Dr Kien Van Nguyen

BSc (Vietnam), Grad Dip Crawford School (ANU), Masters Enviro Manag Crawford School (ANU), PhD (ANU)
Research Fellow

Kien Van Nguyen took his PhD in sociology at the ANU in 2012 with the support of an Australian Leadership Award from the Australian government. His thesis was on ‘Social Capital, Livelihood Diversification, and Households’ Resilience to Floods in the Vietnamese Mekong River Delta. His field work was funded by EEPSEA (under IRDC) and was published as a research report and policy brief. He is currently Director of the Research Centre for Rural Development, An Giang University, Mekong Delta, Vietnam, and a post-doctoral research fellow at the Fenner School of Environment and Society, ANU.

Kien has published several papers in international journals and local newspapers. He has more than ten years’ experience in teaching and researching environmental issues in the Mekong River Delta and has presented his work at many international and national conferences on disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation, and conservation now the main focus of his research interests.

Kien did his Masters at the ANU under the Australian Development Scholarship in the areas of Environmental Management and Development, 2005 – 2006. Kien's Master thesis is entitled “An economic evaluation of flood dike construction in the Mekong Delta, Cost-benefit analysis of flood protection dike construction in An Giang Province”.

Recently, Kien has received several research grants from international research and academic institutions. He received the first fellowship by EEPSEA (under IDRC) to study “social capital, livelihood diversification and household resilience to floods in Vietnamese Mekong Delta, in 2010. In 2012, Kien received the second fellowship to study “Water governance, farming system and adaptation to climate-related to changes in “dike compartments”: A case study in An Giang province, Mekong Delta, Vietnam under the support of the M-POWER-CPWF Research Fellowships Program on Water Governance. Kien has also received a Seed Fund for Agricultural Research from SEARCA to study “Enhancing resilience of the community through climate change adaptation: Research and training activities for preservation and development of floating rice – vegetables farming systems in Vinh Phuoc commune, Tri Ton District, An Giang province, in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam” in 2014. Just recently, Kien has received a three year research project research grant under Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) to study “water governance of minority community in Mekong Delta, Vietnam”.

Most recently, Dr. Kien has selected to be a postdoctoral research fellow at the Australian National University under Luc Hoffmann Research Institute from Geneva Switzerland from December 2014 to July 2016.


Australian – German Red Cross - resilience livelihood project in An Giang and Kien Giang provinces of the Mekong Delta.

IFAD - climate adaptation project in Ben Tre and Tra Vinh provinces from January to March 2013.

GIZ - climate change adaptation project in An Giang province – assessment of floating rice farming system in Tri Ton district, from February to March 2013.

CARE international – credit for youths in Long An province in October 2011 and October 2012, baseline survey and data analysis.

Working experience (over sea)

Visiting Professor of the Organization for Cooperation with Industry and Regional Community, Saga University, Japan from 10 August 2014 to 31 September 2014.

Presented a lecturer on “land, people and housing in the Mekong Delta” for undergraduate students of engineering at New South Wales University campus, Australia Defense Force Academy, on 9th April 2012.

Presented a lecture on capacity building training workshop for Australian Youth Ambassadors at the Australian National University, to undertake voluntary work in Vietnam, 26-27 September 2011.

A research assistant (officer grade 5/6 Research), period 1st June to 31 October 2010) for Prof Stephen Howes to undertake a research project on “Climate Change and Fiscal Policy: A Report for APEC”, sponsored by World Bank. Stephen Howes is a Prof of Economics at Crawford School of Economics and Government, Director of IDEC program, ANU College of Asia & the Pacific, ANU.

Provided a lecture to Australian Youth Ambassadors to undertake voluntary work in Vietnam at the Australian National University, (November 2008). 

A permanent lecturer, head of Environmental and Resource Management Unit, at the Department of Soil Science and Natural Resources, faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, An Giang University, Vietnam.

Teaching several courses on “environmental and resource management”, “sustainable livelihoods”, and research methodology for undergraduate students (students of Integrated Rural Development) at the Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, An Giang University, Vietnam, from 2007 up to now.

