Statistic Research on Assessment of Sustainable Development in Vietnam

The main content of Chapter 3 deals with the data collection of the indicators in the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development, thereby the application of the calculation process described in Chapter 2 to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development. With different formulas, the author comes up with many different results for indicators of sustainable development. To be able to select appropriate methods, the author used methods of statistical graphs and tables for comparison and analysis. With the available analyses, the author choses the most appropriate formula for the data conditions in the period of 2001-2010. Although it was only relative due to the limit of indicators in quantity and the inconsistent sources of data, the aggregate index of sustainable development partly reflected the development process in Vietnam during the 10-year period from 2001 to 2010. That proves the feasibility of the research thesis.

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1INTRODUCTION 1. The urgency of the topic Sustainable development is not only the process of economic development, the increase of output volume but also the sustainability of the development, which ensure the progress in terms of economic structure, society and the balance of ecological environment. Today, sustainable development is one of the most important missions of every country, including Vietnam. In order to monitor the country’s development, Vietnam has set up a system of statistic index on sustainable development with specific target. However, the indicators in such a system may have some opposite fluctuation. Some of them develop well over time, while a few others turn to be worse, affecting the development process negatively. This situation causes some difficulties in assessing and analyzing the trend of sustainable development. There have been organizations and individuals being interested in making aggregate indexes for assessment of sustainable development so as to obtain a broad overview of this issue. However, up to date there has been no system with specific recommendations being applied in practice. This context has encourages the author to work on the thesis “Statistic Research on Assessment of Sustainable Development in Vietnam”, suggesting a clear, specific and feasible method to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development. The author then used the available data of Vietnam in the period 2001 – 2010 to test the method. This thesis, therefore, contributes in answering the questions by managers “How to assess the real situation of sustainable development in Vietnam?” and “How was the reality of Vietnam’s sustainable development in the period 2001 – 2010?” 2. Research objectives The overall purpose of the thesis is to formulate a method of calculating the aggregate index for sustainable development so as to implement it in assessing the real sustainability of development in Vienam. Specifically, the thesis: - systemizes and clarifies the contents related to sustainable development and the system of sustainable development index - suggests a method to calculate individual indicators, component indicators and 2 aggregate index for assessment of sustainable development on the basis of the available system of indicators in Vietnam - calculates, on the pilot basis, the aggregate index of sustainable development in Vietnam in the period 2001 – 2010 3. Research targets and methodology The thesis’ research target is sustainable development. Research scope: + The thesis collect and synthesize data, calculate and analyze aggregate index of sustainable development in the territory of Vietnam + Time target of the research: 10 years from 2001 to 2010, to be suitable to the 10-year strategy for socio-economic development of Vietnam. The following statistic methods are used for research purposes: - Desk research. This is one of the method for data collection in sociological survey. Basing on the secondary data of sustainable development and the way to calculate the aggregate indexes, the author provides a broad overview of research target, which later serves as a basis for the later assessment. - Statistic tables and graphs. They are used to synthesize and demonstrate data and statistic targets of sustainable development over time. 4. Contribution of the thesis Through this thesis, the author contributes some new knowledge in terms of theory and practice of statistic performance, specifically: First, the thesis formulates a method to calculate an aggregate index of sustainable development in Vietnam, whereby makes it clear the way to calculate individual indicators, component indicators and then aggregate index; identifies the higher bound and lower bound of each indicator. This is a new positive contribution in term of theory for the future studies in sustainable development in Vietnam. Second, in term of practice, the thesis gives out analyses and assessments of sustainability of Vietnam’s development over the period 2001 – 2010. The author uses real data of Vietnam and the above-mentioned formula of calculating aggregate index on a pilot scheme, analyses the reality of sustainable development in Vietnam over the past 10 years. The research results will help Government organizations demonstrate a method 3to synthesize, assess and compare the sustainability of the country’s development. Besides, the thesis opens a new direction of perfecting the existing system of statistic index of sustainable development as well as selects a specific method of assessment in the coming another 10 years. 