The democracy-development tension in dam projects: the long hand of the law

D'Souza, Radha (2004) The democracy-development tension in dam projects: the long hand of the law. Political Geography, 23 (6). pp. 701-730. ISSN 0962-6298

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‘Democratic development’ comprises two ideas: the idea of democracy that callsfor devolution of power to communitiesand the idea of development that callsfor conceding power to global institutions public and private. The post-war world has witnessed the simultaneous decentralisation of political power and the centralisation of economic power. Recent movements against large dams draw attention to developmental conflicts that embody this tension but do not theorise the underlying dynamic. Taking the award of the Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal as a point of departure this paper examines the centralisation–decentralization dynamic in water conflicts in the Krishna basin in Southern India. The paper argues that there is a hiatus in our understanding of legal and institutional relationships in the ‘the economic’ and ‘the political’, ‘the national’ and ‘the international’ and ‘the colonial’ and the ‘post-colonial’ in relation to problems of river basin development. It challenges some conceptual underpinningsof the development paradigm.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Democratic development, Dams, Law and society, Development planning, Krishna water dispute, Federalism
Subjects: University of Westminster > Westminster Law School
Depositing User: Miss Nina Watts
Date Deposited: 23 May 2007
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2009 11:25

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