An Application of 'Governing the Commons' on Irrigation Institutions in Thailand

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"This paper aims to apply Ostrom's model of self-organizing entities to govern common pool resources (CPR) on the irrigation institutions in Thailand. This application is an academic exercise that would help me to understand Ostrom's Governing the Commons. Information regarding Thailand in all respects, e.g. water users groups, Thai society and culture, policy trend of the Royal Irrigation Department (RID), etc. is purely based on personal experience, thus limited precision will be anticipated. Ostrom's focus on the bottom-up approach (i.e. even the institutional changes should be proposed by irrigation communities and not the central government) is acknowledged. But since I am not a member of such communities, my perspective will mainly be from the side of a bureaucrat who wants to see changes. Since I have never spent adequate portion of time with any single irrigation association, this paper will rely on a very generally perceived features of irrigation associations that I extensively visited as part of my official duties. This preliminary brainstorm would pave a way for a more systematic study based on specific water associations that would reveal more particulars and variables of the complex world."



Governing the Commons, irrigation, common pool resources