[Belonging・Position] Southeast Asian Studies Group II, Area Studies Center ・Director
[Research Field] Vietnamese studies, development studies, industrial development, economics of transition
[email] Mai_Fujita E-mail
Profile Information (Research history, education, papers & publications)
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Previous research

My research has covered a wide range of themes on the Vietnamese economy. After joining the Institute of Developing Economies in 1996, I started to research Vietnam, with a particular focus on external economic relations. Over time, my interests shifted to the domestic economy and political economy with respect to industries, businesses, and institutions. My early work culminated in the edited book The Transformation of Vietnamese Industry during the Period of Transition (IDE, 2006), which illuminated the processes of market-driven industrial development in the context of under-developed institutions. Subsequently, I engaged in fieldwork-based analysis of the Vietnamese motorcycle industry, which turned out to be one of the early works that highlighted the dynamics of industrial development the targeting burgeoning multi-layered developing country markets as well as the scope of active strategies by suppliers in developing countries. My recent work also covers political economic themes, including industrial policies, state-owned enterprise reform, and state−business relationships.

Current research projects

My current projects can be grouped into two broad areas. One examines the developmental direction of the Vietnamese economy in general and its corporate sector in particular. In view of new developments such as the progress of state-owned enterprise reform, the rise of large private enterprises, and the growth of new digital startups, I am pursuing a number of projects to examine policy developments, ownership structure, and the profiles of corporate leaders. My overall aim is to shed light on the characteristics of the corporate sector as well as state–business relationships in Vietnam from a comparative perspective.
The other group of project examines industry, with a particular focus on the strategy of suppliers in global value chains as well as the impact of US–China trade tensions on the Vietnamese economy. My work in this area aims to elucidate general implications of the Vietnamese experience for development in latecomer developing countries, especially those aspiring to develop through integration with the global economy.