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Title: Participation, dwelling and environment : re-housing an indigenous Karen community in Thailand
Author: Sukkasame, Sadanu
ISNI:       0000 0004 9354 6474
Awarding Body: Newcastle University
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2019
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This study aims to understand and evaluate the impact and effectiveness of a rehousing process on the lifestyle and culture of a Karen community and to identify supportive factors and challenges affecting the process. The study investigates the people of a Karen village who were forcibly evicted from their village homes by armed Thai forces and national park officials. They were relocated to new areas further from the Thai-Myanmar border but still within the national park where they constructed initial dwellings in a new village. In 2014 the official Community Organizations Development Institute (CODI) approved funding for the first Karen Housing Project to improve their dwellings, and I volunteered to lead the project. The project was performed cooperatively with workshops and meetings to enable the Karen people to be the central actors of the solution-finding process. This project was carried out between 2013 and 2018 to document the functional and structural changes to the new dwellings and the community. The study employs a multi-method perspective: architectural, anthropological and sociological. A participatory and collaborative approach was employed throughout the project, with a focus on design workshops which were a key approach of the study. Furthermore, sub-themes focus on socio-cultural, environmental and economic issues, such as kinship, gender, tradition, income, building materials and construction. All of them being influential to analyse the Karen dwelling process within a traditional culture and the use of domestic space. The systematic participatory process brought me closer to understanding how we can work to understand and develop reciprocity in determining good practice. The empirical findings enhance our understanding of the roles and responsibilities of parties involved and the process of working in the indigenous environment. The building process of the indigenous houses relates not only to the common conditions, such as climate, materials, technology, economics or culture, but also to the pressures from the national park policies. This re-housing process is a starting point for collective community management and rethinking the park policies for future living in relation to sustainable resource management and cultural integrity.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Bangkok University
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available