5. Structure of the thesis After the Introduction, which mentions the urgency, objectives, target and scope of the research, the thesis introduces a research overview. The main literature of the thesis is divided into 3 parts: Chapter 1: Overview of sustainable development Chapter 2: Develop a method to calculate aggregate index for assessing sustainable development in Vietnam Chapter 3: Pilot calculation and analysis of aggregate index for assessing sustainable development in Vietnam in the period 2001 – 2010 CHAPTER 1. OVERVIEW OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT 1.1.Concepts of development and sustainable development 1.1.1.Development Development is a popular term used in official documents and daily life. Over the different stages of historical development, world economic researchers have made a number of concepts of development. The concept of development perfects itself along the development of human society. At present, this concept basically keeps its contents developed in the past decade but with more emphasis on the human rights. Economic development covers economic growth, progress in economic structure and social progress. 1.1.2. Sustainable development The term “sustainable development” came out first in 1980s in the document Strategy for world conservation published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) with a very simple notion – "Human development is impossible to focus only on economic development, but it should respect the natural needs of the society and the impacts on ecological environment " [40, p.18-19]. 4 This concept was popularized in 1987 thanks to the Brundtland Report (also called the Report on Our Common Future) by the World Committee for Environment and Development (WCED) under the United Nations. The report made it clear that “sustainable development is the development which can meets the current needs without negative impacts and damages to the ability to meet the needs of future generations" [41, p.37]. Sustainable development was known in Vietnam in late 1990s. Basing on the above concepts and the nation’s real practice, Vietnamese economic researchers developed the concept of sustainable development as a basis for completing development targets of the country. They are healthy development, where the one’s development does not harm others’ benefits, individual development does not damage the community’s benefits, development of one community does not negatively affect that of another community, the development of today’s generation does not intervene the interests of the next generation, and the development of human being does not threat life or worsen living conditions of other creatures on the planet. 1.2. The necessity for implementation of sustainable development Everybody in the world would like to perfect his life in order to create magic development ever seen. However, our Earth with its natural conditions cannot meet those unlimited expectations of human being. Natural resources are limited, so they will come to end, natural conditions may become more severe. This create serious conflicts, which require development in harmony between the people and their surrounding environment. Therefore, implementation of sustainable development is considered the top priority of each nation. Organizations and countries, depending on their various objectives, point out the necessity of developing sustainably and various contents of sustainable development. In Vietnam, the issue of sustainable development is made in details in various political documents, specifically in the Resolutions of the 4th Plenary National Convention of the Communist Party of Vietnam. According to this Resolution, the 10- year strategy for socio-economic development should “develop fast, efficiently and sustainably, achieve economic growth along with accomplishment of social progress and equality and environment protection”, “create socio-economic development in close link with environment protection and improvement, ensuring the harmony 5between man-made environment and natural environment, conserving ecological diversity.” [36]. In the next 10 years from 2011 to 2020, sustainable development is a consistent requirement in the Socio-economic Strategy set by CPV in the 11th Plenary Meeting: “Sustainable development is a basis for fast development, which create resources for sustainable development in its turn. Fast development and sustainable development must go together in planning, plans and policies of socio-economic development " [37]. 1.3.Contents of sustainable development 1.3.1.Contents of sustainable development, according to some international organizations The Earth Summit on Environment and Development (Rio de Janero 6/1992) and the ASEM Youth Dialogue on sustainable development agreed that sustainable development consists of four dimentions, namely economic, social, environmental and regulatory. Each country should have its regulatory dimension as a basis for the planning and policy making, as well as the targets to achieve and the communication for public. Therefore, these two organizations made regulatory dimension equally important as the three main dimensions which create the sustainable development in economy, society and environment. Following another approach, two Canadian environmentalists named Jacobs and Sadler define sustainable development in its nature as an aggregate and systematic development. Seeing the relationship between three factors of economy, society and environment, Jacobs and Sadler form sustainable development with a triagle of these factors, of which environment is put on top and the factor of regulation is included in social factor. This model is later developed into a 3-extreme chart by Mohan Munasingle, a World Bank specialist. This approach is popularized all over the world today for it is a combination of the 3 factors with a total force to create the stability and sustainability for each nation. 