Issues in Implementing Integrated Water Resources Management in Thailand


Announcing: Chintraruck, Alin and John Walsh, “Issues in Implementing Integrated Water Resources Management in Thailand,” Global Business and Economics Review, Vol. 17, No. 4, pp.417–429, DOI: 10.1504/GBER.2015.072497, available at:

Abstract: This research paper explores the issues surrounding the implementation of the integrated water resources management (IWRM) system in Thailand. The research is based on in depth, personal interviews with experts from 20 different institutions using semi-structured interview agendas and synthesised with secondary data. The principal problems involved with implementing IWRM result from political interference, the cross-scalar nature of contests for resources, the complexity of Thailand’s water sources and lack of awareness. The research took place in the aftermath of the disastrous 2011 floods and so the fierce urgency of disaster mitigation coloured the opinions of some respondents. The interaction between private and public sectors in Thailand involves the intersection between feudal and capitalist systems. To overcome blockages, it may be necessary to incorporate additional use of market mechanisms in water provision. The need for genuine public participation in this debate is noted. The paper approaches water resources from the management perspective rather than the more normal technical or engineering approach.

Keywords: Thailand; water management; integrated management; water resources management; IWRM; public participation; private sector; public sector; political interference; resource contests; complex water sources; lack of awareness; flooding; disaster mitigation.


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