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Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography

Impact factor: 0.638 5-Year impact factor: 1.14 Print ISSN: 0129-7619 Online ISSN: 1467-9493 Publisher: Wiley Blackwell (Blackwell Publishing)

Subject: Geography

Most recent papers:

  • Free satellite imagery and digital elevation model analyses enabling natural resource management in the developing world: case studies from Eastern Indonesia.
    Rohan Peter Fisher, Sarah Elizabeth Hobgen, Kristianus Haleberek, Nelson Sula, Iradaf Mandaya.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. August 31, 2017
    Decentralization of governance and natural resource management is an ongoing process in many parts of Africa and Asia. Natural resource management requires spatial land resource data for planning. However, currently the financial and human capacity for natural resource mapping, monitoring and modelling remains low in local governments. In this context, this paper explores how new opportunities provided by the increasing availability of free satellite imagery, digital elevation data and open source spatial analysis software, can be applied by local government and NGOs to conduct sophisticated natural resource mapping and modelling in ways that meet their needs and incorporates local knowledge. Reported are cases of a local government using free geospatial data and GIS software to improve evidence‐based natural resource management in the developing world with a focus on raster data applications for satellite image analysis and terrain modelling. It is argued that, through removing barriers to uptake, such applications provide a means of decentralizing landscape analysis skills to improve local natural resource management. This hypothesis is supported through examples of a local government applying these tools in eastern Indonesia, and within this context barriers to wider adoption are explored.
    August 31, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12210   open full text
  • Emission of methane and nitrous oxides from agricultural soils and related global warming potentials of Murshidabad District, West Bengal.
    Soham Biswas, Namita Chakma, Swati Mollah.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. August 25, 2017
    Agricultural activities emit substantial amounts of methane (CH4) and nitrous oxides (N2O), the two important greenhouse gases (GHG) with high global warming potentials (GWP). So far, many studies have already been carried out at national and state level, but lack micro‐level (district or block‐level) inventory in India. The present study sheds light on the flux of CH4 and N2O (from all possible sources) from agricultural soil of various blocks in the Murshidabad district, based on the inventory prepared, using the IPCC methodology, with adjusted emission factors and coefficients appropriate for the local level. The economy of the Murshidabad district almost completely rests on agriculture as more than 80 per cent of the population is directly or indirectly dependent on it for their livelihood. Paddy is the dominating crop, cultivated on more than 60 per cent of the gross cropped area. The present work is based on the review of various literature and reports collected from respective state government offices and websites. Results show that CH4 and N2O emission from the agricultural fields are 126.405 Gg and 0.652 Gg respectively for the year 2011−12 with a large scale spatial variation (block‐level) within the district.
    August 25, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12207   open full text
  • Tropicality, the unruly Atlantic and social utopias: the French explorer Henri Coudreau (1859 − 1899).
    Federico Ferretti.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 31, 2017
    This paper addresses the works of Henri Coudreau, a little‐known French explorer of Guiana and Amazonia who was later forgotten by the ‘heroic’ histories of exploration because of his unruliness and nonconformist attitudes. Drawing on the literature of postcolonialism and tropicality as well as on recent studies of anti‐colonialist geographies, I address for the first time Coudreau's geography from the perspective of anarchist and critical thinking. My main argument is that Coudreau's work is a further example of the complexity and heterogeneity of the European intellectual field during the imperial age. Despite having come of age intellectually among all the European racist and ethnocentric prejudices of his day, Coudreau developed a different outlook thanks to two factors, viz., his personal experience in living for years with the indigenous communities of Amazonia, and his exposure to anarchist anti‐colonialist ideas through his collaboration with Elisée Reclus. Coudreau's tropical utopia of an independent Amazonia, and his endorsement of the stateless nature of local communities, ran counter to French imperial politics, occasioning Coudreau's dismissal from the French administration and his professional exile in Brazil at the time of the Franco‐Brazilian border dispute (1897−1900).
    July 31, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12209   open full text
  • Dammed and diversionary: The multi‐dimensional framing of Brazil's Belo Monte dam.
    Ed Atkins.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 13, 2017
    Belo Monte is one of the most divisive dams in Brazilian history, becoming entangled in a thirty‐year struggle between pro‐ and anti‐dam interests over the role of the facility within a complex web of Brazilian development and the future of the Brazilian Amazon. This research explores how the proponents of Belo Monte have adopted a number of policy frames as a means of deflection, to divide the opposition and legitimize the project. It investigates this claim by analyzing speeches given within the Brazilian Câmara dos Deputados and the public speeches of high‐level politicians. These sources, organized around a framework previously identified by Ahlers et al. (), show that the government and individual politicians have used a variety of framing devices to legitimize the hydroelectric facility. Principal methods of framing used also demonstrate how contemporary narratives (e.g. sustainability) have been employed to deflect opposition criticism and widen the scheme's perceived beneficiaries. In doing so, this paper demonstrates how the transformation represented by Belo Monte encompassed not only a process of engineering but also a re‐articulation of the complex and its role in modern Brazil.
