Community-Driven Regulation: Balancing Development and the Environment in Vietnam

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Overview

In Community-Driven Regulation Dara O'Rourke proposes a new policy model for pollution control, based on detailed case studies from rapidly industrializing Vietnam. He shows that environmental problems can be solved when affected community groups mobilize to pressure both state and industry and argues that this strategy, which he terms "community-driven regulation," used successfully in Vietnam, can achieve similar success in other countries.Vietnam's recent entry into the world economy has brought many benefits to its population--more jobs, higher income levels, more plentiful goods and services. But this very rapid growth of industry has also brought predictable environmental problems. Areas near industrial plants experience declining crop yields and polluted groundwater; residents downwind from factories suffer respiratory ailments. Vietnam thus serves as a model for nations dealing with environmental problems during the transition to an industrialized economy and global integration.O'Rourke offers six detailed case studies, based on his own fieldwork in Vietnam, that show how strategies adopted by local communities achieved positive results despite a strong state bias toward development and the absence of existing advocacy groups, a free press, or politically vulnerable elected officials. The firms studied are both state-run and multinational;
they include a Taiwanese textile factory, a state-owned fertilizer plant, and a Korean factory producing shoes for Nike. The communities affected range from traditional villages to urban neighborhoods. O'Rourke's policy model of community-state synergy challenges traditional notions of state-centric environmental regulation and questions the growing literature that identifies market mechanisms as the best way to solve environmental problems in developing countries.

The MIT Press

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher

"Dara O'Rourke brings a critically important new dimension to the discourse on sustainability: human agency expressed through community-driven environmental regulation. He offers a rich, detailed account of the Vietnamese people's struggle to sustain their communities against global industry. This book gives hope that continuing political renovation and the rise of civil society in Vietnam can more effectively meet the challenges of environmental management through community-state synergies."--C. Michael Douglass, Director, Globalization Research Center and
Professor of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Hawaii

The MIT Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262650649
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2003
  • Series: Urban and Industrial Environments
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Dara O'Rourke is Associate Professor of Environmental and Labor Policy at the University of
California, Berkeley, and cofounder and Chairman of GoodGuide, Inc., a database for safe, healthy,
green, and ethical products based on scientific ratings. He is author of Community-Driven
Regulation: Balancing Development and the Environment in Vietnam
(MIT Press) and coauthor of Can We Put an End to Sweatshops?
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Table of Contents

Preface
Acronyms and Vietnamese Phrases
1 The Challenges of Balancing Development and the Environment 1
2 Development and the Environment in Vietnam 31
3 Cohesion, Connection, and Community Action 53
4 Plans, Profits, and Pollution Decisions: Motivations, Resources, and Firm Responses 109
5 Motivating a Conflicted Environmental State 147
6 Information, Accountability, and Direct Pressure Politics: The Role of Extralocal Actors 187
7 Community-Driven Regulation: Community Alarms and State Responses 215
8 Regulation against the Odds: Conclusions and Policy Implications 231
Appendix 253
Notes 269
References 273
Index 287
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