Research interests

Mekong Nexus: Water Food Energy

  • Grady, C, Nguyen, V, Nguyen, V et al 2018, 'Who is being left behind? An analysis of improved drinking water and basic sanitation access in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta', Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development, vol. 8, no. 3, pp. 508-519pp.
  • Nguyen, V, Dumaresq, D & Pittock, J 2018, 'Impacts of rice intensification on rural households in the Mekong Delta: emerging relationships between agricultural production, wild food supply and food consumption [IN PRESS]', Food Security, vol. online, pp. 1-15.
  • Nguyen, V & Howie, C, eds, 2018, Conservation and Development of the Floating Rice Based Agro-Ecological Farming Systems in the Mekong Delta, Agricultural Publishing House, Hanoi.
  • Pittock, J & Nguyen, V 2017, Rice: The role of traditional floating rice systems, p. 10.
  • Nguyen, V, Dumaresq, D & Howie, C 2016, 'Dike Compartments in the Mekong Delta: Case Studies in Water Governance, Farming systems and Adaptation to Water-Regime Changes in An Giang Province, Vietnam', in D J H Blake and L Robins (ed.), Water Governance Dynamics in the Mekong Region, Strategic Information and Research Development Centre, Malaysia, pp. 279-310.
  • Nguyen, V 2016, 'The values and recovery progress of floating rice-based agro-ecological systems for adaptation to climate change in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta', World Conference on Climate Change, World Conference on Climate Change, Spain, pp. 1pp.
  • Liao, K, Le, A & Nguyen, V 2016, 'Urban design principles for flood resilience: Learning from the ecological wisdom of living with floods in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta', Landscape and Urban Planning, vol. 155, pp. 69-78pp.
  • Thuy, T, Phong, L, Nguyen, V et al 2016, 'The Impacts of Paraquat and Chlorpyrifos in Agricultural Production on Environment and Farmers' Health in An Giang Province, Vietnam', Imperial Journal of Interdisciplinary Research, vol. 2, no. 6, pp. 860-866.
  • Nguyen, V 2016, 'Community resilience to floods: a case study of mobile kindergartens in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam', in Helen James and Douglas Paton (ed.), The Consequences of Disasters: Demographic, Planning, and Policy Implications, Charles C Thomas Publisher Ltd, Springfield, United States, pp. 224-252.
  • Nguyen, V & Huynh, D 2015, 'FORUM - Conserving the benefits of floating rice in Vietnam'.
  • Nguyen, V, Vo, O & Huynh, D 2015, 'Comparing the costs and benefits of floating rice-based and intensive rice-based farming systems in the Mekong Delta', Asian Journal of Agricultural and Rural Development, vol. 5, no. 9, pp. 202-217.
  • Nguyen, V & Alexander, K 2014, 'Farmers' perceptions and responses to annual flood events in the Vietnamese Mekong River Delta: Adapting to Climate Change Impacts', in Stucker, D., Lopez-Gunn, E. (ed.), Adaptation to Climate Change through Water Resources Management: Capacity, Equity, and Sustainability, Routledge Taylor & Francis Group, UK, pp. 89-109.
  • Nguyen, V 2014, An Economic Evaluation of Flood Dike Construction in the Mekong Delta. Cost-Benefit Analysis of Flood Protection Dike Construction in An Giang Province, Lambert Academic Publishing, Saarbrucken, Germany.
  • Nguyen, V & James, H 2013, 'Measuring household resilience to floods: a case study in the Vietnamese Mekong River Delta', Ecology and Society, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 13-13.
  • Nguyen, V 2012, Social capital, livelihood diversification and household resilience to annual flood events in the Vietnamese Mekong River Delta.
  • Nguyen, V 2011, Social capital, livelihood diversification & household resilience to floods in Vietnam's Mekong River delta.

A PhD supervisory panel member for Mr Myint Zaw, PhD candidate at Crawford School of Public Policy, on-going supervision.

Co-supervised with Professor Philippe Lebailly, a master student from University de Liege, Belgium, Mr. Xavier SNYDERS from February to May 2014.

Supported a PhD student, Ms Grady Caitlin A, from Purdue University (USA) to carry out her PhD research on “Vulnerability assessment of drinking water, sanitation, and water resources in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam" from February to May 2014.