    July 13, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12206   open full text
  • Impacts of artisanal gold mining systems on soil and woody vegetation in the semi‐arid environment of northern Ethiopia.
    Hailemariam Meaza, Mushir Ali, Zbelo Tesfamariam, Niguse Abebe.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 06, 2017
    Gold mining is a tremendously important economic activity in rural districts of Ethiopia. We assessed the impacts of artisanal gold mining on soil and woody vegetation in northern Ethiopia. Estimation of soil loss, plant inventory, group discussions and transect studies were used to address the research questions. We employed t‐test to compare woody species and soil loss between mined and unmined sites. Moreover, we ran one‐way ANOVA to compare the average volume of soil loss among the mining sites. The study shows that gold mining removed colossal volumes of soil from the mining landscape with a significant difference among gold mining sites (P ≤ 0.05). Soil loss between the mined and unmined sites was also significant (P ≤ 0.05). Moreover, gold mining destroyed massive tracts of vegetation. Woody species encountered at plot level decreased from artisanal gold mined to unmined sites (P ≤ 0.05). Moreover, dead trees and exposed tree roots were higher in mined than the unmined areas (P ≤ 0.05). This discouraged regeneration and recruitment of woody vegetation. To conclude, gold mining system converted vegetated sites and farmlands into dysfunctional landscape. Therefore, we suggest that combined rehabilitation efforts are required to overcome the challenges of artisanal gold mining on sustainable land management in northern Ethiopia.
    July 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12203   open full text
  • Climate‐induced migration: Exploring local perspectives in Kiribati.
    Lacey Allgood, Karen E. McNamara.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2017
    A number of studies have indicated that the long term habitability of Kiribati, a low‐lying country in the central tropical Pacific Ocean, is tenuous given the impacts of climate change, particularly sea level rise. In an effort to plan for the resultant challenges ahead, a number of national policies and programs have surfaced to reduce the impact of localized changes on people's livelihoods. This study explores how local community members (n = 60) have taken it upon themselves to respond to the impacts of climate change by utilizing a number of different strategies. The results highlight that: first, respondents consider climate change to be the most concerning issue for sustaining their livelihoods; second, respondents have built physical defences, relocated temporarily or permanently, and sought government assistance to adapt to localized climate‐related impacts; and third, the majority of respondents indicated that they would migrate as a long term strategy to respond to the future impacts of climate change.
    July 05, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12202   open full text
  • Stream energy distribution below Eleyele Dam in Southwestern Nigeria.
    Adeyemi Oludapo Olusola, Olutoyin Fashae.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. June 29, 2017
    Expressing the rate of energy dissipation either within a basin or in a downstream manner is important in understanding occurrence and association between various morphological variables. This study focuses on the downstream variation in stream power and its relationship with morphological variates along the main channel of River Ona, Ibadan, Nigeria. River Ona stretches for 20.5 km downstream of Eleyele Dam. Twenty‐seven (27) points were sampled along this stretch. The 27 points were averaged into nine (9) reaches. At each cross‐section, channel characteristics were observed and measured. These include: width (W), depth (D), velocity (V), slope (S), Cross‐sectional area (A), discharge (Q), total stream power (TSP), specific stream power (SSP), width‐depth ratio (W/D), hydraulic radius (R) and wetted perimeter (P). This study confirmed that the influence of a dam present upstream of a river channel significantly alters the behaviour of slope and this in essence affects the distribution of energy along the river channel. Slope produces a logarithmic relationship with increasing distance downstream (Y = ‐32.79‐0.70InS, r = 0.70, r2 = 0.49, p < 0.05) while there was no significant relationship between Q and distance downstream.
    June 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12204   open full text
  • Spatial and temporal variations in thunderstorm casualties over India.
    Pankaj Bhardwaj, Omvir Singh, Dinesh Kumar.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. June 13, 2017
    Thunderstorms are one of the most dangerous convective weather events. Despite the recent advances in prediction of convective storms worldwide, thousands of casualties occur annually. In the present study, the authors highlight specifically, thunderstorm‐related casualties reported in India from 1978–2012. Analysis of long‐term data have revealed about 16 308 casualties resulting from 1381 thunderstorm events with an average of 465 casualties occurring annually. The maximum number of casualties were concentrated in north‐eastern and central north‐eastern states. About 80 per cent of total casualties were recorded in West Bengal (23 per cent), Assam (20 per cent), Orissa (14 per cent), Bihar (13 per cent) and Jharkhand (8 per cent) states. The national casualties rate per million population per year and casualties density standardized by area has been found to be 0.50 and 5.07, respectively. Male casualties were found to be more prominent than female and children casualties, probably due to the larger proportion of males performing their work outdoors. The number of thunderstorm events and casualties was observed to be highest during pre‐monsoon season and lowest during winter. It is believed that the findings from this study will help policy makers to draw strategies to cope with the perils of thunderstorms.
