Jamie Skinner's blog posts
Jamie Skinner discusses whether tightening up standards to minimise social and environmental risks could shift the debate on hydropower.
On International Women's Day, we look at how relocating to make way for big dams in West Africa has particular impacts on women.
In the face of displacement due to large-scale development projects, can innovative legal solutions be used to protect smallholders' land rights?
The economics and distribution of development benefits of large dams continue to be a source of controversy. Every dam is different, and efforts to generalise from a few (often well known, but sometimes exceptional) examples continue to cause challenges in reaching common ground on the past development contribution of the 50,000 dams worldwide today and the need for more.
Development is a messy, often inequitable business. Investments and policies usually favour some people or sectors over others and the playing field of opportunity is rarely flat. Should development be just for the majority or is it possible to ensure development for all? Nowhere is this choice more visible than in the approaches governments take to resettlement and downstream impacts from large dams.
A new dam in Niger could generate electricity, create thousands of hectares of irrigated land and guarantee water for domestic use and fisheries. But making sure the dam benefits everyone is a complicated business.
Water and water crises will dominate the news this week from Marseille, where the sector convenes for its triennial global meeting, the World Water Forum. Some 33,000 participants attended the last one, in Istanbul in 2009, and similar numbers are expected this year.