Adam Fforde CV July 2016

Curriculum vitae: Dr. Adam J. FFORDE MA (Oxon), MSc (Lond.), PhD (Cantab.)




Cambridge University: Ph.D. Economics 1982; (1978-79 Hanoi University, Vietnam) Dissertation title: Problems of Agricultural Development in North Vietnam.

Birkbeck College, London University: M.Sc. Economics, 1977, Optional paper in Development Economics.

Oxford University: B.A. Engineering Science & Economics, 1973 (M.A. 1976)




Professorial Fellow, Victorian Institute for Strategic Economic Studies, Victoria University – since 2010, ongoing, part-time salary

Teaching/Supervision: sessional lecturer, various subjects and disciplines (see below). Two PhD students currently supervised.


  1. Studies of the contemporary emergence of a Vietnamese capitalism (‘Blue Dragon? – Vietnamese capitalism – a perspective), and
  2. A textbook, edited, on Vietnamese Politics



2011: Professor of International Development, School of Social Sciences, Latrobe University


2005: Professorial Fellow (Honorary Position): School of International Development, Melbourne University Private: Worked on further development of Masters project to support students from developing and transitional countries preparing to move to senior positions – the Masters in Comparative Governance.


Dec 1999-Dec 2001: Senior Fellow (salaried contract – Assoc. Prof. equivalent), Southeast Asian Studies Programme, National University of Singapore


Comments from Assoc Prof Victor Savage:   “Dr. Fforde is not the typical University researcher who only pontificates on theories and concepts. Dealing with the Southeast Asian region and specifically Vietnam, he provides a hands-on, in-depth analysis of the grass-roots …”


1993 – 1999: Visiting Fellow, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, Australian National University (1993-96 Dept of Economics; 1997-99 Dept. of Political and Social Change). ARC Large Research Grant JCI 1994-97


1991: Visiting Scholar, Stockholm School of Economics.


1990: Visiting Scholar, National Centre for Development Studies, Australian National University, Canberra. Working on Vietnamese State Industrial Reform 1979-89


1983 – 1987: ESRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Birkbeck College, London University. Study entitled Vietnamese Industrial Organisation.


1985 – 1986: Visiting Fellow, National Economics University, Hanoi.




As of 21st August 2016, Harzing’s Publish or Perish reported me as having 1,986 citations. I am probably the most widely cited scholar working on contemporary Vietnam.




Academically, I have published / or have forthcoming five sole-authored books, three co-authored books (one translated into Vietnamese and then published in Vietnam) where I have been the major contributor and one edited collection – for current work see above.




  1. Reinventing development – the sceptical change agent, forthcoming Palgrave 2016.
  2. Understanding development economics: its challenge to development studies, 2013, London: Routledge
  3. Coping with facts – a skeptic’s guide to the problem of development, 2009, Bloomfield, CT: Kumarian
  4. Vietnamese State Industry and the Political Economy of Commercial Renaissance: Dragon’s tooth or curate’s egg? 2007 Oxford: Chandos
  5. The Agrarian Question in North Vietnam 1974-79: a study of cooperator resistance to State policy, 1989, New York: M.E.Sharpe ISBN: 0873324862


Joint author


  1. Tu ke hoach den thi truong: su chuyen bien kinh te tai Viet Nam, 1997, with Stefan de Vylder, Hanoi: Nha xuat ban Chinh tri quoc gia (translation of From Plan to Market…). (No ISBN #) – a translation of # 2.
  2. From Plan to Market: The Economic Transition in Vietnam, with Stefan de Vylder, Boulder CO: Westview, 1996. ASIN: 0813326834 I was responsible for about 70% of the work, including all relations with the publisher and copy-editing
  3. Vietnam – an economy in transition, 1988, with Stefan de Vylder, Stockholm: SIDA (ISBN n/a). I was responsible for about 70% of the work
  4. The Limits of National Liberation – problems of economic management in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, with a Statistical Appendix (with the late Mrs S.H.Paine), 1987, London: Croom-Helm. ISBN: 0709910363 I was responsible for about 90% of the work, including all relations with the publisher and copy-editing; it was published after the death of my co-author




  1. Doi Moi – Ten years after the 1986 Party Congress, 1997, Ed. Adam Fforde, Political and Social Change Monograph 24, Canberra: Australian National University. ISBN 0 7315 2674.




Understanding development economics – its challenge to development studies, London: Routledge


Review by Bill Lucarelli, Journal of Contemporary Asia, 2014 DOI10.1080/00472336.2014.961323: –


“Fforde’s comprehensive excursion into the philosophical and methodological controversies that have informed theories of development is impressive Understanding Development Economics is a valuable contribution to some of the perennial controversies that continue to inform its practitioners”


Coping with facts – a skeptic’s guide to the problem of development, Bloomfield, CT: Kumarian Press


Endorsed by Robert Wade, professor of political economy, London School of Economics and winner of Leontief Prize in Economics, 2008: –


“You think that outward-oriented policies produce better results than import-substitution policies, or that beneficiaries’ participation in project design makes for better project performance? Think again. Adam Fforde’s book unpacks these and other familiar development prescriptions to reveal the implicit assumptions about agency, intentionality, and causality behind the whole development “industry”. Drawing on sources from World Bank research reports, to Japanese and Vietnamese economists, to Marx and Cardinal Newman, and on to philosophers of science, the book provides a highly original rethinking of what is being said and done in the name of “development”.


