training or Master programme at a Flemish university or university college.

Facts and figures


Total budget Cuba 2003-2016 (in €)



Individual scholars





A country strategy for Cuba

The Country Strategy for Cuba identifies the following main themes for all future interventions in the cooperation with Cuba:


  • Food security & agricultural production. Sub-themes: Food and livestock production; Veterinary sciences; Plant and animal biotechnology; Rural development and agricultural management.
  • Environment. Sub-themes: Impact of climate change; Soil and water systems; Clean technology and production; Clean and efficient energy; Coastal zone management.
  • Socio-cultural and tourism development. Sub-themes: Sustainable management of cultural heritage; Cultural tourism development and management.
  • Public health. Sub-themes: Preventive medicine; Community health; Epidemiology / ICT and health.
  • ICT and applications. Sub-themes: Artifical intelligence and computer sciences; Bio-informatics; ICT and education.


The country strategy identifies the following main transversal and cross-cutting themes:


  • ICT and applications. Sub-themes: ICT systems and administration; Statistics and bio-statistics; Learning platforms development.
  • Language and communications. Sub-themes: English language learning and communication; Writing & presentation for academic purposes.
  • Information management. Sub-themes: Library & information services management; Access to research information and resources.


More information in the VLIR-UOS Country Strategy for Cuba.

The country strategy process

Between June 2011 and January 2012 several steps were taken to come up with a country strategy for Cuba. Starting from a desk study with a contextual analysis, stakeholders were consulted in Belgium and in the Cuba.


The mission report Cuba presents a match between the recommendations from Flemish stakeholders through consultations and interviews and the Cuban priorities for cooperation as gathered during the mission and the seminar in Cuba.


Based on this mission report and its strategic considerations, VLIR-UOS worked out a strategy paper for Cuba that draws the outlines for all future interventions in the cooperation with Cuba. This document was discussed at level of the FLemish university associations and was confirmed as the reference framework for programming and more in particular as reference for calls and selections.

Background documents

The VLIR-UOS compiled documents are work in progress, and your feedback in terms of their completion and/or improvement is much appreciated.


  • The Cuba Fact Sheet is a draft summary on the general status of the country with specific attention for the development aid actors as well as the sector of higher education.
  • The Cuba Linkages List provides an overview of past and present linkages between relevant Belgian (academic) institutions and Cuba, including those that are not VLIR-UOS funded.
  • The Cuba thematic and strategic framework presents the various donor interventions along thematic lines with reference to partners and national development priorities.
  • The statistical box provides a quick profile of Cuba.
  • Joint Context Analysis (JCA) of Cuba. This document aims at an analysis of the context in Cuba and of the opportunities to collaborate for the non-governmental actors of the Belgian Development Cooperation from 2017 until 2026. It should primarily be seen as an opportunity to identify possible ways of cooperation, complementarity and syngergy.
  • Joint Strategic Framework (JSF) of Cuba. This document presents different joint strategic goals which the non-governmental actors have put forward, based on the JCA Cuba. Each goal is specified into different approaches, which reflects the contributions of different actors to the joint strategic goal. An elaboration on the development relevance of every goal is also included. The last chapter elaborates commitments for synergy and complementarity between Belgian actors, related to the presented goals and approaches. Special attention is given to the transversal themes gender and environment.


Several governments and international organizations have relationships with Cuba. We made an overview of the relationships between Cuba and international and European institutions. We listed their websites and documents on the cooperation with Cuba. In the following we give you some of the most relevant documents:



Peter De Lannoy

Coordinator South

[t] + 32 2 550 19 64


          Peter DL

Ongoing projects

Overview of ongoing projects



    Flemish open source software finds its way to libraries and museums in Cuba

    Flemish open source software finds its way to libraries and museums in Cuba

    ABCD is a library computerisation system based on free open source software. The DOCBIBLAS project promotes the application of ABCD in various VLIR-UOS partner countries.

    Read more »

    When Google cannot provide the answer

    When Google cannot provide the answer

    Need to know how to deal with limited bandwidth, build robust network infrastructure and motivate trainers?

    Read more »

    Heritage protection in Cuba

    Heritage protection in Cuba

    Multidisciplinary research team brings history back to life. 'Paintings and books are rotting away and many buildings are falling into decay.'

    Read more »


    Final evaluation of the cooperation with Universidad Central Marta Abreu de las Villas (UCLV), Cuba (September 2013)

    Final evaluation of the cooperation with Universidad Central Marta Abreu de las Villas (UCLV), Cuba (September 2013)

    Jaarverslag VLIR-UOS 2013

    Annual report VLIR-UOS 2013

    What you always wanted to know about VLIR-UOS | Why scholar Pauline want to win the Nobel Prize | How pilotless flights above the Andes lead to better agriculture

    Jaarverslag VLIR-UOS 2014

    Annual report VLIR-UOS 2014

    Flemish professor is given the surprise of his life in DR Congo; Tran Thi Dinh's dream of keeping food fresh in Vietnam; and other stories on the impact of almost 20 years of cooperation with Tanzania, Ecuador, Cuba, South Africa, ...