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Distributed for National University of Singapore Press

Urbanization, Migration and Poverty in a Vietnamese Metropolis

Ho Chi Minh in Comparative Perspective

With the shift to a market economy, Ho Chi Minh City became a magnet for migrants and experienced rapid growth. Migration provides labor for economic growth in Ho Chi Minh City, and remittances sent by migrants to rural communities help to limit urban-rural inequality. But rural-urban migration creates a heavy burden for the city’s physical and social infrastructure. Urbanization, Migration, and Poverty in a Vietnamese Metropolis presents the results of a major interdisciplinary research project that gathered data on more than one thousand households in Ho Chi Minh City over a three-year period, and on migration flows at the urban destination and in four sending communities in different regions of Vietnam. The study shows that migration to Ho Chi Minh City has been shaped both by urban-rural inequality and by regionally diverse socio-cultural dynamics. It also demonstrates that despite official claims concerning poverty reduction in Ho Chi Minh City, urban poverty rose, particularly among migrants. The research findings indicate that microcredit and other poverty reduction programs had little impact on the socio-economic mobility of households, but that the well-being of many households improved as a result of growth-related economic opportunities as well as the effects of social networks and processes of household formation.

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Table of Contents

List of Tables
List of Figures
List of Maps
List of Photographs
1. Urbanization, Migration, and Poverty: Hồ Chí Minh City in Comparative Perspectives
Hy V. Luong
Part 1 Hồ Chí Minh City: Historical Contexts and Research Methodology
2. Hồ Chí Minh City: Economic Growth, Migration and Urbanization
Hy V. Luong
3. An Interdisciplinary Application of Social Science Research Methods to the Study of Urban Poverty
Nguyễn Quang Vinh, Phan Văn Dỗp, Nguyễn Thu Sa, and Nguyễn Qurόi
Part 2 Migration and Urbanization
4. Rural Migration to Hồ Chí Minh City: A Tale of Two Regions
Hy V. Luong
5. Gender and the Urban Integration of Migrants in Hồ Chí Minh City
Nguyễn Thị Nhung
6. The Impacts of Rural-to-Urban Migration on the Health of Working-Age Adult Migrants in Hồ Chí Minh City
Mark VanLandingham
7. Income Inequality and Health Care Access in Urban Vietnam: The Case of Hồ Chí Minh City
Hy V. Luong, Phạm Thành Duy, and Phan Thành Lòi
8. Residential Housing in the Process of Urbanization: Factors Influencing Housing Improvement in Hồ Chí Minh City
Trẩn Thánh and Hy V. Luong
9. Education Expenses, Migration, and the Schooling of Youth in Urban Vietnam
Hy V. Luong and Vũ Văn Ngọc
Part 3 Urban Poverty
10. Labor Market, Urban Informal Economy, and Earnings during Rapid Economic Growth: The Case of Hồ Chí Minh City
Hy V. Luong and Dileni Gunewardena
11. Poverty, Household Structure and Demography in Hồ Chí Minh City: An Analysis of Their Sociocultural Dimensions
Hy V. Luong
12. Gender of Household Heads and Living Standards in Urban Vietnam: The Case of Hồ Chí Minh City
Hy V. Luong and Nguyễn Thị Hòa
13. Social Network and Status Attainment in the Life of City Dwellers
Văn Ngọc Lan and Trẩn Đan Tâm
14. The Impact of Credit on Household Income Generation and Household Welfare among Poor Urban Households in Hồ Chí Minh City
Nguyễn Thị Mai Huong
Part 4 Comparative Perspectives
15. Urbanization and Migration in Southeast Asia
Philip Guest
16. Urban Poverty in the Context of Urban Transition: Southeast Asian Experiences
Michael Leaf
About the Contributors

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