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Risk management networks of ethnic minorities in Viet Nam

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Author Info

  • Isabel Fischer
  • Tina Beuchelt

    (University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany)

  • Tom Dufhues

    (Senior research fellow at the Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development (IAMO), Halle, Germany)

  • Gertrud Buchenrieder

    (Professor, The Universität der Bundeswehr, Munich, Germany)

Abstract

The utilization of informal social networks is an important risk management strategy of vulnerable households in South-East Asia. To gain insight on this issue, a social network analysis (SNA) was implemented to assess risk management networks of ethnic minority farm households in the northern uplands of Viet Nam. The results from the analysis suggest that kinship relations and the level of wealth play an essential role in enabling basic network services to function. This paper also points out that effective networks require investments to fulfil the requested mutual obligations and that subsequently, social networks among poor farmers are relatively limited. The findings of the analysis show, not surprisingly, that networks cannot completely buffer severe shocks. Consequently, policy measures to reduce the costs of investing in social capital of poor farmers as well as improved access to appropriate social security systems are essential. These findings are applicable to other upland areas of South-East Asia.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) in its journal Asia-Pacific Development Journal.

Volume (Year): 17 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (December)
Pages: 83-118

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Handle: RePEc:unt:jnapdj:v:17:y:2010:i:2:p:93-118

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  1. Mikkel Barslund & Finn Tarp, 2008. "Formal and Informal Rural Credit in Four Provinces of Vietnam," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(4), pages 485-503.
  2. De Weerdt, Joachim, 2002. "Risk-Sharing and Endogenous Network Formation," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  3. Irene van Staveren & Peter Knorringa, 2007. "Unpacking social capital in Economic Development: How social relations matter," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 65(1), pages 107-135.
  4. Goldstein, Markus & de Janvry, Alain & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 2003. "Is a Friend in Need a Friend Indeed? Inclusion and Exclusion in Mutual Insurance Networks in Southern Ghana," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt0d89m20g, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  5. Dufhues, Thomas, 2007. "Accessing rural finance: the rural financial market in Northern Vietnam," Studies on the Agricultural and Food Sector in Central and Eastern Europe, Leib­niz Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe (IAMO), volume 36, number 92327.
  6. Vandeveer, Monte L., 2001. "Demand for area crop insurance among litchi producers in northern Vietnam," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 26(2), pages 173-184, November.
  7. Lan Anh Hoang & Jean-Christophe Castella & Paul Novosad, 2006. "Social networks and information access: Implications for agricultural extension in a rice farming community in northern Vietnam," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer, vol. 23(4), pages 513-527, December.
  8. Thitiwan Sricharoen & Gertrud Buchenrieder & Thomas Dufhues, 2008. "Universal health-care demands in rural Northern Thailand: gender and ethnicity," Asia-Pacific Development Journal, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), vol. 15(1), pages 65-92, June.
  9. Marcel Fafchamps & Susan Lund, . "Risk Sharing Networks in Rural Philippines," Working Papers 97014, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
  10. Van Ha, Nguyen & Kant, Shashi & Maclaren, Virginia, 2006. "Relative shadow prices of social capital for household-level paper recycling units in Vietnam," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 520-533, May.
  11. Alwang, Jeffrey & Siegel, Paul B. & Jorgensen, Steen L., 2001. "Vulnerability : a view from different disciplines," Social Protection Discussion Papers 23304, The World Bank.
  12. Dufhues, Thomas & Buchenrieder, Gertrud & Fischer, Isabel, 2006. "Social capital and rural development: literature review and current state of the art," IAMO Discussion Papers 96, Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe (IAMO).
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