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Vu Hoai Nam Dang

My research focuses on consumer behaviors, Asian consumerism, and social marketing. I have co-authored a book chapter reviewing research evidence in social marketing and conducted two studies on rhino horn consumers in Vietnam, identifying the most common reasons for rhino horn usage and shedding light on a shift from functional to symbolic reasons and from utilitarian and hedonic values. I aim to contribute to better understanding of Asian consumerism, policy making, and the informed design of behavior change strategies.

I have been selected for the University of Copenhagen’s TALENT Doctoral Fellowship Program, which is co-funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 801199. My current projects include using choice experiments and the theory of planned behavior to reveal best options for reducing demand for rhino horn in Vietnam and studying magical thinking associated with rhino horn use.

Current research

Using Choice Experiments and the Theory of Planned Behavior to Model the Determinants of Demand for Rhino Horn in Vietnam

This project aims to build a detailed understanding of the determinants of demand for rhino horn in Vietnam in order to contribute to policy making and the design of optimally targeted consumer behavior modification strategies to most effectively reduce demand. Specific objectives of this research include:

1) Assessing the aspects of Vietnamese culture and consumerism that contribute to high demand for rhino horn;

2) Evaluating the importance of various social-psychological drivers of individual demand for rhino horn in Vietnam;

3) Assessing what combination of changes in aspects that influence demand, such as price and the price of substitutes, sanctions, peer support or pressure, etc. will most effectively reduce demand for rhino horn.

Results of the project will be fed directly into the Government of Vietnam's efforts to develop policies to manage the wildlife trade, transnational organized wildlife crime, public health and traditional medicine. Furthermore, collaborations are established with relevant conservation organizations including Save the Rhino who will provide inputs and expect to use the results to develop effective and efficient behavioral modification campaigns to reduce the demand for rhino horn. The study will furthermore constitute an important academic contribution to the understanding of Asian culture and consumerism in relation to wildlife products.


  • –present
    PhD Fellow, University of Copenhagen