    June 13, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12201   open full text
  • It's not all about wealth and beauty: Changing perceptions of fatness among Makola market women of Accra, Ghana.
    Charlotte Wrigley‐Asante, Samuel Agyei‐Mensah, Faustina Adomaa Obeng.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. June 09, 2017
    Within the African context, body shape preferences may be influenced by culture without necessarily taking into consideration health implications. Thus, fatness is culturally associated with beauty, prosperity, and prestige while thinness is perceived as a sign of ill‐health or poverty. Using a cross section of Makola market women, who traditionally are perceived as fat and affluent, our findings revealed that the perception of fatness as a sign of richness and beauty is changing due to women's access to knowledge and information on the health implications of fatness. The challenge for these women however, is adhering to healthy lifestyles despite living sedentary lives in the market place which is a conducive environment for one to become fat. We recommend that qualified professionals should encourage these women through continuous programmes on regenerative health and nutrition aimed at healthy lifestyle behaviour at the market places. The social groups that women belong to should be targeted, trained and equipped with the right information on healthy living so that they can disseminate this information to other members of their networks.
    June 09, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12200   open full text
  • After the exodus: Exploring migrant attitudes to documentation, brokerage and employment following the 2014 mass withdrawal of Cambodian workers from Thailand.
    Sabina Lawreniuk, Laurie Parsons.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. June 05, 2017
    This paper uses the exodus of Cambodian migrant workers from Thailand in June 2014 as a focal point around which to explore Cambodian migrant attitudes towards the systems of documentation and brokerage that influence their movement. From the perspective of Cambodian returnees and their families, it builds on recent work exploring narratives of brokerage by demonstrating how documentation itself — and by extension the legality of migration — is viewed through a contextual lens. Specifically, it argues that documentation is not only viewed according to the formal regulatory framework governing migration between the two countries, but forms part of a more complex structure of influences in which norms of employment and brokerage are equally prominent. From this position, the paper suggests that migrants did not only respond directly to threats of a crackdown by authorities following the 2014 coup, but were additionally influenced by the actions of employers and brokers, whose guarantees of protection — or otherwise — were seen as vitally important in their migration decisions.
    June 05, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12199   open full text
  • Application of a new river classification scheme to Australia's tropical rivers.
    Wayne Erskine, Mike Saynor, John Lowry.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 08, 2017
    A revised typology of Australian tropical rivers was applied to the complete channel network (named and major rivers) shown on 1:250 000 topographic maps for three large drainage basins in northern Australia (Daly River, NT; Fitzroy River, WA; Flinders River, Qld). Reach mapping and classification were conducted using the revised typology. The 12 major river types proposed were: (1) bedrock rivers; (2) bedrock‐confined and ‐constrained rivers; (3) low sinuosity (straight) rivers; (4) meandering rivers; (5) wandering rivers; (6) anabranching rivers; (7) chains of ponds; (8) gullies; (9) floodouts; (10) lakes, swamps, billabongs and wetlands; (11) non‐channelized valley floors; and (12) estuarine rivers. The 12 major river types were developed based on river reach mapping for more than 264 000 km2 of tropical Australian catchments. At scales larger than 1:250 000, subdivision of each major river type is recommended. In the Daly and Fitzroy catchments, confined and constrained rivers dominate, whereas in the Flinders and Fitzroy catchments, anabranching rivers dominate. The dominant river types need benchmarking with adequate numbers of control reaches so that channel changes induced by human and natural impacts can be measured by reference to the stability of these controls. Wandering rivers, floodouts and non‐channelized valley floors were rare for the 1:250 000 channel network in northern Australia but need inclusion in national parks.
    May 08, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12196   open full text
  • Analysis of groundwater quality for irrigation purposes in shallow aquifers: A case study from West Aceh, Indonesia.
    Sayed Murtadha, Ismail Yussof, Rosmadi Fauzi, Ichwana Ramli.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. April 20, 2017
    The aim of this study is to evaluate the groundwater quality in shallow aquifers from West Aceh, Sumatra, for irrigation uses. Groundwater samples have been collected from 32 stations for pH, electrical conductivity (EC), sodium adsorption ratio (SAR), total dissolved solids (TDS), sodium percentage (per cent Na) and residual sodium carbonate (RSC) analysis. Evaluation of water quality for irrigation using the United States Salinity Laboratory classifications suggests that the majority of the groundwater samples are good for irrigation. The crop tolerance of irrigation water salinity, as based on EC value, showed that paddy (rice), soybeans and sweet tomatoes are suitable for agricultural cultivation, but that corn and field beans are not suitable. Results indicate that, if used for agricultural irrigation, the groundwater quality ranges from excellent to good, except for a few locations (e.g. Meureubo sub‐district) which indicate signs of deterioration.