Comments from Dan Duffy, Editor, Viet Nam Literature Project:-


“Coping with Facts  … by Adam Fforde is a book of interest beyond its field of development studies, to a wide range of students of Viet Nam… The philosophy, about what helpful role rationality can play when intentions do not predict outcomes, is of great interest…” 


Review by – Roger Chao,  Agric Hum Values 24 Dec 2010 DOI 10.1007/s10460-010-9302-x


“Fforde’s concluding argument is that the gross misconception that picking the right policy is the key to development needs to be overturned, since development is not a ‘‘predictable process with knowable solutions.’’ The aim  of his book is thus to present ‘‘coping strategies’’ for the reader to use, to help them make sense of this jumbled mess concerning developmental theory, case studies, policies, and proposed solutions to the problem of development.


Overall Fforde’s book is a refreshing read, tearing down the traditional assumptions of developmental theory, providing a novel approach to an age old problem. This book stands in stark contrast to other books in the development field due to its conceiving of development not as a standard problem with a knowable solution. For anyone disenchanted with current development thinking, or for students studying developmental theory, this interesting book breaks away from the orthodox conceptions of development that we so often hear. Thus I recommend this book either as an undergraduate text to be read alongside other more traditional texts, or as a graduate text focusing on its criticism of contemporary development thinking. Overall Fforde should be applauded for his writing of a book that so goes against the grain; he draws out crucial implications for development thinking, that all too often are ignored or rejected as nonacademic.”


Vietnamese State Industry and the Political Economy of Commercial Renaissance: Dragon’s tooth or curate’s egg? Oxford: Chandos 2007.


Endorsed by – Edmund J. Malesky, Ph.D.  Assistant Professor, Graduate School of International Relations and Pacific Studies, University of California, San Diego & Harvard Academy Fellow, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University: –


“Adam Fforde’s new book Vietnamese State Industry and the Political Economy of Commercial Renaissance is an essential read for anyone interested in the present state of Vietnam’s economy.  The book’s in depth exploration of the changing interests, incentives, and political resources of state owned enterprises (SOEs) over the past three decades provides a clear framework for understanding how Vietnamese economic policy has evolved and the challenges for reform that lay ahead.  Its careful, historical documentation of how SOEs initially motivated major economic reform, but now serve as hindrance will also be useful to scholars interested more generally in partial reform traps in economic development. I consider this book to be one of the core pieces in my course on Political Economy of Southeast Asia.”


Doi Moi – Ten years after the 1986 Party Congress, Ed. Adam Fforde, Political and Social Change Monograph 24, Canberra: Australian National University, 1997.


Pacific Affairs Fall 1998, pp: 441-442, Robert L. Curry, Jr.: “… a first-rate, tremendously interesting book. It contains so many useful points that covering more than a critical few of them is an impossible task. However, this brief review hopefully will encourage potential readers to consult Fforde’s superb volume”.


From Plan to Market: The Economic Transition in Vietnam, with Stefan de Vylder, Boulder CO: Westview, 1996.


Journal of Economic Literature Sept 2000, pp: 683-684, Trien T. Nguyen: “The book is thought-provoking! Although the scope is Vietnam-specific, there are far-reaching implications for reforms of transition economies in general. The authors offer an alternative “bottom-up” view … Although the Vietnamese transition is still in process and more work remains to be done in this area of research, this book makes a valuable pioneering contribution to the specialized field of Vietnamese studies as well as to the broader area of development economies.”


Asian Pacific Economic Literature 1998, David Elliot: “From Plan to Market is a superb exposition and analysis of Vietnam’s transition …[with] some shrewd and informed speculation on the politics underlying the changes. … This work has admirably described and analysed the economic transformation of the past two decades in Vietnam, and is an indispensable work for anyone wishing to understand contemporary Vietnam.”


Journal of Asian Studies Nov 1997, pp: 1160-1162, Gary Larsen: “This book is one of the first, and certainly most complete, attempts to chronicle the transition in Vietnam from a planned to a market economy. However, it also reaches beyond mere description of an economic transformation and attempts to develop a framework or model for reform in general, identifying its internal logic …”


Development and Change Jan 1997, pp: 190-191, George Irvin: “… this is a very good book indeed, as accessible for the generalist as it is for the specialist.”


The Agrarian Question in North Vietnam 1974-79: a study of cooperator resistance to State policy, New York: M.E.Sharpe, 1989.


Journal of Economic Literature May 1991 pp.124-126, Frederic L. Pryor: “Fforde’s book … provides an extremely useful analysis of the internal operations of the collective farms … [it] provides a wealth of detail of the internal operations of such farms … and is a useful addition to the literature”.


Journal of Asian Studies Nov 1990 pp.992-993, William J. Duiker: “… as Adam Fforde shows us in this groundbreaking study, outward appearances can be deceiving, for under the surface peasant resistance to official policy has been undermining the system from the beginning. [He] has provided readers with an inside look at the system and much food for thought …”


The Limits of National Liberation – problems of economic management in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, with a Statistical Appendix (with the late Mrs S.H.Paine), London: Croom-Helm 1987.


International Affairs, Spring 1988 p: 316, John Main: “…this book is … very welcome. It will be of value to those with an interest in Vietnamese communism and also, for comparative purposes … and … represents in itself a substantial contribution to Vietnamese studies…”

JOURNAL ARTICLES: (2010 ERA review ranking in {})


I have 30 academic articles in refereed journals, of which twelve have been in ‘A’ and six in ‘B’ ranked journals.