1.3.2. Vietnam In 2004, Vietnam established its own sustainable development program called AGENDA-21. In this program, Vietnam makes its clear overall objective of sustainable development as “to achieve abundance of materials, richness of culture and spirit, equality of citizens and consensus of society, harmony between human and 6 nature; to develop in a close, rational and harmonious link of 3 factors including economic development, social development and environment protection”. This is the basis for sustainable development on 3 factors of economy, society and environment. 1.4. A system of indicators of sustainable development 1.4.1. Some general issues of the system of statistic index A system of index is a collection of indicators, which includes not any indicators but a systematically selected group of indicators to reflect 2 major contents: the most important aspects and features of population and the basic relationship between the aspects of population as well as between the studied population and their related phenomena within the limit of research scope. To obtain the relevant system of statistic index which can be used to assess the real situation of development, the system must meet 4 requirements: research objectives, features reflected, feasibility and number of indicators. Based on these requirements, the thesis assess the relevance and feasibility of the system of statistic index for sustainable development applied in Vietnam on a later day. 1.4.2.Studies of statistic index system for sustainable development in the world In early 1995, to meet the requirement of UN Committee for Sustainable Development (UN CSD), the UN Committee for Economic and Social Issues in cooperation with experts from various international organization and other members established a system of statistic index includind 134 national indicators of sustainable development. In 2001, UN CSD introduced a recommended system of statistic index including 15 major topics, 38 sub-topics and 58 indicators. This system of index was adjusted one more time in 2006, serving as a basis for nations to establish their own system of statistic index for sustainable development. Other organizations under the UN and various social and non-government organizations also study and introduce their national index e.g. index of human development, index of eco footstep, etc. Different nations also introduce strategies for sustainable development AGENDA-21 together with a system of statistic index for sustainable development with a large range of indicators and contents, e.g Indonesia (21 indicators), China (80 indicators), UK (15 indicators), USA (32 indicators)... 71.4.3.Studies of statistic index system for sustainable development in Vietnam Along with the world trend Vietnamese researchers have studied to set up its own system of statistic index for sustainable development. The research process gets the attention of various ministries, industries and organizations. The results include the introduction of some systems of index. Over time, the system of statistic index for sustainable development has been perfected and implemented in real life. With expectation to have a unanimous system of statistic index, on 12 April 2012, The Prime Minister signed Decision 432/QĐ-TTg to approve the Vietnam’s Strategy for Sustainable Development period 2011 - 2020. Pursuant to this decision, the system of statistic index for supervison and assessment of Vietnam’s sustainable development period 2011 - 2020 consists of 30 indicators with data sources and implementation plan as described in Table 1.1. Table 1.1. System of statistic index for supervision and assessment of Vietnam’s sustainable development No. Indicators Organization in charge of collection Plan I Aggregate indicators 1 Green GDP (in VND or USD) MPI (GSO) 2015 2 Human Development Index (HDI) (0-1) MPI (GSO) 2015 3 Index on Environment Sustainability (0-1) MPI (GSO) 2015 II Economic indicators 4 Efficient use of investment capital (ICOR) (increase of implemented investment capital by 1 GDP dong) MPI (GSO) 2011 5 Labor productivity (USD/worker) MPI (GSO) 2011 6 Proportion of contribution by productivity of aggregate factors in overall growth rate (%) MPI (GSO) 2015 7 Decrease in energy consumption in production of 1 GDP unit (%) MPI (GSO) 2015 8 No. Indicators Organization in charge of collection Plan 8 Proportion of recycle energy in the energy consumption structure (%) Ministry of Trade and Industry 2011 9 Consumption Price Index (CPI) (% compared with the last December) MPI (GSO) 2011 10 Current Balance (bil. USD) State Bank 2011 11 State deficit (%/GDP) Ministry of Finance 2011 12 Sovereign Debt (%/GDP) Ministry of Finance 2011 13 Foreign Debt (%/GDP) Chairing: Ministry of Finance 2011 Cooperating: State Bank III Social Indicators 14 Rate of Poverty (%) MPI (GSO) 2011 15 Rate of Unemployement (%) MPI (GSO) 2011 16 Rate of trained employees working in the economy (%) MPI (GSO) 2011 17 Coefficient of inequality in income distribution (Gini coefficient) (times) MPI (GSO) 2011 18 Gender Ratio at birth (boys/100 girls) Ministry of Health 2011 19 Number of students/10.000 people (students) Ministry of Education and Training 2011 20 Number of Internet subscribers (subscribers/100 people) Ministry of Information and Communication 2011 21 Rate of population benefitted from social, health and unemployment insurance (%) Viet Nam Social Security 2011 9No. Indicators Organization in charge of collection Plan 22 Number of death by traffic accidents (people/100.000 people/year) Ministry of Police 2011 23 Rate of villages recognized to meet criteria of new rural community (%) Ministry of Argriculture and Rural Development 2015 IV Indicatiors of