Séminaire SHS - « Downstream of the Dam: State governance and the uses and meanings of water in the Sardar Sarovar Project, Gujarat, India » - Peter Mollinga

Le séminaire IM2E « sciences sociales » d'avril a eu lieu vendredi 12 avril de 10h à 12h en Salle Mosson à l’Irstea, UMR G-eau, Montpellier

Peter Mollinga nous a présenté : « Downstream of the Dam: State governance and the uses and meanings of water in the Sardar Sarovar Project, Gujarat, India ».

Cette présentation était mise en discussion par François Molle.

Research team: Peter P. Mollinga (SOAS University of London), R. Parthasarathy (GIDR Ahmedabad), Pranjal Deekshit (TISS Mumbai) and Esha Shah (WRM Wageningen University)

 

Description

This research project analyses the performative, consumptive and productive uses and meanings of water in and of the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP), a large dam with reservoir on the Narmada river, located at the border of Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh States, India. The main focus of the project is how water is being used in the state of Gujarat, of which the SSP covers the larger part, and the meanings that water and the infrastructure that supplies it have acquired since water was released from the dam in the early 2000s. The water and the project were carriers of meaning well before the project got constructed and became operational – the project is best known for the opposition against its building. While originally designed for agricultural use and hydropower generation, the scope of uses and meanings has considerably expanded in the past decades, and particularly since the dam has become operational.  The use of Narmada water for domestic purposes and for urban and industrial development is now prominent. Based on a review of the  relatively limited amount of scholarship on the functioning and imagining of the project since it became operational, and a series of field visits, the presentation explores how water infrastructure functions as ‘logistical power’ in state governance, an exploration that is framed within a broader Cultural Political Economy (CPE) perspective on water and development, and outlines an interdisciplinary agenda for further research.

 

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