    April 20, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12197   open full text
  • Rainfall variability, rainfed agriculture and degree of human marginality in North Guanajuato, Mexico.
    Rebeca Granados, Jesus Soria, Moises Cortina.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. March 29, 2017
    Mexico has a heterogeneous climate due to its geographical location. Half of the Mexican territory is dryland, mostly in the centre and north of the country, within which agriculture is the main activity in the primary production sector. At present, climate variability has a strong impact on Mexican agriculture. This study analysed rainfall variability, its impact on the agricultural productivity in terms of harvested quantity and productivity of 1996‐2014, and in parallel, the role that socioeconomic development plays on the well‐being of the population who live in areas with rainfed agriculture and a semi‐dry climate. The data obtained were analysed with the Statistical Analysis System. A positive correlation was found between rainfall and productivity (r = 0.76 for maize; r = 0.711 for beans). Rainfall variations therefore have a great impact on agricultural productivity, on food security and on the economy. Besides production losses, a parallel consequence is marginalization of the population because producers' income is increasingly reduced due to smaller crop volumes.
    March 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12191   open full text
  • Vertical differentiation in urban space: A case of Aizawl city.
    Benjamin L. Saitluanga.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. March 27, 2017
    Cities are characterized by sociospatial differentiation. Intra‐urban inequality is found in cities across the world. Cities in the ‘peripheral south’ have been neglected in spite of their significant role in theoretical formulations and generalizations. The present paper attempts to argue that sociospatial differentiation is an inherent characteristic of cities, although the spatial form of inequality may vary depending on the specific culture and physical geography of the area. In the remote city of Aizawl in the eastern Himalayan region of India, multi‐storey buildings are cohabitated by higher and lower income classes ‐ the former were found at the top floors and the latter at the bottom floors. The vertical arrangement of income classes within a single building is seen as an adjustment strategy of the increasingly urbanized ‘tribal’ society in the hilly terrain of the city.
    March 27, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12194   open full text
  • ‘Census Towns’ in India and what it means to be ‘urban’: Competing epistemologies and potential new approaches.
    Srilata Sircar.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. March 22, 2017
    The classification of 2 532 new settlements in the Census of India 2011 as ‘urban’, and specifically as ‘Census Towns’, has brought small and emerging urban centres back into the purview of urban studies and urban development in India. Taking this to be a point of entry, this article seeks to explore how the urban has been framed and approached from different and competing epistemological standpoints in the Indian context. First, it attempts to outline the different epistemologies of the urban in India, which may be seen as competing traditions because of the unequal stakes they have claimed so far in public and policy discourse. Then, it presents two brief case studies of Census Towns from the state of West Bengal to put forth new questions in this regard. The case studies illustrate significant gaps and discrepancies between the lived experience of the urban and its representation in dominant epistemological frameworks such as the official census. I argue that the historical development of various settlement systems, which constitutes the core narrative of urbanization in India, cannot be understood in all its complexity through mere census extracts or aerial images, but requires engagement with rich, embedded epistemologies that have taken shape within these settlements.
    March 22, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12193   open full text
  • Towards a theory of the discordant border.
    Margath Walker, Ailsa Winton.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. March 15, 2017
    Borders are often portrayed in stark terms, perhaps as national‐scale threats, or as sites of suffering, or conversely as hosts to socio‐cultural symbiosis. Yet borders are many things all at once. In this paper, we use the comparative context of the US–Mexico border and the Mexico‐Guatemala border to critique what we call the ‘border as hegemony’, a borderscape constructed through obstructions, punitive policing and reinforcing the limits of state control. Instead, we propose a model of the ‘border as discord’. In our heuristic framework, diverse mobilities are embraced, interests of borderlanders are acknowledged and prioritized, and borders are interpreted not as a security threat but as a resource for change.
    March 15, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12192   open full text
  • ‘Development’, resistance and the geographies of affect in Oecussi: Timor‐Leste's Special Economic Zone (ZEESM).
    Michael Rose.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 24, 2017
    In 2013, it was announced that Timor‐Leste's Oecussi enclave would become the site of a special economic zone. Arid, and inhabited mostly by semi‐subsistence farmers from West Timor's Meto ethno‐linguistic group, the plan entails remaking the enclave as an industrial, transport and tourism hub. To facilitate this, in mid‐2015 the authorities began the process of clearing hundreds of indigenous gardens and homes from land slated for mega‐projects intended to make the region attractive to foreign investors. In this paper, I describe how, for many Meto, land tends to be experienced as a spiritually mediated ‘geography of affect’ (Lea & Woodward, 2010) in which questions of place, belonging, spirituality and personal fortune cannot easily be divided, a reality that raises questions about the suitability of the plan's vision of globalized and investment driven ‘development’. Drawing on Scott, I argue that in Oecussi, spirits associated with the land are not apolitical, but are sometimes perceived as acting to protect locals against powerful outsiders – a characteristically Meto ‘weapon of the weak’ that is in keeping with their previous encounters with colonial regimes.
