Large dams for development: reality or myth?

Date: 17 October 2017

Venue: UAntwerp - Stadscampus - Building R - R.014 - Rodestraat 14 - 2000 Antwerp (route: UAntwerpen, Stadscampus)

Time: 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Organization / co-organization: USOS, IOB

Short description: Debate between Harry Verhoeven (Georgetown University, Qatar) and Daniƫlle Hirsch (Both Ends, the Netherlands)

About the debate

To meet growing demands for food and energy, many large dams are currently being built in low-and middle-income countries. They are often promoted by investors and governments as a boost for economic development. Potential benefits of dams include energy generation, water storage for irrigation, flood protection and the facilitation of regional integration.

However, large dams also come along with major environmental and social costs such as the disruption of surrounding ecosystems or the (forced) displacement of the reservoir population. Benefits and costs of dams are often unevenly distributed, which can lead to the exacerbation of existing inequalities.

What is thus the role for large dams in development? Can they offer developing countries key solutions to poverty alleviation, or will they predominantly lead to environmental problems, conflicts and social injustice?

Moderated by Steven Van Passel (Applied Economics - UAntwerp)

Entrance fee: For free

Registration: Via website

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