Family structure and rice cultivation/farming change in the Red River Delta of Vietnam

Authors: Tuyen Nghiem*, Vietnam National University, Hanoi
Topics: Agricultural Geography
Keywords: family structure, rice cultivation change, demography, Red River Delta Vietnam
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/8/2021
Start / End Time: 4:40 PM / 5:55 PM
Room: Virtual 36
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The most recent studies on rural growth and transformation in Vietnam show continuity and consistency in the rates and reasons of out-migration in rural areas. Finn Tarp (ed, 2017) points out that 19.6% of rural households having at least one migrant and 48% of them leaving their home villages for job opportunities in urban or industrial zones. This migration affects and changes the structure of the farming family, and as a result changes their way of farming methods and the distribution of agricultural labor in rice production.
This paper reports on findings of the situation regarding household demographics and choices made regarding how rice is cultivated in the upper, middle and lower regions of the Red River Delta (RRD) of Vietnam. The findings show that the rise of skipped generation families and single-parent households are closely related to changes in intra-household decisions on (1) access to land, (2) farm labor allocation (hiring mechanical or manual labor, hiring from within the commune or hiring people from outside, hiring labor to assist with different stages of farming) and (3) cultivation methods (land preparation, rice planting, cultivation and harvesting).
This research, funded by NASA, was implemented simultaneously in Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam. In the RRD, 244 households were randomly selected in the upper, middle and lower parts of the delta and were interviewed face-to-face about the changes in rice cultivation at household level in the period from 2000 to 2019. We also collected information about the demographic situation of the households.

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