  1. ‘Confirmation Bias: Methodological Causes and a Palliative Response’, 2016, Quantity and Quality, DOI 10.1007/s11135-016-0389-z {B}
  2. ‘Vietnam: economic strategy and economic reality’, 2016, Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs, 35, 2, 3–30 {no rank)
  3. ‘What might international development assistance be able to tell us about contemporary ‘policy government’ in developed countries?, 2015, Administration and Society doi:10.1177/0095399715583891{A}
  4. ‘Cambodia – donor playground? Defeat and doctrinal dysfunction in a hoped-for client state,’ with Katrin Seidel, 2015, South East Asian Research 23 1 79-99 {A}
  5. ‘Post Cold War Vietnam: stay low, learn, adapt and try to have fun – but what about the Party?’, 2013, Contemporary Politics Vol 19 14 379-398 {B}
  6. ‘The politics of civil society organisation in Cambodia and Vietnam, European Journal of East Asian Studies, 1, June 35-53 {A}
  7. ‘Vietnam in 2013 – the end of the party’, Asian Survey, Vol. 53, Number 1, 2013 pp. 101–108 {A}
  8. ‘Vietnam in 2011: questions of domestic sovereignty’, Asian Survey, Vol 52 # 1 2012 pp. 176-185 {A}
  9. ‘Contemporary Vietnam: political opportunities, conservative formal politics and patterns of radical change’, Asian Politics and Policy, 2011 Vol 3 No 2, 165-184 {no rank}
  10. ‘Policy recommendations as spurious predictions: toward a theory of economists’ ignorance’, Critical Review, 2011, vol. 23, nos. 1-2, 105-115. {B}
  11. ‘Vietnam: Water Policy Dynamics under a Post-Cold War Communism’, Water Alternatives 3(3): 552-574 2010 {no rank}
  12. ‘Responses to the policy science problem: reflections on the politics of development’, Development in Practice, 20: 2 2010, 188-204 {C}
  13. ‘Re-thinking the analysis of conservative systemic transitions: the Vietnam Case Study’, Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics, 2010 26: 1, 126 -146 {C}
  14. ‘Luck, Policy or Something Else Entirely? Vietnam’s Economic Performance in 2009 and Prospects for 2010’, Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs 28 4/2009: 71-94 {no rank}
  15. ‘Vietnam on the road of great changes: A tortuous path from communism to capitalism – A scholarly interview of Adam Fforde by Krzysztof Gawlikowski’,  (in Polish), Azja-Pacyfik: spoleczenstwo – polityka-gospodarka (Asia-Pacific; Society – politics – Economy, (Warsaw School of Social Sciences and  Humanities), vol. 12/2009 191-217
  16. ‘Historical origins of Vietnam’s Successful Post-war Economic Liberalisation’, Asian Survey, 2009 Vol. XLIX, No. 3, May/June 2009, pp. 484-584 {A}
  17. ‘Policy ethnography and conservative transition from plan to market – the construction of policy rationalities and the ‘intellectual limitations of leading comrades’’, International Journal of Social Economics Vol 36 No 7 2009 pp. 659-678 {B}
  18. ‘Vietnam’s Informal Farmers’ Groups: narratives and policy implications’, Suedostasien aktuell – Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs, no. 1/2008 pp.3-36 {no rank}
  19. ‘Spice is nice. Australia and Asia – changing attitudes, changing practices. A paper for Poland’, with Catherine Earl, Azja-Pacyfik, spoleczenstwo-polityka-gospodarka (Asia-Pacifik: society-politics-economy), (Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities) vol. 8/2005.
  20. ‘Persuasion: Reflections on Economics, Data and the ‘Homogeneity Assumption’, Journal of Economic Methodology, 12:1, 63-91, March 2005. {B}
  21. ‘Vietnam in 2004: popular authority seeking power’, Asian Survey 45:1 January/February 2005 146-152 {A}
  22. ‘Vietnam in 2003: the road to un-governability?’ Asian Survey 44:1 January/February 2004 121-129 {A}
  23. ‘Light within the ASEAN gloom? The Vietnamese economy since the first Asian Economic Crisis (1997) and in the light of the 2001 downturn’ Southeast Asian Affairs 2002 pp.357-77 {A}
  24. ‘Resourcing conservative transition in Vietnam: rent-switching and resource appropriation’ Post-Communist Economies Vol 14 No 2 June 2002 pp.203-226. {B}
  25. ‘The origins of the market economy in Vietnam: A comment and some questions on the reform of domestic trade’ with Melanie Beresford, Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics Vol 13 No 4 Dec 1997 pp.99-128 {C}
  26. ‘Vietnamese commerce: the ‘Tiger on a Bicycle’ syndrome’ Columbia Journal of World Business Vol 28 Issue 4 Winter 1993 pp.48-55 {no rank}
  27. ‘Socio-economic differentiation in a mature collectivised agriculture – North Vietnamese agricultural producer cooperatives in the mid 1970’s’ Sociologia Ruralis October 1987 Vol 27 # 2-3 pp. 197-215 {A}
  28. ‘The unimplementability of policy and the notion of law in Vietnamese Communist thought’ Southeast Asian Journal of Social Science Vol 14 no. 1 1986 pp.60-70 (Now: Asian Journal of Social Science {A}
  29. ‘In Response to Jane Werner’s Socialist Development: The Political Economy of Agrarian Reform in Vietnam’ Bulletin of Concerned Asian Scholars Vol 17 No.1: January-March 1985 pp. 72-74. (now Critical Asian Studies {A})
  30. ‘Law and socialist agricultural development in Vietnam: the Statute for Agricultural Producer Cooperatives’ Review of Socialist Law 10, 1984. (now: Review of Central and East European Law {C})




