Floods, Risk Diversification and Livelihoods in the Central Highlands of Vietnam

Project status


Rural households in developing economies adapt to risk and to the failure of formal institutions by diversifying their activities and engaging in small, informal institutional arrangements sustaining economic exchanges. The diversification of agricultural activities possibly underlies a puzzle highlighted in recent research: the very low and heterogeneous agricultural productivity in rural economies. This research will run field experiments and collect a follow-up wave to a unique household survey in four rural villages of the central highlands of Vietnam. The research will combine the novel data with hydro-physical modelling of flood risk in order to: shed light on the direct relationship between risk and the fragmented allocation of production inputs across various activities (eg, agricultural households holding numerous, geographically dispersed land parcels); explain the relation between such diversification and productivity; and understand the role of informal insurance networks (eg, labour exchange groups) in mitigating the risk.

Research team

Dr Yanos Zylberberg, University of Bristol; Dr Felix Seberh Kamusu Agyemang, University of Bristol; Dr Laurence Hawker, University of Bristol; Dr Pham Khanh Nam, University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Dr Jeffrey Neal, University of Bristol; Dr Thuy Truong, University of Economics, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

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