Villages, Customary Laws and Community Management of Ethnic Minority Groups in the Central Highlands

Tuyen Mong Thi Nguyen


Vietnam has been fundamentally an agricultural country and consequently, rural areas with farmers play a critical role in its socio-economic development. As villages and communes are foundational social structures of the agricultural society, they have been the focal points in the development process throughout the history, especially during the modernization and industrialization of the country. For ethnic minority groups in the Central Highlands, despite their relative low socio-economic development level, the social relations are community – based, which forms the potential strength of the nation. Socio-economic development and village management have become central tasks set forth by the Party and the national government of Vietnam. The goals are to foster the development of the Central Highland villages while protect them from adversary derivative conditions, creating prerequisite conditions for the region’s integration with the market economy that is being formed and developed. With the development trend, the tools for managing and regulating basic social relations are customary laws and State laws. In this paper, we discuss a traditional form of society which is the village and its customary laws as solutions to developing advanced social relations, enhancing the internal power of the region, creating a driving force for the country.

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