, Volume 39, Issue 8, pp 567–579 | Cite as

The Expansion of Farm-Based Plantation Forestry in Vietnam

  • Mats Sandewall
  • Bo Ohlsson
  • R. Kajsa Sandewall
  • Le Sy Viet


This study targets plantation forestry by farm households (small holders), which is increasing globally and most rapidly in China and Vietnam. By use of an interdisciplinary approach on three study sites in Vietnam, we examined the trends in farmers’ tree planting over time, the various pre-requisites for farm-based plantation forestry and its impact on rural people’s livelihood strategies, socio-economic status, income and security. The findings indicated a change from subsistence to cash-based household economy, diversification of farmers’ incomes and a transformation of the landscape from mainly natural forests, via deforestation and shifting cultivation, to a landscape dominated by farm-based plantations. The trend of transformation, over a period of some 30 years, towards cash crops and forestry was induced by a combination of policy, market, institutional, infrastructural and other conditions and the existence of professional farming communities, and was most rapid close to the industrial market.


Smallholder households Livelihood strategies Landscape Land use Policy Market 



The authors gratefully acknowledge the input by Formas, Sida and SLU in funding the study. We also appreciate Dr Phung van Khoa, Vietnam Forestry University and Dr Bruce Campbell, CIFOR, for their important comments and backstopping, Dr Jeremy Flower-Ellis for professional editorial assistance and the officials and farmers of the districts of Doan Hung, Ham Yen and Muong Khuong for their indispensible contribution and hospitality.


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Copyright information

© Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mats Sandewall
    • 1
  • Bo Ohlsson
    • 2
  • R. Kajsa Sandewall
    • 3
  • Le Sy Viet
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Forest Resource ManagementSLUUmeåSweden
  2. 2.SLUVästeråsSweden
  3. 3.SLUUmeåSweden
  4. 4.Vietnam Forestry UniversityHanoiVietnam

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