  1. ‘Vietnam’, in Ed. Ha-Joon Chang, Public policy and international Development, 2012, Routledge ISS Studies in Rural Livelihoods.
  2. ‘Farmers’ organisations in Vietnam – rural members in an emerging civil society?’, in Ed. Heinrich Boell Foundation, Towards good society: civil society actors, the state and the business class in Southeast Asia – facilitators of or impediments to a strong, democratic and fair society?, Berlin: Heinrich Boell Stiftung, 2005, 111-119.
  3. ‘Civil society, the state and the business sector – protagonists of a democratisation process?’, in Ed. Heinrich Boell Foundation, Towards good society: civil society actors, the state and the business class in Southeast Asia – facilitators of or impediments to a strong, democratic and fair society ? Berlin: Heinrich Boell Stiftung, 2005, pp.173-192.
  4. ‘SOEs, Law and a Decade of Market-Oriented Socialist Development in Vietnam’, 2005 in Ed P. Nicholson and J. Gillespie Asian Socialism and Legal Change: The Dynamics of Vietnamese and Chinese Reform Canberra: Asia Pacific Press 241-270.
  5. ‘Vietnam: What Needs to Be Done?’, In J. Rolfe (Ed.), The Asia-Pacific: A Region in Transition (pp. 285-299): Honolulu: Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies 2004.
  6. ‘Vietnam – Culture and Economy: Dyed-in-the-Wool Tigers?’ in Ed Mandy Thomas and Lisa Drummond Consuming Urban Culture in Contemporary Vietnam London: Routledge 2003 35-59
  7. ‘In Search of the Actual Obstacles to Growth of Vietnamese Small and Medium Enterprises’, with Le Cong Luyen Viet, 2002 in Eds Charles Harvie and Boon Chye Lee, Sustaining SME Innovation, Competitiveness and Development in the Global Economy  Wollongong, Australia: Center for SME Research and Development, University of Wollongong.
  8. ‘The Institutions of Transition from Central-planning – the Case of Vietnam’ in Ed Colin Barlow Institutions and Economic Change in Southeast Asia: the Context of Development from the 1960s to the 1990s Cheltenham: Elgar 2000. ISBN: 1858987261
  9. ‘The transition from plan to market: China and Vietnam compared’ pp 43-72 in Ed. Ben Kerkvliet et al Transforming Asian Socialism: China and Vietnam Compared, Canberra: Allen and Unwin 1999. ISBN: 0847698475
  10. ‘The Vietnamese economy in 1996 – events and trends – the limits of Doi Moi?’ in Ed Adam Fforde Doi Moi – Ten years after the 1986 Party Congress Political and Social Change Monograph 24 Canberra: Australian National University 1997. ISBN 0 7315 2674.
  11. ‘Part 3 – Vietnam’, with Stefan de Vylder, in Ed. Naved Hamid and Pradumna B. Rana, From Centrally Planned to Market Economies: The Asian Approach, Vol 3, Oxford: ADB/Oxford University Press, 1996. ISBN: 0195866045
  12. ‘The Economy and the Countryside’ with Steve Seneque in Vietnam’s Rural Transformation Eds Benjamin Kerkvliet and Doug Porter Boulder CO: Westview Press/ISEAS 1995. ASIN: 081338950X
  13. Comment on Melanie Beresford ‘Vietnamese Marxism and the Transition to a Market Economy in Ed Peter Groenewegen and Bruce MacFarlane Socialist thought in the post Cold War era Sydney: Centre of the study of the History of Economic Thought University of Sydney 1995.
  14. ‘The political economy of ‘reform’ in Vietnam – some reflections’ in Ed B. Ljunggren The Challenge of Reform in Indochina Cambridge MA: Harvard U.P. 1993. 293-326.
  15. ‘Some reflections on Vietnam’s experience with the successful commercialisation of a neo-Stalinist economic system, 1979- 89’ in Ed. Brian Brogan et al Doi moi Canberra: ANU 1991.
  16. ‘The Socialist Republic of Vietnam in the twelve months since mid 1988 – major policy changes and socio-economic developments’ in Ed Per Ronnas and Orjan Sjoberg Doi moi – Economic Reforms and Development Policies in Vietnam Stockholm: SIDA 1990.
  17. ‘Vietnamese agriculture – changing property rights in a mature collectivised agriculture’ in Ed Karl-Eugene Wadekin Communist agriculture: Farming in the Far East and Cuba’ London: Routledge 1989.
  18. ‘Collectivisation of wet-rice cultivation – some reflections on Vietnamese experience’ in Ed J.C.Brada and K.-E.Wadekin Organisational responses to failing performance: socialist agriculture in crisis Boulder CO: Westview 1987.
  19. ‘Economic aspects of Soviet-Vietnamese relations: their role and importance’ in Ed Robert Cassen Soviet interests in the Third World London: Sage 1985. 192-219




  1. The historical background to Vietnam’s contemporary state enterprise sector: the policy story SEARC Hong Kong Working Paper Series No. 159 October 2014
  2. ‘Post Cold War Vietnam: Stay Low, Learn, Adapt And Try To Have Fun – But What About The Party?’  Working Paper Series No. 122 January 2012
  3. ‘State owned enterprises, law and a decade of market-oriented socialist development in Vietnam’ Working Paper Series # 70 September 2004 SEARC City University of Hong Kong.
  4. ‘Vietnamese State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) – “Real Property”, Commercial Performance and Political Economy’ Working Paper Series # 69 August 2004 SEARC City University of Hong Kong.
  5. ‘Regional Development in Vietnam: Local Dynamics, Market Forces and State Policies’ with Hy Van Luong, Eastern Asia Policy Papers 13 JCPAS University of Toronto-York University 1996.
  6. ‘Industrial development in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam) and the historical background to developments during the post reunification period’ Disc. Paper 87/2 Dept. of Economics Birkbeck College London 1987.
  7. ‘Reflections on the Vietnamese Socialist Revolution: – the problem of plan non-implementability and the difficulty involved in realising Socialist Construction in a Low-income Socialist Developing Country’ Disc. Paper 168 Dept. of Economics Birkbeck College London 1985
  8. ‘The historical background to agricultural collectivisation in North Vietnam’ (1981, mimeo and rev.’d 1983) Disc. Paper 148 Dept. of Economics Birkbeck College London 1984.
  9. ‘Macroeconomic adjustment and structural change in a low-income Socialist developing country – an analytical model’ Disc. Paper 163 Dept. of Economics Birkbeck College London 1984.

