Research orientations of Institute of Sociology



The inclusive theme of sociological research of Institute of Sociology (IOS) in the upcoming decade is the dynamic of social changes in Vietnam in the process of implementing Doi Moi, economic development, promoting industrialization and modernization in socialist orientation. Through annual research projects as well as other tasks assigned directly by higher levels, IOS will actively carry out the following research orientations.


1. New social issues emerging from the market economy development and international integration


Vietnam has entered a new development period after 30 years of implementing the comprehensive reform policy. Besides significant achievements, many social issues arising from the process of development and international integration that have not been overcome or solved, leading to potential risks of socio-economic and political instability. A series of new urgent and important social issues such as income, employment, housing, land, education, health care, crime, social vices… need to be thoroughly studied, analyzed and examined with scientific evidence. Institute of Sociology will study these newly emerged social issues in order to provide scientific ground for social management and development model in the period of development and international integration.


2. Social security and social work in sustainable development


The social-economic development in Vietnam in recent years has indicated that sustainable economic growth is not an easy goal to achieve. There are many challenges threatening national development, livelihoods and the stability of social life. A series of social security policies have been issued, such as those on medical insurance, occupation and income, poverty reduction. The system of policies on social, medical, unemployment insurance, social assistance and relief has continued to be revised and completed in a diversified and flexible orientation. However, current social security solutions are still limited and have not fully played an important role in social life. Social work has not effectively supported disadvantaged and vulnerable groups.


In this context, social security aiming at human development is a key factor of sustainable development. Institute of Sociology will carry out basic research on social security in Vietnam in order to complete laws and policies. Studies will focus on policies to increase access to basic social services, to raise coverage of insurances, to promote socialization of insurance services, and to change social aids to providing community-based social protection services. It is necessary to attach and integrate basic social security with the national and local socio-economic development strategies; diversify poverty reduction resources and methods by developing agriculture, rural area, education, vocational training and resolving unemployment; and mobilize more social resources together with the government to support disadvantaged people and families.


3. Cultural change and social inequality in development


Achievements of Doi Moi and urgent social issues are not only the outcome of social change but also the factors promoting more substantial social change. Vietnam has become an average-income country and economic life has been improved, but many social and culture aspects have deteriorated. The intricate trend of culture change in communities and social groups have barely examined by sociological research. In the following years, the IOS will study conditions and factors affecting cultural life change, especially on social, economic, politic factors, cultural interference within rural and urban areas, regions and countries through various information channels.


Social inequality is a key problem in the prospect of sustainable development of Vietnam. Socio-economic development and international integration has brought a relatively high growth rate, but this achievement is not distributed equally between regions and social groups. Poverty reduction is remarkably but unsustainable with actual risk of lagging behind and falling in middle-income trap. Increasing disparities and inequalities in opportunities and benefits lead to the exclusion the disadvantaged groups and weaken the motivation of sustainable development. IOS will promote research on this important topic to assess actual situation, analyze its effects, make forecast and propose solutions to promote positive social change and the goal of social equality and progression in Vietnam, providing scientific foundation to form development strategy of the country.


4. Population, human resource and community health under the impact of climate change and ecological environment recession


Vietnam is considered to have the advantage of large population in “golden population” period with abundant workforce. This is a very important resource for socio-economic development. However, Vietnam lacks high quality human resource. The contradiction between quantity and quality in human resource is becoming more intense, and needs urgent improvement.


Many new demographic issues require more attention such as population size, fertility change, high sex ratio at birth, aging population. Reproductive health, mother and child health care received investments in many years but have not lead to substantial change in population quality. Therefore, IOS will continue to study the relation between health and population in the setting of climate change, urbanization and ecological environment degradation. How to ensure the harmony between socio-economical development and environmental protection? How to develop social forecasts in the context of increasing climate change and natural disasters? How to improve quality of health care system in the transition to market economy? These issues need to be taken seriously in research to find out scientific solutions.


5. Public opinion survey to collect people opinion about important policies of the Party and government


Understanding of public opinion in various social issues is very important for the socio-political stability and economic development. Public opinion poll in a scientific way is the fastest and most reliable way to grasp public opinion. People will give higher support and agreement when their voice is listened and their opinions are considered in the process of deciding and making policy. Therefore, public opinion survey is one of important research activities of IOS. In order to provide a decision or policy that has large impact on life of people and society, public opinions and feedbacks on corresponding social issues must be collected and analyzed. With advantaged skills, knowledge and substantial experience in survey research methods, IOS will increase the quality of public opinion polls, try to grasp timely, sufficiently and accurately the thoughts, wills and expectations of the people in socio-economic development, pursuing the goals of prosperous people, strong nation, and fair, democratic and civilized society.


Institute of Sociology

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