    February 24, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12190   open full text
  • Do perceptions of the Red‐tailed Hawk indicate a human‐wildlife conflict on the island of La Gonave, Haiti?
    Justin White, Lisa M. Kennedy, Maria Elisa Christie.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 10, 2017
    The Caribbean subspecies of the Red‐tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis solitudinus or B.j. jamaicensis) is the largest native carnivore on the island of La Gonave, Haiti, and the island's apex predator. On other Caribbean islands, raptors have been persecuted by local people typically because of their depredation of livestock. In addition to possible persecution from humans, Red‐tailed Hawks on La Gonave face challenges from island‐wide timber overharvest and rapid land‐cover changes. To better understand the human‐apex predator relationship on La Gonave, we surveyed islanders about their perceptions of, and interactions with, the Red‐tailed Hawk. According to 121 respondents from 10 villages, La Gonavans do not hunt, kill, or consume Red‐tailed Hawks. Our study revealed a notable absence of negative perceptions of the hawk by respondents despite intense hawk depredation of domestic chickens. While the chicken depredation may lead outside observers to consider the human‐hawk relationship on La Gonave as representative of a human‐wildlife conflict, our interview data do not support that conception. Our findings reflect an important conversation in related contemporary scientific literature about what constitutes human‐wildlife conflicts across various cultures. Despite tolerance by residents, Red‐tailed Hawks on La Gonave remain threatened by habitat degradation.
    February 10, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12189   open full text
  • Life in de facto statelessness in enclaves in India and Bangladesh.
    Hosna J. Shewly.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 06, 2017
    Drawing on conceptualization of statelessness and ethnographic research on crucial insights of rightessness, this paper investigates how the politico‐geographic‐legality constructs statelessness in the enclaves in India and Bangladesh. Following the decolonization process in 1947, both India and Pakistan/Bangladesh inherited more than 200 enclaves, which comprise 80 per cent of the world's enclaves. With improved bilateral relations, India and Bangladesh officially exchanged the enclaves on 1 August 2015, and the enclave dwellers will gradually be granted citizenship rights over the next few years. In this period of transition from statelessness to statehood, this paper can be read as contemporary history. This paper will draw attention to three aspects of statelessness. First, conceptualization of statelessness not only applies to the refugeehood or de‐territorialization of people but also relates to the process of constructing transterritorial stateless people. Second, this paper will discuss the condition of statelessness constructed in a politico‐geographic‐legal trap. And finally, the paper calls for a wider empirical and critical focus on the hidden geographies of de facto statelessness.
    February 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12181   open full text
  • Forever transnational: The ambivalence of return and cross‐border activities of the Shan across the Thailand‐Myanmar border.
    Amporn Jirattikorn.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 06, 2017
    Over the past two decades, northern Thailand has experienced a massive influx of Shan ethnic nationals from Myanmar migrating to escape economic hardship and political conflicts at home. Myanmar's recent reforms raise the question of whether these migrants will return. The paper brings together the context of current changes in Myanmar with migrants' prospects of return and the impact of large‐scale migration on homeland politics. On the one hand, the paper explores the possibility that Shan migrants could remain forever transnational, for many of them will most likely never return. On the other hand, it considers the perspective of Shan elites in Myanmar on the fact a large portion of young Shan now spend their adult lives living and working in Thailand. While out‐migration of young Shan threatens the social fabric of Shan community in Myanmar, Shan ethnonationalists strive across the Myanmar border to regain loyalty among the Shan migrant population in Thailand. By examining the two aspects, this paper attempts to shed light on the impact of transnational migration on both migrants and their home country.
    February 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12186   open full text
  • Governing industrial estates on Jakarta's periurban area: From shadow government to network governance.
    Delik Hudalah.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 06, 2017
    This article investigates the way in which periurban politics have mediated foreign direct investment relocations and facilitated the spatial restructuring of the Jakarta Metropolitan Area (JMA), one of the largest and fastest‐growing megaurban regions in Asia. We conducted a series of in‐depth interviews in Cikarang, the largest, most developed industrial estate corridor in the urban periphery of JMA. We identified institutional settings, power struggles and governance mechanisms underlying the industrial estate transitions in the past three decades. We found that periurban governance in JMA has resulted in poor infrastructure connectivity and tight interactor and inter‐regional competition. As global economic turbulence and decentralization policies restrict the effectiveness of privatization strategies, network strategies are trialled to promote sustainability and inclusiveness in JMA's industrial estates and towns.
    February 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12177   open full text
  • How does the ownership of land affect household livelihood pathways under conditions of deagrarianization? ‘Hanging in’, ‘stepping up’ and ‘stepping out’ in two north Indian villages.