OTHER ACADEMIC WORK (seminar and conference papers)



  1. What social innovators and entrepreneurs often learn, and why the Wehrmacht and the IDF would not be surprised Talk to colloquium, Social innovation, RMIT 2014
  2. Vietnam as an irritant to mainstream dogmas – reflections, Dept Political Science, Stockholm University, 2013
  3. Cassandra lives! “Writing the economic history of Vietnam: are diverse views required by the nature of the subject matter?”, IAS Leiden 2013
  4. ‘Is Vietnam a ‘land without a King’? Understanding politics and governance issues in Vietnam since de-Stalinisation and the emergence of a market economy’, Seminar, Asia Institute, University of Melbourne 2013
  5. From ‘constructing socialism’ to ‘doing development’: growth and its meanings in contemporary Vietnam, Paper for Conference: 5th International ADI Conference, Growth – critical perspectives from Asia, Asian Dynamics Initiative, University of Copenhagen, 13-14 June 2013.
  6. “Coping with ‘ignorance beyond uncertainty’ in development practice: why we need to know how, why we usually don’t bother, and some practical options for what to do in practice”, talk, James Curtin University, Townsville.
  7. “Anh Khanh lam viec tai day”(“Khanh works here”) – reflections on labour markets and the Vietnamese, Duisberg 2011
  8. State, civil society and politics: Vietnam – a land without a king?, Invited paper – ‘Civil Society in Vietnam and Cambodia: Concepts and Discourses – Diversity in Practice’, workshop, ZEF, Bonn Jan 2012
  9. Vietnam: a discussion of poverty, its measurement and likely causes, with special reference to agriculture, Paper for workshop, CSES May 2011
  10. ‘Ket hop’; Joint organiser of CSES/VASA workshop, Hanoi, November 2011
  11. Post Cold War Vietnam: stay low, learn, adapt and try to have fun – but what about the Party? Invited paper, presented at ‘KomPost’ International Conference ‘Twenty Years after the Collapse of the Soviet Union Change, Continuity and New Challenges’, Berlin Dec. 2011.
  12. When the informal is never entirely informal, and the formal is never entirely formal – reflections on public policy with reference to Vietnam and in international perspective, INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE THE INFORMAL SECTOR AND INFORMAL EMPLOYMENT: Statistical Measurement, Economic Implications and Public Policies, Hanoi May, 6-7, 2010
  13. Donor Playground Cambodia? What a look at aid and development in Cambodia confirms and what it may imply, with Katrin Seidel, Conference, Heinrich Boell Stiftung, Nov 2010
  14. Extension and service delivery organisations for small farmers in rural mountain regions of north Vietnam, Paper delivered at Larenstein workshop, north Vietnam, October 2003.
  15. SOEs, Law and a Decade of Market-Oriented Socialist Development in Vietnam, Paper for Conference: Law and Governance: Socialist Transforming Vietnam. The Asian Law Centre and the School of Law at Deakin University, at the Melbourne Law School from 12-13 June 2003.
  16. Vietnamese Farmers’ Organisations, with Nguyen Dinh Huan, CERUDEV/NISTPASS, Hanoi, AARES Conference, Adelaide, 2001.
  17. The transition from plan to market – a model of spontaneous liberalisation and endogenous change, mimeo, 2001.
  18. Vulnerable Groups in Vietnam: state and societal responses in a post-transition society, Conference Paper, NUS/ASEAN Universities Conference, 2001.
  19. Vietnam and the outlook for long-term economic expansion, SAIS/Johns Hopkins conference on Vietnam, Nov 2000.
  20. Vietnam’s development and the problem of development doctrine, seminar, SEASP, NUS, 2000.
  21. The current situation in Vietnam, PARC/Stanford, Nov 2000.
  22. The Vietnamese people and the shift to a market economy: perspectives, seminar paper, Griffiths University and ANU, 1999.
  23. Vietnam – Culture and Economy: Dyed-in-the-Wool Tigers?, Paper at 1999 Vietnam Update Conference, Australian National University, Canberra.
  24. Strategic Issues in Vietnamese Development Policy: State Owned Enterprises (SOEs), Agricultural Cooperatives and Public Administration Reform (PAR), Seminar Paper – Dept of Political and Social Change, RSPAS, ANU 1998; also Monash Centre for SEA Studies, 1998.
  25. ‘Economic Growth and Institutional Development in Contemporary Vietnam’, AVRP Monograph Series # 1: Vietnam’s Transition to a Market Economy – An Introduction to Theoretical and Empirical Issues; Macquarie/ANU 1997, Ed Adam Fforde
  26. Vietnam – a transitional society? – Comparisons with China, Paper to Asian Studies Association of Australia Annual Conference – ‘Communication with/in Asia’, Melbourne 1996.
  27. Pork, Periodisation and Primitive Accumulation: Reform Sequencing – Myths and Realities in Vietnam and China, Workshop ‘Transforming Asian Socialism’, ANU Canberra 1995.
  28. Public goods, the State, Civil Society and Development Assistance in Vietnam: Opportunities and Prospects, with Porter, Doug, Paper presented to ‘Doi Moi, the State and Civil Society: Vietnam Update 1994 Conference, Canberra 10-11 November 1994.
  29. Vietnam: A tiger on a bicycle, Vietnam Investment Review 16/08/93
  30. The Institutions of Transition from Central-planning – the Case of Vietnam, Canberra, December 1st 1992, Paper given at ANU Canberra, December 1992, and AEA Annual Conference, Anaheim, California January 1993.






