Development from Resettlement? Comparing Differences in Food Security and Coping Strategies between Resettled Households in Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam
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The economy of Vietnam has been growing rapidly since the Đổi Mới reforms in 1986. As a respond to corresponding higher demands for electricity, more than 300 hydropower dams have been built ever since. While hydropower electricity contributed to further sustainable economic development of the country, the projects have been responsible for the displacement of more than 200,000 people. Unfortunately, most displaced people faced a reduction of living standards due to unclear resettlement policies. Higher rates of food insecurity are a prevalent problem, as many former subsistence farmers lose their cultivable land in exchange for compensation money. Based on earlier research from Dr. Ty Pham Huu, this paper researches longer-term impacts of dam-induced resettlement of three resettlement villages in Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Main findings indicate that more than a convenient location, resettlers need time to adapt to the new situation and develop livelihoods in a sustainable manner. Moreover, to adapt to permanent issues such as worse land quality, natural disasters and pollution, resettlers need comprehensive training and assistance in order to decrease chances of health issues and food insecurity.