Pressures on, and degradation of, natural resources and environment, land-grabbing, unemployment and precarious jobs, poverty and increasing inequality, deficient public services, population displacements or forced migrations, uncontrolled urbanization, corruption and mismanagement, etc., numerous are the ingredients to feed discontents related to economic growth. So is the case in Asia, marked for decades by a fast-paced economic development, but where the living conditions remain, in many countries, a day-to-day struggle for a large part of the population, for social, economic or environmental reasons. The components mentioned above can play as severe disruptive factors to social cohesion, based on the definition given to it by OECD (2011: 53-4): Degree of exclusion + social capital (trust in institutions) + social mobility, notions interestingly completed by other authors (Bruno Jetin, 2016: 268) with the criteria of “Governance” and “Political legitimacy”. However, in comparable conditions, the factors above don’t necessarily lead to social unrest, showing the high degree of local population resilience, thanks to their adaptation capacity to new situations, but also to other factors, often related to specific local governance context and modalities (i.e. leadership style, inclusive governance, measures favoring wellbeing, etc.).
The proposed panel will present a diversified range of case studies, in themes and in places: Impacts of irrigation development on aquifers in India, last residents of mining settlements in China, Forest management in Thailand, Climate change led emigration and Women’s labor supply in Vietnam, residents of shrinking suburbs in Japan, large-scale development projects in Indonesia. The objective is to identify, for each case study, the main explicative factors and triggers at game in social resilience. Furthermore, the final discussion will attempt to reach a generalization on the studied topic.
SustainAsia is a research programme carried on (2018-2023) by five French UMIFRES (research centre under both French ministries of Foreign Affairs and Research) located in Asia as well as five of their local partners and the UMR PALOC, in order to shed a scientific light on the challenges posed by high and unequal economic growth in a fragile environment (Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development in Asia: Governance and Societies Confronted with Environmental Challenges). The research team intends to conduct: A Multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary research; A Comparative research; A Networked research: transdisciplinary, trans-UMIFRE and international (between France and six Asian countries).