Subjective satisfaction and objective electricity poverty reduction in Vietnam, 2008–2018

The seventh United Nations sustainable development goal (SDG 7) is to “ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy.” In short, “affordable and clean energy” is one of our overarching civilization goals this millennium. Statisticians usually measure progress toward SDG 7 using objective indicators based on electricity distribution and consumption data. We argue that objective indicators are not enough. Human development is an issue of subjective feeling as much as a question of technology or economics. Based on national household surveys, self-reported satisfaction indicators offer a complementary perspective to understand a society’s energy poverty situation more fully.

This paper by Minh Ha Duong and Hoai Son Nguyen contrasts the objective and subjective perspectives used to observe electricity poverty. Then it present the data and methods  before examining Vietnamese households’ electricity consumption from 2008 to 2018 from three points of view : the engineering perspective (grid access and kilowatts per hour consumed), the economic perspective (income and expenditures) and the subjective perspective (satisfaction with electricity consumption).

The findings highlight how much the subjective indicator complements objective engineering or economic indicators, the results and policy implications and compare them with other member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), in section 8. 

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