Civic Solidarity: Civicness and Willingness to Pay for the Poor in Vietnam


Yong Kyun Kim

Abstract: Despite rapid economic growth in recent decades, poverty remains a major concern among citizens in Vietnam; so does the widening income gap between the rich and the poor as income inequality has been on the rise. To ameliorate poverty and inequality, the government in Vietnam, as elsewhere in the world, has used “tax and transfer” mechanisms by which to redistribute wealth from richer citizens and regions to poorer ones. In this paper, I examine what determines citizens’ attitudes toward such redistributive “tax and transfer” policies in Vietnam. I use the 2017 PAPI (Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index) survey dataset which includes questions pertaining to the issue as well as a host of governance-related questions. My aim is to show how aspects of governance, such as participationand vertical accountability, at the local level (wards and communes) relate to citizens’ support for paying more tax for wealth transfers to the poor.

Keywords: poverty, civic solidarity, Vietnam.