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Climate change and migration decisions: A choice experiment from the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Author

Listed:
  • Tra Thi Trinh

    (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, Tokyo, Japan)

  • Alistair Munro

    (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, Tokyo, Japan)

Abstract

Forecasting the impact of climate change on migration is difficult, given widespread reliance on historical data and limited exposure to actual climate change amongst target populations. This study takes a different approach, developing a new methodology that employs a choice experiment to examine intentions to migrate among farmers living in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta, one of the areas in the world most significantly affected by climate change. The respondents are asked to make migration choices for scenarios constructed using six attributes: drought intensity, flood frequency, income change from migration, migration networks, neighbors’ choices, and crop choice restriction. The results suggest that increasing the intensity/frequency of drought/flood increases the likelihood of migration; the effects are stronger for individuals with prior experience of climate change. Furthermore, the contribution of network attribute is gendered and dependent on migration experience. Finally, crop choice restriction, such as those widely employed by the Vietnamese government to control rice planting, may trigger a higher probability of migration. These findings provide insights into the debate on climate change-migration nexus in rural and lowland areas that are seriously affected by climate change. Furthermore, extensive choice experiment data on migration preferences under a diverse range of climate variabilities facilitates projections of environmentally induced migration.

Suggested Citation

  • Tra Thi Trinh & Alistair Munro, 2022. "Climate change and migration decisions: A choice experiment from the Mekong Delta, Vietnam," GRIPS Discussion Papers 22-07, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:ngi:dpaper:22-07
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Keywords

    Climate change; migration; choice experiment; drought and saline intrusion; flood; Vietnam; Mekong Rivers;
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