Rural Livelihood Strategies in Cambodia: Evidence from a Household Survey in Stung Treng

47 Pages Posted: 25 Mar 2015

See all articles by Dorothee Bühler

Dorothee Bühler

Leibniz Universität Hannover

Ulrike Grote

University of Bonn - Center for Development Research (ZEF); Leibniz Universität Hannover - Faculty of Economics and Management

Rebecca Hartje

Leibniz Universität Hannover

Bopha Ker

Cambodia Development Resource Institute (CDRI)

Do Truong Lam

Leibniz Universität Hannover

Loc Nguyen

Leibniz Universität Hannover

Trung Thanh Nguyen

Leibniz Universität Hannover

Kimsun Tong

Cambodia Development Resource Institute (CDRI)

Date Written: March 2015

Abstract

The overall objective of this discussion paper is to advance the knowledge on rural livelihoods in Stung Treng, Cambodia. In a cluster analysis, five clusters with very different livelihood strategies are identified based on a sample of 600 rural households. Despite the fact that nearly all households are engaged in some form of subsistence farming, especially by growing rice, the richer clusters build on self-employment and higher-skilled wage employment. In contrast the middle income cluster mainly depends on natural resources (fish and firewood). The poorer two clusters are engaged in lower-skilled wage employment. The incidence of poverty is widespread but differences between the clusters are clearly visible. Even the better-off households have consumption poverty headcount ratios of between 37 to 50% at PPP $1.25. For households from the poorest clusters the poverty headcount ratio amounts to even 70% for income and 80% for consumption. Especially the households largely depending on natural resource extraction are characterized by a high incidence of poverty and high vulnerability. In addition, there are a number of pressures which are expected to increase poverty problems in the future. Policies aimed at reducing poverty and improving rural livelihoods need to carefully consider the close linkages between rural livelihoods and natural resources. But also a diversification away from natural resource extraction into higher-skilled jobs is found to be a strategy opening up new opportunities to improve livelihood security and raise the living standards of the poor.

Keywords: Livelihoods, Rural Poverty, Cluster Analysis, Diversification, Cambodia

JEL Classification: J23, J43, N55, R23, Q12

Suggested Citation

Bühler, Dorothee and Grote, Ulrike and Hartje, Rebecca and Ker, Bopha and Lam, Do Truong and Nguyen, Loc and Nguyen, Trung Thanh and Tong, Kimsun, Rural Livelihood Strategies in Cambodia: Evidence from a Household Survey in Stung Treng (March 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2583770 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2583770

Dorothee Bühler (Contact Author)

Leibniz Universität Hannover ( email )

Welfengarten 1
D-30167 Hannover, 30167
Germany

Ulrike Grote

University of Bonn - Center for Development Research (ZEF) ( email )

Walter-Flex-Str. 3, D-53113
Bonn
Germany

Leibniz Universität Hannover - Faculty of Economics and Management

Koenigsworther Platz 1
Hannover, 30167
Germany

Rebecca Hartje

Leibniz Universität Hannover ( email )

Welfengarten 1
D-30167 Hannover, 30167
Germany

Bopha Ker

Cambodia Development Resource Institute (CDRI) ( email )

56 Street 315
Phnom Penh
Cambodia

Do Truong Lam

Leibniz Universität Hannover ( email )

Welfengarten 1
D-30167 Hannover, 30167
Germany

Loc Nguyen

Leibniz Universität Hannover ( email )

Welfengarten 1
D-30167 Hannover, 30167
Germany

Trung Thanh Nguyen

Leibniz Universität Hannover ( email )

Welfengarten 1
D-30167 Hannover, 30167
Germany

Kimsun Tong

Cambodia Development Resource Institute (CDRI) ( email )

56 Street 315
Phnom Penh
Cambodia

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