environment and natural resources 24 Rate of forest coverage (%) Ministry of Argriculture and Rural Development 2011 25 Rate of land areas protected and maintaining bio- diversity (%) Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources 2011 26 Area of deteorated land (mil. ha) Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources 2015 27 Decrease of underground and surface water volume (m3/person/year) Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources 2011 28 Rate of days with high level of toxicated air exceeding the accepted level (%) Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources 2011 29 Rate of urban areas, industrial and processing zones and industrial clusters with standardized processing of solid wastes and waste water to meet relevant national standards and technical requirements (%) - Chairing: Ministry of Construction 2011 - Cooperating: Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources; Ministry of Trade and Industry 30 Rate of solid waste collected and processed to meet relevant national standards and technical requirements (%) - Chủ trì: Ministry of Construction 2011- Phối hợp: Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Source:Decision 432/QĐ-TTg dated 12 April 2012 by the Prime Minister) 10 CONCLUSION OF CHAPTER 1 Chapter 1 presents an overview of sustainable development, including concepts, necessity and major contents. Sustainable development is a firm combination and inter-relations between economic development and social issues and environment factors in harmony, stability and flexibility. These factors present an urgent priority to every nations, including Vietnam. Contents of sustainable development concentrate in three areas of economy, society and environment, which should be equally treated. These contents are bases for developing a system of statistic index for sustainable development in the world and in Vietnam as well. From this suggestion Chapter 1 introduces some available systems of statistic index for sustainable development analyses in depth the current system of statistic index for sustainable development of Vietnam. This is the latest system introduced by the Government, with presence of some aggregate indicators to give assessment of various aspects. The later part of the Chapter analyzes the similarity and difference of Vietnam’s system of statistic index for sustainable development and the system recommended by the UN Council for sustainable development. Besides, the author points out some limitations in the system to address in the coming time. In the recommended system of statistic index the assessment will be implemented on separated indicators, which reflect each and every dimension of sustainable development. However, if stopping at that point, the thesis cannot come up with an overall conclusion on the results of sustainable development in the country. There should be an assessment on the process of sustainable development over time to compare and withdraw experience for development. Right here is the gap in both theory and practice calling for further research in this thesis. 11 CHAPTER 2. DEVELOPING A METHOD FOR CALCULATION OF AGGREGATE INDEX FOR ASSESSMENT OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN VIETNAM 2.1. Overview of method for development of aggregate index ng quan nghiên cứu về phương pháp xây dựng chỉ số tổng hợp There are various methods developed to calculate the aggregate indes, specifically: First, to calculate the human development index (HDI), UNDP use the simple formula of average multiple of the 3 component indicators:HDI = I / I / I / In the formula to calculate the aggregate index, the component indicators are calculated using the theory of min-max data standardization. To calculate and analyze data in the simplest way, the UN Statistics Organization has guided how to calculate component indicators so that they can receive value between [0,1]. In addition, UNDP’s Report on human development in 1991 introduced another indicator, namely the indicator of human’s freedom. The study implemented simple calculation method: give 1 point for each indicator which ensure the right for freedom, and 0 point for those violating it. After that, the accumulated scores of 40 indicators will serve as the basis for classifying nations about ensuring human right for freedom. Besides, a study by Yale University (USA) in cooperation with Columbia University and the World Economic Forum introduced a formula to calculate Environmental Performance Index (EPI) 2008 and Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI) 2005 [39]. According to this method, the aggregate index (ESI scores) is calculated in 2 ways: direct calculation from 21 indicators and indirect calculation from 5 topics of 5 main groups of issues. The simple arithmetic average (without weight) is used to calculate the indicators. The weighted arithmetic average, in which weights are determined by the experts of the study, is used to calculate the topics. There are several methods to determine the specific weight for each indicator in the system of statistic index, namely the general method by Dr. Nguyễn Trọng Hậu from the Institute for Europe Studies, method of statistic analysis using correlation regression (multivariate regression) and key element analysis, semi-matrix or expert methods. 12 Through this overview it can be seen that various methods are used to calculate the aggregate index. However, studies focusing on the aggregate index of sustainable development in Vietnam are rare, with only one study titled “Identify a set of indicators of sustainable development and develop a database for supervising sustainable development in Vietnam” within the framework of project VIE/01/021 implemented at the Ministry of Planning and Investment. In that study the weighted arithmetic average method is used to calculate the aggregate index. However, the suggestion given in this study just introduce a direction to calculate the index of national sustainable development but not a specific method for calculation. 