Brooke Wilmsen (Melbourne)
In 2015, the construction of the Three Gorges Dam in China was completed. For more than two decades, the 1.13 million people it displaced have been rebuilding their livelihoods. To assist, the Chinese government used policy and incentives to stimulate the local economy. Whether the resettlers benefited from such initiatives is not yet understood. This paper offers the first longitudinal analysis of the resettlers’ livelihoods. The study follows up with 521 households that participated in a survey in 2003. The initial survey, con- ducted within five years of their displacement, found that despite improvements to infrastructure and housing, incomes generally declined, livelihoods were dismantled, and permanent employment was replaced by more temporary employment. Resettlers were struggling to meet even their basic needs. However, eight years on from the original survey, this study finds the gains to be substantial. Within the sample groups, income inequality has declined, food is more secure and wellbeing is improved on 2003 levels. What is more, incomes have generally grown and are positively correlated to employment in an enterprise. It appears that the Chinese government’s resolve to stimulate the regional economy and to turn the crank on enterprise investment has paid off in this region of the Three Gorges Dam.
Dr Brooke Wilmsen is a Research Fellow in the School of Social Sciences and Humanities at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. She is predominantly interested in the issues of displacement, resettlement and settlement and works in a variety of contexts. She is currently undertaking a longitudinal study of those displaced by the Three Gorges Dam in China funded by an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award. Brooke has also worked for the Asian Development Bank, The World Bank, United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) and private consultancy. Recent publications can be found in World Development, Journal of Contemporary China and Geoforum
22.06.2017 | 18:00
Neubau "Holzlaube", Room -1.2009