    Bill Pritchard, Mark Vicol, Rosemary Jones.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 06, 2017
    In rural parts of the global South, livelihoods are diversifying away from agriculture. Nevertheless, agriculture typically still remains the backbone of rural life and is usually considered the prime source of economic security, social prestige and self‐identity. The task of narrating these somewhat contradictory processes in a conceptually coherent fashion has proven a major challenge for research. This paper responds to this problem by deploying an adapted version of Andrew Dorward's schema of households ‘hanging in, stepping up or stepping out’ of their landed interests. Dorward's middle‐ground theory provides an appropriate analytical vehicle for capturing the vagaries and situated complexities of the land‐livelihoods nexus. However the theory fails to fully appreciate the extent to which household livelihood decision making rests on complex entanglements that leverage land‐based and nonfarm activities against one another. We demonstrate the critical importance of these processes through the results of in‐depth interviews with 32 households in two north Indian villages. These interviews lead us to propose that land factors in livelihood aspirations in three fundamental ways: an arena for interpenetrated agrarian and nonagrarian livelihood streams; a base for social reproduction; and a bulwark of food (and by extension, livelihood) security through own‐production capabilities.
    February 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12180   open full text
  • The variable impact of ENSO events on regional dengue/DHF in Indonesia.
    Paula Arcari, Nigel Tapper.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 06, 2017
    Although studies have demonstrated significant associations between ENSO events and dengue fever, few have explored regional impacts on dengue fever of separate events. This study explores the impacts of two ENSO events on regional patterns of dengue/ dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF) incidence in Indonesia. Data consist of monthly cases of dengue/DHF from 1992 to 2001 for each of Indonesia's 27 provinces, and monthly figures for rainfall, rainfall anomalies, temperature, relative humidity and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). We conducted Pearson correlation analyses for each independent variable against dengue/DHF incidence, using a direct month‐by‐month correlation and applying a lag of between one and six months to each variable with respect to dengue/DHF incidence. Based on the SOI value, we identified two ENSO events between 1992 and 2001. To explore each event, we created two dummy variables and in regression analyses for eight provinces. The variance of between 12.9 per cent and 24.5 per cent in provincial dengue/DHF incidence is explained by two or three climate variables in each of the provinces (p < 0.01 to 0.1). During the 1997/98 event, the explained variance increased by between 7 per cent and 15 per cent in provinces whose climate regimes were most affected by this event. This study demonstrates that indicators of ENSO such as the SOI may assist in the forecast of potential dengue/DHF incidence and distribution in Indonesia.
    February 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12179   open full text
  • Viable insertion in agribusiness value chains? Seaweed farming after Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in Iloilo Province, the Philippines.
    Edo Andriesse, Zack Lee.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. January 19, 2017
    This article provides one of the first academic assessments of upstream agribusiness value chain and rural livelihood challenges after the November 2013 Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), which devastated many coastal communities in the central Philippines. Based on a survey and semistructured interviews among fisherfolk, seaweed farmers and other stakeholders in Iloilo Province, this article lays bare the limited viability of the seaweed value chain as a result of the recurring typhoon threat, other environmental pressures and an ineffective regional political economy. Since Typhoon Yolanda, the marginalized communities have depended on horizontal coordination and support from international civil society. The empirical results show that enhanced information dissemination and public sector cooperation are necessary for the seaweed value chain to become more inclusive. The results could also have a wider significance for rural development in other coastal areas in Southeast Asia, namely in the spheres of adaptive strategies amidst vulnerability, upstream vertical coordination and upgrading.
    January 19, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12178   open full text
  • Does carbon finance make a sustainable difference? Hydropower expansion and livelihood trade‐offs in the Red River valley, Yunnan Province, China.
    Jean‐François Rousseau.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. January 06, 2017
    The Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) is a carbon credit trading scheme intended to reduce anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and promote ‘sustainable development’. Hundreds of CDM‐sponsored hydroelectric dams have been constructed in southwest China's Yunnan Province, where carbon finance contributes substantial financial incentives to hydropower expansion. This article investigates whether riparian Handai farmers settled near the Madushan hydropower plant on the Chinese section of Red River have experienced positive outcomes from this project's participation in the CDM. I assess how Handai individuals' access to core livelihood assets has been modified following dam completion and probe how the CDM reconfigures scalar relations among the various stakeholders involved in hydropower governance in Yunnan. Though the CDM facilitates hydropower expansion, it fails to produce development that is more sustainable than ‘business as usual’ from a local perspective. Rather, the CDM consolidates hydropower governance in the same way as it unfolded in Yunnan before the province became an active participant in this scheme. The CDM also facilitates a national development campaign fostering specific socio‐economic modernization patterns in China's western provinces.
    January 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12176   open full text
  • Re‐enlivening the Indian Ocean through contemporary trade: East African traders searching for new markets in Jakarta.
