Mapping the Social Impacts of ‘Damocles Projects’: The Case Of Thailand's (As Yet Unbuilt) Kaeng Suea Ten Dam

Kirchherr, J., Pomun, T. and Walton, M.J. (2016). Mapping the Social Impacts of 'Damocles Projects': The Case of Thailand's (as yet Unbuilt) Kaeng Suea Ten Dam. Journal of International Development, doi: 10.1002/jid.3246

28 Pages Posted: 21 Apr 2017

See all articles by Julian Kirchherr

Julian Kirchherr

Utrecht University - Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development

Teerapong Pomun

Independent

Matthew Walton

University of Oxford - Saint Antony’s College

Date Written: September 28, 2016

Abstract

Academic research on dams' social impacts traditionally focuses on ex-post resettlement impacts. We explore a specific subset of ex-ante resettlement impacts in this paper: ‘Damocles projects’, whose implementation is still uncertain. Our case study is Thailand's Kaeng Suea Ten Dam whose implementation has been uncertain for 36 years. We find the cultural life of the communities studied has been significantly shaped by the looming construction of the dam. Furthermore, most villagers report extreme anxiety induced by the threat of the project. As a consequence, many have postponed private investments. The government has also withheld public infrastructure investments, further hampering the villages' economic development. Our research highlights the negative impacts induced by projects whose implementation is still uncertain.

Keywords: Thailand; Kaeng Suea Ten Dam; large dams; social impacts; protests

Suggested Citation

Kirchherr, Julian and Pomun, Teerapong and Walton, Matthew, Mapping the Social Impacts of ‘Damocles Projects’: The Case Of Thailand's (As Yet Unbuilt) Kaeng Suea Ten Dam (September 28, 2016). Kirchherr, J., Pomun, T. and Walton, M.J. (2016). Mapping the Social Impacts of 'Damocles Projects': The Case of Thailand's (as yet Unbuilt) Kaeng Suea Ten Dam. Journal of International Development, doi: 10.1002/jid.3246. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2956651

Julian Kirchherr (Contact Author)

Utrecht University - Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development ( email )

Heidelberglann 2
3508 TC Utrecht
Netherlands

Teerapong Pomun

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Matthew Walton

University of Oxford - Saint Antony’s College ( email )

Oxford
United Kingdom

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