2.2.Suggestion on a method to calculate the aggregate indext for sustainable development in Vietnam 2.2.1.Method to calculate individual indicators 2.2.1.1.Selection of a formular to calculate individual indicators First, regarding positive indicators: the higher the values of these indicators, the more sustainable the development. Using the method to calculate the aggregare index introduced by the UN in HDI calculation, one of the following two formulas: Formula 2.1: I = Real value − Minimum valueMaximum value − Minimum value Formula 2.2:I = ln(Real value) − ln(Minimum value)ln(Maximum value) − ln(Minimum value) Second, regarding negative indicator: the higher the value of indicators, the less sustainable the indicators and vice versa. The thesis will be adjusted toward positive indicators. When the indicator value increases to nearly 1, the nation’s development is more sustainable. In that the formula will be opposite. Formula 2.3: I = 1 − Real value − Minimum valueMaximum value − Minimum value Formula 2.4:I = 1 − ln(real value) − ln(minimum value)ln(maximum value) − ln(minimum value) Third, regarding central-tendency indicators: the closer the indicator’s value to 13 a central value, the more sustainable the development. The following are formulas 2.5 and 2.6: I = |real value − central value||maximum value − central value| and: I = |ln(real value) − ln(central value)||ln(maximum value) − ln(central value)| Thus, depending on its characteristics, each indicator will be calculated according to a relevant specific formula. 2.2.1.2.Identify minimum and maximum values Within the scope of this thesis the author gives out 2 alternatives for the following reasons: First, regarding the group of positive and negative indicators: - Maximum value: If the indicators’ maximum limit possible can be identified, it will also be used as maximum value. If it is impossible to identified the values or if there is no instruction on sustainable limit of those values, the maximum values to be taken will be the value of trend, i.e. the maximum value of the indicators during the study period. - Minimum value: Similar to maximum values, if the minimum limit of the values can be identified, the miimum value will take. Other indicators can take the value of trend as its minimum value. Second, regarding the group of central-tendency indicators. - Central value: If there is information about the optimum value of the indicator, the central value will take that value. For the rest of indicators, the choice will be made upon each indicator’s characteristics. - Maximum value: the value of the biggest difference (either positive or negative) from the central value in the time series. 2.2.2. Methods to calculate component indicators 2.2.2.1.Aritmethic or geometric average? Both the averages take the common feature of general average. However, the geometric average respects the equality than the arithmetic one. An indicator with high value cannot make the overall index’s value rocket if the geometric average formula is 14 used. Therefore, to best reflect the reality and to make the aggregate index more meaningful in the case of data diversity, the geometric average is the best choice. 2.2.2.2. Simple or weighted geometric average? The thesis introduces both two methods of calculation. The real data collected will decide which method would be suitable in the current conditions of Vietnam. The most important in developing weighted geometric average formula is to give a suitable weight to individual specific indicators. Method of semi-matrix is a simple and quite effective because it takes the nation’s development strategy in a specific period into cosideration. 2.2.3.Formula to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development According to the content of sustainable development and the Vietnamese perspective of development, sustainable development means a balanced and harmonious development between three aspects, namely economy, society and environment, with no bias on any of these aspects. Therefore, the contribution of each aspect into development is equal. The author, therefore, choose the simple geometric average formula (without weight) to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development. This method of calculation ensures the coverage of development contents and their meanings and is easy to implement. Formula: 4 MTXHKTTH IIIII  Besides, in the situation of date being not or not fully available, if the number of indicators in the group is not enough to represent the group of indicators, the component index calculated will not reflect accurately the reality of development. Then, it is necessary to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development directly from individual indicators, accepting their equal role and contribution to the index value. The overall formula is: n n 1i iII    According to the above formula, the aggregate index of sustainable development is always valued between 0 – 1. Different values will show different levels of sustainable development. From this finding, the author suggests a scale to measure the development to identify the level of sustainable development in Vietnam when the calculation results of the aggregate index is completed, as follows: 15 0.0 - 0.2: develop unsustainably 0.2 - 0.4: develop fairly sustainably 0.4 - 0.6: develop relatively sustainably 0.6 - 0.8: develop quite sustainably 0.8 - 1.0: develop very sustainably CONCLUSION OF CHAPTER 2 From the available system of statistic