My teaching has covered, inter alia, the politics of development, Asian economies, development economics, comparative development policy, comparative political economy, Indochina and quantitative methods. This broad range is supported by my experience as a practitioner.


Masters of International Development, Latrobe University, II 2011 – Masters’ subject – Research and Writing in Development


Dept of Politics, Monash University, II 2007 – temporary Senior Lecturer, subjects: Politics of Development (u/g) and Foreign Aid and World Development (p/g).  Also Urbanisation and Regionalisation in the Asia-Pacific Rims, subject in the M.IDEA, Monash.


Centre for Public Policy, Department of Political Science, University of Melbourne, II 2003 and I 2004 – Masters course (various degrees including Public Policy and Development Studies), Subject: Comparative Development Policy (with reference to SEA)


Dept of Economics, University of Melbourne:


  • Masters level – I 2004, II 2005, II 2006, II 2007 and II 2008, Subjects: Asian Economies; Quantitative Methods for Business. Honours Economics, Subject: Development Economics (also attended by non-economists and Masters level students)


  • Undergraduate – II 2014. Subject: Globalisation and the World Economy


Dept of Political Science, La Trobe, II 2004, I 2005, I 2006 to I 2011 Lecture to Development Studies students on ‘Development projects


Dept of Business and Economics, Monash, II 2005 – Masters Course, Subject: The contemporary world


Southeast Asian Studies Programme, National University of Singapore. 2000-2001


Courses (developed and/or presented)

Masters in SE Asian Studies:

Comparative Development Policy – Problems and Prospects;

Comparative Political Economy of Southeast Asia.

(‘Indochina’) Country Study: Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam


The Southeast Asian Landscape: History, Politics, Culture, and Society (1st Yr.)

                                       Comparative Political Economy of Southeast Asia (3rd Yr.)

                                       Land, Labour and Capital in SEA (Honours Yr.)

                                       Theory and Practice (Honours Yr.)


Supervision of Honours and Masters Theses (see below)


Faculty of Asian Studies, Australian National University, 1993-1996

Module on Contemporary Economics and Politics in Vietnam (with Prof Ben Kerkvliet) 1996;

Lectures on Contemporary Vietnamese Economic History and the Transition from Central Planning 1993.


Australian Defence College, 1990s

               Various classes and seminars


Prices and Markets Institute, Hanoi, 1990

Various localities, lectures on ‘Equity companies and Capital markets’ (in Vietnamese).


Department of Economics, Cambridge University, 1979-1981

Classes in Economic Development, International Economics, Cost-benefit Analysis and Economic Statistics.


Dept. of Foreign Languages, English Section, Hanoi University, 1979

Classes in English Language and Comprehension.






Nguyen Thi Xuan Huong, 2014 to date, Social capital and export performance amongst Vietnamese SOEs, VISES. VU

Sompasong Phommasane, 2013 to date, Privatisation and savings-investment relationships in Lao PDR, VISES, VU

Valerie Sock Koong Teo, 2005 to date (member of Dissertation Committee), Legitimacy of authoritarian regimes in liberalizing economies: FDI, SMEs and attitudes towards government in Singapore, Vietnam and China. Southern Illinois University



Minna Hakkaraienen, 2009-2014, BETWEEN IDEAS OF DEMOCRACY AND GENDERED LOCAL PRACTICES IN VIETNAM A Bakhtinian reading of development aid practice, Institute of Development Studies, University of Helsinki

Philip Martin, 2005 to 2013 (co-supervisor), Renovating Masculinity: Urban Men’s Experiences and Emergent Masculinity Models in Đổi Mới Vietnam, University of Melbourne.

Andrew Hardy, 1999 (advisor), A History of Migration to Upland Areas in Twentieth Century Vietnam, ANU.


MA (by thesis)

Dang Dinh Trung 2001, The Peasant economy in Transition: A Case Study of the Ede ethnic minority in Daklak, Vietnam, NUS.

Tran thi Phi Phuong 2001, Reconciling work commitment and family life among married professional women in Ho Chi Minh City, NUS.


BA Honours Theses

Ingrid Landau, 2004, Re-Organising Labour: Workers, Trade Unions and the Party-State in Transitional Vietnam, University of Melbourne.

Aileen Ang Chui Ling, 2001, Women’s access to housing and land rights in rural Vietnam, NUS.

Lim Siew Lee, 2001, Authority and decision-making in rural Vietnamese families, NUS.

Wendy Low, 2000, Cyclo drivers, NUS


MA Module Theses

Sarah Bird, 2005, Tracking dogma: The World Bank’s World Development Reports and the Washington Consensus, University of Melbourne.

Luenne Choa, 2004, Critical discourse analysis and Australian foreign policy, University of Melbourne

Valerie Teo, 2001, The Fourth Indochinese war: Development Dominoes and the Containment of Capitalism, NUS.

