Working Paper
Multidimensional poverty in Vietnam

Evidence from a rural household survey

For years, the international development community has been considering poverty as a multidimensional phenomenon, which takes into account not only income or consumption of the poor, but also their access to basic needs (education, health, etc.) and resources (credit, social network, etc.).

In Vietnam, since 2016, the Government has adopted the multidimensional approach to thoroughly measure poverty. This paper is an attempt to assess the state and evolution of multidimensional poverty in the rural areas of Vietnam, using data from the Vietnam Access to Resources Household Survey 2008–16.

Results show remarkable improvement of the living conditions in the rural areas, with a greater pace shown among the ethnic minority groups. However, there need to be more efforts to reduce the gap in poverty headcount ratios among Kinh and non-Kinh groups, households with male and female heads, and among households in different provinces.

Some of the main suggestions to reduce multidimensional poverty in Vietnam is to increase households’ access to health care services, education, clean water and hygienic latrines, and to improve the presence of such service providers near the households’ locations.