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Work and Retirement among the Elderly in Vietnam

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Friedman, Jed, Daniel Goodkind, Bui The Cuong, and Truong Si Anh. 2001. "Work and Retirement among the Elderly in Vietnam." Research on Aging, 23(2): 209-232. Sage.

This article examines patterns of work and retirement in Vietnam based on two recent surveys of the elderly. Vietnam provides a unique context for addressing elderly labor force participation due to its transition from a socialist to a market economy. As expected, elderly persons are less likely to be working to the extent that they are older or sick, although there is little variation by socioeconomic status. There are, however, distinct patterns of work stoppage across employment sectors (agricultural, state, and nonstate), due in part to the nature of work in these sectors. The data permit measurements across time, including job switches from one sector to another, or to retirement. Most notably, the data demonstrate the strong outflow of elderly employees from the state sector. We discuss explanations for these findings, paying particular attention to Vietnam's recent history and social policies designed to facilitate the transition toward a market-based economy.

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