Ng Suk Nyan, 2001, Water Management: Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Darul Ehsan ,NUS

Jessica Ludwig, 2001, The idea of working and ageing in Singapore – An analysis, NUS

Clara Netina Tan Chiew Pheng, 2000, Feminist consciousness in Singapore, NUS

Gary Chan, 2000, Law, development and the state in Vietnam, NUS

Erik Ford, 2001, Pirated software in Singapore, NUS



Reviewer for various academic journals and publishers: Asian-Pacific Economic Literature; Asian Survey; Cornell University Press; Development and Change; Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore; Journal of Asian Business; Journal of Asian Studies; Journal of Comparative Economics; Journal of Economic History; Journal of Economic Literature; Journal of Tropical Geography; Southeast Asia Publications, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Northern Illinois; The Pacific Review, Journal of International Marketing; Geoforum; Journal of Development Studies; Nordic Institute for Asian Studies; East Asia: an International Quarterly; Asian Politics and Policy; Imperial College press; China: an International Journal; Routledge; Pacific Affairs; International Journal of Asia-Pacific Studies; Journal of Peasant Studies; Journal of Contemporary Asia; Comparative Economic Studies; National Science Foundation; World development; International Journal of Public Administration; Journal of Asian Studies; Journal of Southeast Asian Studies; Water Alternatives; Society and Natural Resources;


Member of editorial boards: Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs (GIGA, Hamburg); Canadian Journal of Development Studies.


Contributor to various TV and radio programmes, including BBC World Service Vietnamese Service broadcasts; the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (‘Connect Asia’)


2004-5 – Developed study group to support researchers working on topics related to Vietnam in Victoria. Meetings and discussions to provide peer support to the near three dozen active researchers in this area working in Victoria


2005 – Organised seminar series: Development in Asian Practice: Vietnam. The seminar series saw presentations by INGO, consultants and individuals active in development work in Vietnam


2001-5 – First at NUS and then at UoM and MUP, initiated and developed a Masters Course proposal: the ‘Masters in Comparative Governance’. Designed for students, mainly from developing or transition countries shifting to leadership positions requiring competence in both a wide range of social science and other relevant disciplines as well as support to develop relevant leadership skills.



1992 to 2012: Chairman – Adam Fforde and Associates Pty Ltd (previously Aduki Pty Ltd). Adam Fforde and Associates p/l is an Australian consultancy company focussing upon Vietnam. Through much of the 1990s I was author and editor of Vietnam: Economic Commentary and Analysis, a review published by the company. Adam Fforde and Associates’ (previously Aduki Pty Ltd) main clients have been aid donors and the work a mixture of contract research and project related activities. The company also provides advice to business clients, who have included: News Corp; Shell; BP.


1989 – 1992: Socio-economic adviser, Sida Development Cooperation Office, Embassy of Sweden, Hanoi. Responsible for a variety of tasks related to the bilateral cooperation program, including socio-economic monitoring, analysis of Vietnamese economic reform and project re-design.


1988 – 1989: Senior Socio-economic Specialist, Forestry and Plantation and Soil Conservation Projects, Bai Bang, Vinh Phu, Vietnam.


1987 – 1988: Consultant, SIDA. Two major studies: Forestry workers in Vietnam – a study of living and working conditions (1987); Vietnam – an economy in transition (1988).


1983 – 1990: Author, Vietnam section, Quarterly Economic Review of Indochina, Economist Intelligence Unit, London.


1982 – 1983: Freelance Economic Consultant. Prepared Research Proposal for Overseas Development Institute, London, The Aid Debate. Rapporteur for Royal Institute of International Affairs Study Group on Soviet Relations with the Third World. Prepared The Outlook for the World Distribution of Income for Henley Centre for Forecasting, London.


1975 – 1976: Freelance Economic Consultant. Work included Research Assistant to David Galloway, The Public Prodigals: the growth of public spending and how to control it, London: Maurice Temple Smith, 1976


1973 – 1975: Economic Analyst, The Henley Centre for Forecasting, London. A variety of applied economic and statistical work, including exchange rate forecasting, analysis of the UK second hand car market, of the import content of tourism and NIA forecasting for Ireland and the UK.



