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Special project: Agriculture (Phase 2, 2010-2012)

Response of rural households to agricultural income shocks

Grote, Ulrike, Dr. sc. agr. (Prof., Leibniz Universität Hannover)

Waibel, Hermann, Dr. sc. agr. (Prof., Leibniz Universität Hannover)

Summary

The overall objective of this sub-project (phase 2) is to analyze behaviour and strategies taken by rural households to reduce vulnerability to poverty in Thailand and Vietnam. It will build on the outcomes of the first phase of the project and will use the first two household surveys to be complemented by a new wave of two further surveys as a basis. The new proposal puts a stronger focus on the following three aspects: first, the changing role of agriculture before and after the recent food price crisis and the current economic crisis will be investigated in Thailand. Second, the capacity of agriculture to adjust to environmental shocks in Vietnam will be analyzed by focusing on floods or other natural disasters which happened there during the time of the panel surveys. These shocks lead to yield and income losses of agricultural households which again impact on the intra-household demand for labour including children. Since the economic crisis and environmental shocks lead to major observable shifts of migration flows, an analysis of migration which serves as a coping strategy will be integrated into this research. Third, structural adjustment processes in Thailand and Vietnam will be compared and assessed. Research related to these three aspects also aims at advancing theoretical concepts by incorporating dynamic poverty measures in agricultural household models. Synergy effects with other disciplines will be further exploited.