index for sustainable development Chapter 2 has reviewed various studies on aggregate index and recommended a method to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development in Vietnam. This is also the main content of the thesis. The indicators in the system of statistic index of sustainable development are classified into 3 groups of positive, negative and internal indicators. The author identify formulas to calculate individual indicators and their minimum and maximum values in each group. From the individual indicators the author analyzes and selects various formulas to calculate component indicators using the averages: arithmetic or geometric averages, simple or weighted geometric averages. Then the author goes on with identifying the weights in the formula for weighted averages. The last content in Chapter 2 refers to developing a formula to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development. The author gives out 2 formulas to calculate the average directly from individual indicators in the case when data are not available and indirectly from component indicators when data collected mostly in full. After developing formulas, the author deals with the questions e.g. whether the formulas are really different in assessing the sustainability of the development, and which formula or method are practical enough to be implemented in reality. These questions cannot be answered with theoretical arguments but need being proved by real evidence. The real data of Vietnam’s development in the period 2001 – 2010 are used in the light of the above theory for experimental calculation, then for selecting appropriate formulas to prove the feasibility of the study. 16 CHAPTER 3. EXPERIMENTAL CALCULATION AND ANALYSIS OF FLUCTUATION IN VIETNAM’S INDEX OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT PERIOD 2001 – 2010 3.1. Experimental calculation of aggregate index of sustainable development in Vietnam in the period 2001 – 2010 3.1.1.Current situation of data of statistic indicators in Vietnam The system of statistic index of sustainable development selected for calculating the aggregate index of sustainable development is the system used for development plan in the period 2011 - 2020. Therefore, when using it for experimental calculation for the period 2000 - 2010, the real data are not sufficient. There are many indicators not sufficiently collected. In fact, there are only 16 indicators having enough data for experimental calculation. 3.1.2. Calculation of individual indicators The individual indicators are calculated by the relevant formulas mentioned in Chapter 2, after identifying each indicator and from the available time series and selecting the relevant maximum and minimum values. 3.1.3. Calculation of component indicators Formulas mentioned in Chapter 2 are used to calculate the appropriate component indicators in two cases: the formulas of simple arithmetic average and weighted arithmetic average. 3.1.4. Calculation of aggregate index of sustainable development Using the formula recommended in Chapter 2, the author calculates and obtains the results of index of sustainable development with 3 different formulas: (1) direct calculation from individual indicators; (2): calculation from component indicators which are computed by the formula of simple geometric average; (3): calculation from component indicators which are computed by the formula of weighted geometric average. The calculation results are shown in Table 3.1. 17 Table 3.1. Aggregate index of sustainable development of Vietnam in the period 2001 - 2010 by different methods of calculation Unit: time Year Method 2001 \\2002 2003 2004 2005 (1) 0.295 0.344 0.370 0.434 0.494 (2) 0.414 0.453 0.476 0.522 0.568 (3) 0.415 0.459 0.483 0.530 0.569 Year Method 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 (1) 0.492 0.403 0.316 0.284 0.420 (2) 0.569 0.509 0.446 0.420 0.529 (3) 0.574 0.523 0.460 0.435 0.565 3.1.4.Comments on the methods of calculating the aggregate index of sustainable development The three methods of calculation mentioned above show three different results. The two following cases are observed: - When the data of indicators were not sufficient, one indicator could not be representative for the whole big group, so in this case the first formula (calculated directly from individual indicators) better reflected the reality of sustainable development in Vietnam for the past 10 years. - When there were enough data of indicators, the second method of calculation, which was to use indirect average through component indicators, would be more suitable. The aggregate index of sustainable development also needs building based odeveloping on the basis of representative levels for each field. Thus, due to the fact that there were not enough data of the indicator system in the period of 2001 - 2010, the study would select results from the first method of calculation, which is to use simple geometric average of individual indicators as the basis for the analysis of the current status of sustainable development in Vietnam. 18 3.2. Analyzing trend of substainable development in Vietnam in the period 2001 – 2010 3.2.1. Choosing the method of analysis Using the method of statistical tables and graphs, we will have an intuitive overview on the trend of sustainable development of Vietnam for the past 10 years. 