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  • Thumbnail for Sustainable development : finding a paradigm shift in Northern Thailand
    Sustainable development : finding a paradigm shift in Northern Thailand by Leichliter, Sydney Marie

    This paper seeks to explore the complex interactions of stakeholders in Northern Thailand’s rural development and examines the local, village-level impacts of different development discourses in an attempt to find what within these agendas has proven successful to local communities. Most important in this analysis is the role of local knowledge, villager agendas, and cultural durability in light of these projects. Looking at a variety of case studies from a number of different stakeholders in the conversation I analyze the impacts, both positive and negative, of the current rural development paradigms. Primarily, this paper examines the impacts of agricultural and forest development in ethnic hill tribe villages throughout Thailand. Rural villages in Southeast Asia’s Golden Triangle, the area where Laos, Thailand and China converge, still heavily rely on agriculture for their own self-sufficiency and incomes (Bello et al. 1998), although, land transformation and ecological degradation has created land insecurity in many of these Northern regions (UHDP, personal communication, January 26, 2013). [Keywords: sustainable development, indigenous knowledge, Northern Thailand]