Where Is the Power? Transnational Networks, Authority and the Dispute over the Xayaburi Dam on the Lower Mekong Mainstream

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Abstract

Accounts of hydro-hegemony and counter hydro-hegemony provide state-based conceptions of power in international river basins. However, authority should be seen as transnationalized as small states develop coping strategies to augment their authority over decision-making processes. The article engages Rosenau’s spheres of authority concept to argue that hydro-hegemony is exercised by actors embedded in spheres of authority that reshape actor configurations as they emerge. These spheres consist of complex networks challenging customary notions of the local-global dichotomy and hydro-hegemony. Hydro-hegemony is therefore not fixed. The article examines these processes by analysing the dispute over the Xayaburi Dam in the Mekong Basin.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)911-928
JournalWater International
Volume40
Issue number5-6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2015

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