CSEAS Colloquium: GREENING ISAAN Elusive dream or looming nightmare? | 京都大学 東南アジア地域研究研究所


CSEAS Colloquium: GREENING ISAAN Elusive dream or looming nightmare?

Title: GREENING ISAAN Elusive dream or looming nightmare?
Speaker: MOLLE, François Pierre Marie

Time: 13:30-14:30
Place: Medium-sized Meeting Room 3F Inamori Building
Date: Thursday 26 March 2020

The northeast of Thailand (Isaan) is known as the driest and
poorest part of the country. Poor soils and limited water
resources have seemingly hindered the expansion of
irrigation and the realization of the ‘hydraulic mission’ that the
Royal Irrigation Department (RID) has so steadfastly
pursued in the country. But the region is bordered by the
Mekong River and this has nurtured the recurring dream of a
megaproject that would divert the waters of the mighty river
to ‘green Isaan’ and transform it into a prosperous region. I
first illustrate, more generally, the process of securitization by
which states frequently try to remove their megaprojects
from public debate and the discursive devices they use. I
then move to recalling 60 years of successive projects to
green Isaan (including the latest reincarnation now under
consideration), describe the political and financial interests at
stake, provide four reasons for dismissing this bad ‘good
idea’, and reflect on why it has not happened yet.

About Speaker:
Senior researcher at the Institut de Recherche pour le
Développement (IRD), France. He has 33 years of experience
working on issues of water management, water governance and
water policies, especially in Brazil, the Middle-East/Northern
Africa and Thailand/Vietnam. He has authored 250 publications,
including 120 journal articles, book chapters, and edited
volumes. François Molle graduated from Ecole Polytechnique,
France, holds a Ph.D from the University of Montpellier, serves
as an editorial board member for several journals, and is
co-editor of Water Alternatives (www.water-alternatives.org).