Social Capital and Household Vulnerability: New Evidence from Rural Vietnam

41 Pages Posted: 17 Dec 2018

See all articles by Thang T. Vo

Thang T. Vo

University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City - School of Economics

Date Written: November 21, 2018

Abstract

Using the Vietnam Access to Resources Household Survey (VARHS) with a panel of households present from 2008 to 2016, the study investigates the impact of social capital on household vulnerability. The empirical results indicate that both commune shocks and household shocks are associated with the higher likelihood of having group memberships, except for the case of the political party. Group membership is also strongly influenced by a number of household characteristics. Most importantly, participation in local organizations could reduce both households' probability of being poor and the utility loss caused by covariate risks. In addition, social capital shows its influence on some intermediate factors, which in turn contribute to the lower vulnerability at the household level. While participation in the Women Union or the Farmer Union reinforces the households' ability to overcome negative shocks, the memberships of the Communist Party and the Farmer Union are associated with a higher level of saving. Members of the Communist Party are more likely to possess insurance, and members of the Women Union and the Farmer Union are able to access general information better. The findings imply that poverty reduction policies in rural Vietnam should consider the role of social capital, especially in the forms of group participation, as an effective informal coping strategy.

Keywords: Social capital, vulnerability, fixed effect, instrumental variable, VARHS, Vietnam

JEL Classification: C26, D10, D30, O10, R20

Suggested Citation

Vo, Thang Tat, Social Capital and Household Vulnerability: New Evidence from Rural Vietnam (November 21, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3288323 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3288323

Thang Tat Vo (Contact Author)

University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City - School of Economics ( email )

1A Hoang Dieu, Phu Nhuan
Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City
Vietnam

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