    Julia Verne.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. November 04, 2016
    While much has been written about the history of mobility and trade in the Indian Ocean, recent trading connections between Eastern Africa and Asia have so far only gained very little attention. However, in Zanzibar alone, hundreds of traders regularly embark on journeys reviving old routes and further develop them, in order to take advantage of the way the global economy works today. By providing an ethnographic account of such a journey undertaken by four Zanzibari traders to Jakarta, this article gives an insight into the organization, calculations and imaginations involved in contemporary Indian Ocean trading networks. Although this trade journey clearly marks a new form of translocal mobility among Zanzibari traders, this mobile ethnography highlights how the journey is at the same time closely linked to, evokes and enlivens very old processes of mobility across the Indian Ocean, thus highlighting the dialectics between old and new mobilities, and between familiarity and strangeness.
    November 04, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12175   open full text
  • Ubuntu nests and the emergence of an African metropolis.
    Mary Njeri Kinyanjui.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. October 14, 2016
    Cities are not homogenous sociocultural entities. The city of Nairobi exhibits the phenomena of ‘cities within cities’ and ‘African city forms’. Social and economic forms of African, western and Asian cities compete for space within Nairobi. This paper refers to the African city form as the ‘African metropolis’, which exhibits the African logic, norms and values in its architecture and human social relations. The African metropolis is made up of slums, urbanized villages, self‐developed urban fringes and indigenous markets. In urban literature, these spaces are referred to as informal or unplanned settlements. As drivers of this African form of urbanism, traders and artisans use the African logic, norms and values in the construction of the African metropolis. The traders and artisans contribute to the African metropolis, by hiring labour and investing surplus earnings, and are bonded into Ubuntu communities of family, friendship and ethnicity. The paper is based on data gathered through a questionnaire survey of traders and artisans. It contributes to urban theory, by showing how less dominant and subtle forces contribute to city‐forming processes. I propose the concept of cultural villages as a strategy for blending African logic, norms and values with those of global urban planning.
    October 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12173   open full text
  • Was ‘Black Wednesday’ avoidable? The Melcom disaster in Accra puts a generation on trial.
    Martin Oteng‐Ababio.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. October 14, 2016
    This study contributes to the existing literature on disaster risk preparedness in sub‐Saharan African cities. The paper demonstrates how corruption and personal greed condemn society to the mercy of disaster events, by examining stakeholders′ perspectives on the causal factors of the collapse of a Melcom shopping centre in Accra and by situating the event within the broader context of disaster management. A high concentration of people and physical and financial assets in cities means that a single accident can cause catastrophic effects and destroy years of development gains. The paper shows how increasing urbanization is shaping where and when disaster strikes and whom it affects most. It further emphasizes the need for disaster risk reduction practitioners to communicate with urban planning professionals in the planning and implementation of development projects. Significantly, the evidence suggests that the government has failed to incorporate lessons gleaned from past disasters into policies to avert future disasters. The paper concludes that a deeper understanding of the root causes of past events and a sustained focus on risk reduction and disaster preparedness are crucial to mitigating the impact of hazards and building resilient cities.
    October 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12167   open full text
  • Towards a political economy of urban coproduction.
    Dennis Rodgers.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. October 14, 2016
    There is no abstract available for this paper.
    October 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12166   open full text
  • Decoding dispossession: Eviction and urban regeneration in Johannesburg's dark buildings.
    Matthew Wilhelm‐Solomon.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. October 14, 2016
    In January 2012 the residents of an inner‐city tenement building in Doornfontein, Johannesburg, were evicted on a court order. The building was situated in a post‐industrial neighbourhood in which thousands of South Africans and foreign nationals, many blind or disabled, live in unlawfully occupied buildings without access to water, basic sanitation, electricity and waste management services. Such buildings are known in policy discourse as ‘bad buildings’, and informally as ‘dark buildings’, invoking both a sense of developmental failure and spiritual insecurity. In this paper I analyse how urban renewal policies created social divisions and alliances not only among the residents of Chambers, which were channelled along nationalist lines, but also between the able‐bodied and disabled, and produced new social alliances. In particular, I document how a group of blind Zimbabweans experienced threats of violence and accusations of betrayal, as they were offered alternate accommodation by the evicting company because of their disability. I argue here that the pressures of private‐sector housing developments intersected with the insecurities and divisions of inner‐city social spaces and also fostered new alliances. Following the work of Deleuze and Guattari, I invoke the concept of ‘decoding dispossession’, proposing that ongoing evictions and dispossessions are characterized by simultaneous movements of ‘decoding and deterritorialization’ and ‘overcoding‐reterritorialization’.
    October 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12165   open full text
  • Postrevolutionary land encroachments in Cairo: Rhizomatic urban space making and the line of flight from illegality.