  • Consultant, Sida (Hanoi), 2013, Final Evaluation of Chia se project, Hanoi
  • Consultant, Sida (Hanoi), 2010-2011, Support to development of engagement with voluntary farmers’ groups, Hanoi
  • Team Leader, Sida (Hanoi), 2010, Study of the support to the Government Inspectorate, Vietnam
  • Consultant, Heinrich Boell Foundation (Phnon Penh), 2010, Study of German development strategy – Cambodia Case Study
  • Team Leader, UNDP (Phnom Penh), 2010, Study: The effects of foreign trade upon environmental degradation and human development: rice, fisheries and cassava
  • Team Leader, UNDP (HCMC), 2010-2011, Study: Socialisation of education in HCMC – Overview, Case Studies, Framework and Implementation Strategy.
  • Team leader, UNDP (Hanoi), 2009, Study: Linking intention to Implementation: Understanding the relationship between political and non-political personnel in contemporary Viet Nam
  • Team Leader, Sida (Embassy of Sweden, Hanoi), 2008-09, Analysis of impact of Chia se (Swedish Rural development program in Vietnam).
  • Consultant, FAO, Rome, 2008, Applying historical precedent to new conventional wisdom on public sector roles in agriculture and rural development – Vietnam Case Study
  • Consultant, Sida (Embassy of Sweden, Hanoi), 2007 (Input to strategy development, rural development cooperation).
  • Lead Consultant, OXFAM Group 2007 (Development of intervention modalities for work with Farmers’ Groups), OXFAM UK.
  • Consultant, Embassy of Finland, Hanoi. May-June 2006. Mid-term Review of Fund for Development Cooperation.
  • Advisor, Ministry of Finance, Hanoi (institutional reform), UNDP, Hanoi Vietnam Nov 2004 – June 2005. Analysis of policy analysis systems. Arranged for visit to Victoria and Canberra by team led by Deputy Minister Ta, late 2005.
  • Lead Consultant, OXFAM Group (Farmers’ groups in rural development), OXFAM UK, Vietnam early 2005. Study of intervention methods in rural development.
  • International consultant, Study of the impact of the Enterprise Law on Rural Development, UNDP, Hanoi Vietnam started Nov 2004. Support to survey and analysis.
  • Technical Director, Mekong Delta Poverty Study, AusAID (Oct 2002 – early 2004). Detailed study of poverty in the Mekong Delta (in association with World Vision Australia).
  • Consultant, Review of Vietnamese policy analysis for transition economy, FAO Training Course, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, Yangoon, Myanmar, (May 2004). Presentation of Vietnamese methods of policy analysis and approach to the transition to a market economy.
  • Team Leader, Financial policy capability analysis, Ministry of Finance, Vietnam, UNDP, (March-May 2004). Analysis of policy analysis capacity at the Ministry.
  • Consultant, Feasibility of proposals for assistance to Inspectorate, Ministry of Planning and Investment, DFID, Vietnam (Nov 2003). Analysis of feasibility of proposed support.
  • Lead Consultant, Comments on the Working Regulations of the Vietnamese Government, DANIDA, 2002. Consultancy to support the institutional development of the Office of Government, through analysis and recommendations for changes to the Government’s Working Regulations.
  • Consultant, Review: Country Strategy Paper, DFID, 2002. Member of three person team to evaluate the CSP, which is the guiding strategic document for DFID in Vietnam.
  • Lead Consultant, Vietnamese Farmers’ Organisations Sida Detailed study of rural institutional change, looking at the Party-sponsored new-style cooperatives and the informal farmers’ groups; fieldwork in 3 provinces and workshop of results.
  • Lead Consultant Vietnamese State-Owned Enterprises – their real ownership CIDA Detailed study of real ownership of SOEs – who owns, who controls. Results translated and extensive soundings of Vietnamese opinions taken.
  • Consultant, Evaluation of the FCP and MRDP Projects Sida 2000-2001. Member of team for this important evaluation of a decade of Sida support to forest and upland rural development in N Vietnam.
  • Team Leader, Vietnam Program Assessment AusAID Assessment of the guiding strategic document for AusAID support to Vietnam, with development of methodology to assess contribution of program components to strategic corporate goals.
  • Chairman/Organiser, Vietnam’s External Economic Policies: Assessment and Strategy Implications – Workshop Hanoi CIDA Organised workshop to provide Government of Vietnam with comments on their external policies.
  • Team Leader, Impact of the economic crisis upon agricultural and rural development: Vietnam, AusAID Report.
  • Team Leader, Strategic Evaluation Component: Mid-Term Evaluation, Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDEF), Quang Nam Province, Central Vietnam UNCDF/UNDP 1998-99. Project evaluation.
  • Consultant, From Unconscious to Conscious pragmatism: lessons from experience and recommendations for the future strategic framework of Australian-Vietnamese cooperation AusAID ‘Think piece’ as input to AusAID strategy development.
  • Consultant, Team Leader, Evaluation of Project Impact, Dai Loc UNCDF Project, Quang Nam Province, Central Vietnam UNCDF Project evaluation.
  • Consultant, Evaluation of Provincial PAR Project Proposals, North and Central Vietnam Sida
  • Team Leader, Vulnerable Groups in Rural Vietnam: Situation and Policy Response – analysis of a large sample survey (carried out with Aduki technical assistance), Ministry of Labour, Hanoi SIDA Report writer and leader of TA to large quantitative survey of vulnerable groups in Vietnam, workshop and advice.
  • Consultant, Institutions and markets as factors in Vietnamese medium-term agricultural output performance – an assessment, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural development, Hanoi World Bank Variety of inputs to rural policy: focus upon rural institutions (cooperatives) and important markets: sugar, fertiliser, rice, cashews, coffee.
  • Team Leader, Public Administration Reform in Ho Chi Minh City – A report on the “Vietnamese process”, with suggestions for how to support it, Report for Government Committee on Organisation and Personnel, Hanoi UNDP Detailed study of the local administrative system with proposals for policy development and external support.
  • Team Leader, Vietnam: Support to Rural Development Planning, Policy Department, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Hanoi UNDP Led Vietnamese research teams examining emerging policy problems; important policy advice relating to the reform of fertiliser market regulations.
  • Consultant, Vietnam to 2005 EIU Publication.
  • Consultant, Economic Reforms in Laos Sida Report.
  • Consultant, Socio-economic Context of Upland Development in Vietnam UNDP Report.
  • Team Leader, Assessment of the Income-generating Activities of the Vietnam Red Cross Danish Red Cross and IFRC Report analysing income generating activities by local branches of the Vietnam Red Cross.
  • Team Leader, Poverty in Vietnam Sida Translated and published as Van de ngheo o Viet nam, Nha xuat Ban chinh tri Quoc gia, Hanoi 1996. Report.
  • Consultant, The Vietnamese Budgetary System Sida Detailed examination of the technical aspects of the Vietnamese budgetary system, focusing upon disbursement procedures.
  • Consultant, The Role of Top-Level Research Institutes in Policy Formation Sida Report, based upon fieldwork.
  • Chairman/Organiser, Modern Economics and Vietnam – Roundtable Hanoi Sida and OXFAM (with The Vietnam Educational Trust) 1993. Conference introduce new topics to Vietnamese policy-makers.
  • Country Consultant and co-author, The Socialist Republic of Vietnam, 1991. Report for the Asian Development Bank, Manila.
  • Consultant, Vietnam – an economy in transition Sida Path-breaking report.
  • Consultant, Forestry workers in Vietnam – a study of living and working conditions Sida Report.



Nationalities:         UK, Irish, Australian

Languages:             Vietnamese, French.



Melbourne July 2016


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