3.2.2. Trend of substainable development in Vietnam in the period of 2001 - 2010 Selec the method of calculating the index of substainable development basing on individual indicators, using simple geometric average. Calculation results are represented in Figure 3.1. Figure 3.1. Vietnam’s index of Sustainable development in the period 2001 - 2010 Actual development of Vietnam in the period of 2001 – 2010 was not really stable and sustainable . In the early days of this decade (from 2001 to 2005 ), the development trend was quite good. The index of substainable development gradually increased over time. If sustainable development was weak at 0.280 in 2001, it reached the average level with the value of 0.470 in 2006. The sustainable development slightly decreased since 2006 and sharply went down from 2007 to 2009. The index of sustainable development in 2009 only stayed in the range of a fairly sustainable development; in other words, the substainability was weak, even worse than that in 2001 with the value of 0.270. However, Vietnam had a breakthrough in 2010 with the 19 index of substainable development of 0.400. Although it still did not came back to the level of substainable development of the mid-decade, in general Vietnam tended to recover its momentum by 2010. Which of the group(s) of indicators, among those having contributed to the sustainable development, held strong fluctuation which affected the overall fluctuation? This question is answered as in the graph of Figure 3.2. Figure 3.2. Fluctuation of Economic and Social Sectors indicators in the period 2001 - 2010 It is easy to see the significant improvement of society when people's lives gradually progressed year by year. However, this indicator group had relatively low values compared to the economic indicators. It means that the improvement of living did not keep pace with the economic development of Vietnam. Life and living environment were still the issues that needed attention and priorities to be addressed. The changing trend of the indicators in the economic field was similar to the general changes of sustainable development. Among those economic indicators, which indicators made a significant impact on such general volatility, if considered in two years of sharp decline in economy 2008 and 2009? In 2008, the current account balance was the main reason for the economic decline, being the lowest in the 10-year period with deficit of $10.79 billion, much lower than the other years. The second reason was the consumer price index CPI or inflation (CPI in 2008 was up to 123%). 20 Figure 3.3. Changes in group of economic indicators 2008 - 2009 In contrast to 2008, in 2009 the government implemented stimulus packages that made certain recovery of international economic relations as well as kept the speed of increasing consumer price within one single digit (by using the solution package of curbing inflation, tightening the monetary policy); however, this caused a decrease in the contribution proportion of TFP among the indicators to the general growth and the state budget deficit. 3.3. General assessment on the index of substainable development and some recommendations 3.3.1. General assessement on the index of substainable development From the results of experimental calculation of the indext of sustainable development in Vietnam in the period of 2001 - 2010, the author comes back to evaluate the suitability of the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development as well as the formulas proposed in Chapter 2. First, for the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development: The number of indicators was quite large, making the process of calculating the overall index become cumbersome; some indicators do not ensure the consistency of calculating methods, data sources, and the reporting periods, which cause many difficulties in data collection, affecting the accuracy of the calculated results; there was 0.000 0.100 0.200 0.300 0.400 0.500 0.600 0.700 0.800 0.900 1.000 ICOR NSLĐ XH Tỷ trọng TFP CPI Cán cân vãng lai Bội chi NSNN Nợ nước ngoài 2008 2009 21 an overlap that leads to the duplication of the aggregate index of substainable development. Second, for the proposed formulas: Proposal of stages of calculating the aggregate index of sustainable development is based on the overall study and analysis of the available system of statistical indicators. The indicators calculated in the same period had to be integrated in the scope and methods of calculation in order to ensure the comparability. However, for each different stage of development, there might have different changes. 3.3.2. Some recommendations of and solutions to the statistical work on substainable development in Vietnam 3.3.2.1. Recommendations - For the Government and the Council of National Sustainable Development: there is a need to organize a specialized department in order to analyze the statistical indicators collected, thereby evaluate the status of sustainable development in Vietnam in each period. On that basis, the Council of National Sustainable Development can propose directions, policies, and goals of sustainable development for the next years to the government. These development goals will be the basis to determine the actual maximum and minimum values in the formula of calculating separate indicators as proposed. - For the statistical industry: It is necessary to carry out re-checking the indicators in the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development so as to get the best indicator system to assess the development process in Vietnam. The GSO also needs to do research in order to provide specific methods of calculation, integrating the aggregate index of sustainable development, helping the Council of National Sustainable Development in assessing and analyzing the development situation of the country. - For the related ministries and ministerial-level agencies: it is important to coordinate with related agencies, unifying the methodology of calculating some new indicators, understanding and periodically reporting the statistical figures required so as to summarize, process, and analyze data in time. 3.3.2.2. Solutions - For the