Call for Researchers: The Impact of Climate Change on Street Vendors in Cambodia, Laos, & Vietnam

By StreetNet Media
May 14, 2024
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StreetNet is now calling for experienced researchers for an exciting new project focusing on the impact of climate change on street vendors in the Asia region.


StreetNet International (SNI) is currently involved in a five year program with Oxfam in Cambodia, Oxfam in Vietnam, and Oxfam in Laos supported by the Belgian Directorate General for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid (DGD). The cluster program called Improved Social Protection and Labor Rights for Women Workers in ASEAN’s Agri-Food Sector is currently being implemented in Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. The  program seeks to empower workers in the agri-food sector to exercise their rights and have access to adequate labor rights and social protection through the promotion of three pillars of Decent Work: Labor Rights at Work, Social Protection, and Social Dialogue for All. 

The Agri-food sector represents an important share of the informal economy in the ASEAN region. The food system and agri-food sector are considered responsible for a great share of employment mostly in farming activities, processing, packaging, transporting, storing, distributing, and retailing of food products. Women workers, in particular, work in informal, insecure, dangerous and unprotected jobs. They  belong to the poorest sections of the population and are often left behind regarding decent work and social protection. 

Street vendors are among these workers in the informal economy whose contribution to national economies often goes unnoticed despite their numbers and the important role they play in ensuring food security for lower income populations in most Asian countries. As part of extending social protection to street vendors and other workers in the informal economy, there is a need to understand the specific livelihood and lifecycle risks and vulnerabilities that affect them. Climate change is one such issue which poses a great threat to the sector and while there is consensus that social protection systems must be gender transformative and climate responsive, there is little conclusive evidence to describe what the impacts of climate change are on street vendors. Lacking this information weakens the capacity of the sector to push for better labor rights and more comprehensive social protection.

This study then aims to address this knowledge gap by engaging researchers from the three program countries: Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam, in producing qualitative research case studies. These case studies would address the following questions:

  • In what ways do street vendors experience climate change in their everyday lives and work? How, if applicable, do they navigate these challenges?
  • Are there specific ways that climate change impacts women street vendors?
  • Are there existing labor regulations, social protection schemes, or other government programs or policies that tackle these challenges?

In the program countries, SNI works with its affiliate organization, the Independent Democracy of Informal Economy Association (IDEA) in Cambodia. In Laos and Vietnam, SNI cooperates with the national trade unions: Laos Federation of Trade Unions and the Vietnam General Confederation of Labor.  

In keeping with the programs’ approach of being rights based, gender transformative, and influential for change, this research project will employ participatory action research (PAR) methods. The researchers will be working with SNI’s Asia regional organizer to facilitate this process. 

The researchers are expected to work 20 days within June-August 2024


SNI is looking for three researchers from each of the country programs to produce the following:

  • One case study of 15-20 pages (including appendices) written in English with translations of executive summary and recommendations in the respective country languages
  • One presentation of 7-10 slides outlining the case study contents and recommendations to be presented in the country when the case studies are launched and also in an online webinar to be organized by SNI.


Candidates for the positions must possess the following skills and qualifications:

  • A graduate degree in the social sciences (political science, sociology, development studies) or any other degree that includes research methods
  • A proven capacity to do qualitative research work which includes but is not limited to managing and conducting interviews, transcribing, collecting and analyzing data, writing reports, and presenting findings to an audience
  • Proficiency in spoken and written English as well as the capacity to conduct interviews in the respective language spoken in the program country (Khmer, Lao, Vietnamese)
  • Proficiency in the use of MS Office applications
  • Organized, responsive, and self-motivated with a willingness to learn
  • A background in community development or grassroots engagement is an asset but not a requirement

Interested applicants should submit a cover letter, CV, and sample work to with the subject line: “Oxfam Research”. Please submit by 27 May 2024. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for the interview.

Download the PDF of the call for researchers here.

Photo: Mrs. Chhuon Dara (28), a member of StreetNet affiliate IDEA in Cambodia, is originally from Prey Veng province and she has been selling meat at the market for the last 5 years. By Enric Català.

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