University of Wisconsin–Madison

Friday Forum: Tun Myint

“Citizen Science and Sustainability: How Does Individual Knowledge Relate to System Level Social-Ecological Interactions in Pak Mun Dam Case in Thailand”

Tun Myint, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Political Science
Affiliated Faculty in Environmental Studies
Carleton College

October 13, 2017
Noon-1:30 P.M.
206 Ingraham Hall

Over half a century of the power struggle between local communities and the state on environmental governance issues in Southeast Asia, the conception of data, knowledge, and science went through critical interpretation as more open framework of governance structures emerged in the majority of the countries.  In Eurocentric view of educational practices and political orders, the science is perceived to belong only to official academic research practices and in research.  That science is believed to be taken as the ultimate authority in decision making processes of governmental institutions.  This view of science considers local knowledge and tacit knowledge of individuals as inferior in decision making processes.  The paper examines the case of Thai Baan research which counters the Eurocentric practice of science.  In so doing, the paper explains how cooperative science conducted by local communities and individuals plays critical role in animating associational life in democracy and democratic decision making processes of social ecological systems.