multi-level model of statistical reports: 22 Figure 3.1. Multi-level model of statistical reports - For the system of statistical reports: Sustainable development is also a macro problem and should be accumulated in in quantity in a long time. Therefore, the data of the statistical indicators of sustainable development should be periodically aggregated every year by the responsible agencies. CONCLUSION OF CHAPTER 3 The main content of Chapter 3 deals with the data collection of the indicators in the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development, thereby the application of the calculation process described in Chapter 2 to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development. With different formulas, the author comes up with many different results for indicators of sustainable development. To be able to select appropriate methods, the author used methods of statistical graphs and tables for comparison and analysis. With the available analyses, the author choses the most appropriate formula for the data conditions in the period of 2001-2010. Although it was only relative due to the limit of indicators in quantity and the inconsistent sources of data, the aggregate index of sustainable development partly reflected the development process in Vietnam during the 10-year period from 2001 to 2010. That proves the feasibility of the research thesis. Through calculation and graphical analysis, the aggregate index of sustainable Related ministries, ministrial-level agencies Bureaus of Statistics in provinces and cities Specialized divisions – General Statistics Office Council of National Substainable Development Related departments Office for national substainable development Governm ent 23 development shows that the results of the development of Vietnam was not really stable and sustainable as expected in the strategy of socio-economic development in the period of 2001-2010. The economy developed unstably due to the influence from the general scence of the world as well as of the related policies. Although people's lives were improved, they were still quite low, only moderate. In the last part of the chapter, the author returns to assess the indicator system as well as the proposed formulas, basing on the calculation results and analysis of the aggregate index of sustainable development in the period 2001-2010 in Vietnam. Thereby, the author makes some recommendations and suggests solutions to perfect the statistical work in developing a mechanism of collecting, summarizing, and publishing the data of sustainable development in the future. CONCLUSION Sustainable development – the process of balanced and harmonious development of all three factors of economy, society, and environment – is the final goal of most countries in the world today. The “Strategy of Socio-economic Development of Vietnam 2001 – 2020” has determined the development perspective in this period as "Rapid development closely associates with substainable development, sustainable development is the consistent goal in the strategy". To assess the performance, the Government launched the system of statistical indicators to monitor and evaluate sustainable development. Thereby, it is crucial to have the aggregate index to assess the process of substainable development basing on this indicator system. To contribute to the implemetation of that requirement, the thesis has studied and solved some basic problems as follows: - Generalize the concepts, the need for, and the content of sustainable development. This is the rationale for studying and analyzing the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development. - Summarize some systems of statistical indicators of sustainable development available in the world; generalize and analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the system of statistical indicators of sustainable development in Vietnam. The thesis analyzed and proposed solutions of improvement to the indicator system issued by the 24 Government, making conditions of better assessing the current status of sustainable development of the country. - Recommend the aggregated evaluation process of sustainable development, including formulas and methods to determine the factors in calculating individual indicators, component indicators, and aggregate index of sustainable development. This is the key content of the thesis. The result of this process will show an overview of the development process of Vietnam in the study period. - Collect data of indicators in the period of 2001-2010 to experimentally calculate the proposed index of sustainable development. The calculation demonstrates the feasibility of the studyin this thesis. Moreover, the author analyzes the current status of sustainable development of Vietnam in the period of 2001 - 2010 basing on the calculated results. - Presenting some recommendations and solutions in order to well perform statistical work on sustainable development in Vietnam, enabling the best data condition, contributing to accurately assessing the sustainability of the development process of the country. The thesis proposed a basic methodology to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development for Vietnam in every stage of development. On this basis, it is possible to build a system of statistical indicators, and to calculate the aggregate index of sustainable development among provinces over time. Thereby, it is possible to enable comparing and assessing the development levels of each and every province all over the country, making conclusion on the weaknesses to be overcome in order to make the country develop more substainably. This thesis will also serve as the basis for further research in the future.

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