    Jamie Furniss.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. October 14, 2016
    After the January 2011 revolution, new and unpermitted constructions on previously empty land went up across Cairo at striking speed. This paper explores a case of such land encroachments carried out by waste collectors in the neighbourhood of Manshiet Nasser in Cairo, Egypt. It begins with theoretical debates about the production of urban space, arguing that the de Certeauian paradigm, in which urban marginals poach or hijack others' spaces evanescently, fails to account for the way such encroachments produce permanent new spaces rhizomatically alongside the pre‐existing order. The paper then turns to a close examination of the events in Manshiet Nasser. Although in a broad view the actors are marginals living in the ‘informal’ city, the conditions enabling the encroachments were such that only the wealthiest and most powerful members of the ‘community’ benefitted. In a context of generalized ‘illegality’, the squatters rely on practical norms and de facto recognitions to obtain some degree of tenure security. Since these efforts rely on and play off legal norms even as the squatters violate them, the paper argues that property rights in this context should be understood not in classificatory terms based on the legal/illegal binary, but rather through a trajectory of ‘becoming‐legal’: a ‘line of flight’ that approaches legality asymptotically.
    October 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12164   open full text
  • Coproducing urban space: Rethinking the formal/informal dichotomy.
    Martijn Koster, Monique Nuijten.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. October 14, 2016
    Providing an introduction to the special section ‘Close encounters: ethnographies of the coproduction of space by the urban poor’, this article sets out to argue that the image of ‘the informal’ as unruly, messy and dirty continues to inform urban planning around the world. As a reaction to this view, it contends that the informal and formal should be analysed as interconnected and that the informal sphere should be revalued. Urban development is studied as close encounters between established practices, with a locus and a history (tree‐like), and newly emerging, unstable and untraceable practices (rhizomatic). Contrary to the tendency in urban planning to conflate the formal with the tree and the informal with the rhizome, we argue that from the perspective of marginal urbanites, formal planning tends to be very arbitrary and frightening (rhizomatic), whereas informal practices can be very predictable and stable (arboreal). The article analyses residents of marginalized urban areas as inventive navigators who explore the changing physical, spatial and sociopolitical environment, avoiding threats and looking for opportunities, grounded in their everyday practices and life histories. The article concludes that marginal urbanites should be acknowledged as coproducers of urban space and that the right to ‘coproduce’ the city lies at the heart of the call for the right to the city.
    October 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12160   open full text
  • Enacting immanent potentialities: Tcheb‐tchib strategies at the centre of the urban fringe in Nouakchott, Mauritania.
    Christian Vium.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. September 07, 2016
    The urban fringe areas of Nouakchott, the capital city of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, have become virtual epicentres of informal property speculation, as the state‐owned land that people illegally inhabit becomes an increasingly valuable commodity in the wake of urban redevelopment plans and vast infrastructural development projects. By applying ingenious ‘poaching’ strategies based on anticipation, the marginalized, impoverished people inhabiting these areas appropriate and manipulate space in order to survive. In their attempt to counter the state's technologies of governance through what is commonly known as tcheb‐tchib, a form of creative improvisation, they become a driving force in the dynamic and contested reconfigurations of the urban landscape. Based on extended ethnographic fieldwork focusing on the strategies of former nomads who are now sedentarized on the urban fringe, this article conceives large‐scale urban renewal as a dynamic process that generates an emergent space of immanent potentiality that the urban poor attempt to strategically appropriate and enact to make the most of a potentially destructive process.
    September 07, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12158   open full text
  • Closing down bars in the inner city centre: Informal urban planning, civil insecurity and subjectivity in Bolivia.
    Helene Risør.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. August 17, 2016
    The paper presents an ethnographic analysis of a group of secondary school students' protests against (illegal) bars in the city centre of El Alto, Bolivia. It shows how informal and formal practices are entangled through the state's dependence on the (illegal) actions of the citizenry in order to ensure civil security. The paper suggests that urban intervention is coproduced by state and nonstate actors at the margins of the state and that urban transformation entails subject formation, in this case that of political youth. Following Hansen and Verkaaik's (2009) argument that the city is essentially multilayered and unknowable, I argue that urban life, as well as state‐citizen relations, is indeterminate, and that it is due to this indeterminacy that the students succeeded in transforming a common association between Alteño youth, alcohol consumption and potential criminal conduct into an alternative notion of youth as responsible citizens of the New Bolivia. This conceptualization permits us to understand the urban sphere as a space not only of conflict but also of endurance and hope, and hence as a zone that allows for the imaginative production of the otherwise (Povinelli, 2011).
    August 17, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12157   open full text
  • ‘The law is not for the poor’: Land, law and eviction in Luanda.
    Pétur Waldorff.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. August 01, 2016
    This article investigates how an existing two‐tiered land tenure system creates a hybrid space that blurs, and essentially questions and problematizes the boundaries of the formal/informal divide as presented within Angolan political and legal discourses. It showcases how urban formality and informality exist alongside each other in Luanda and how people take recourse to both formal and informal channels in attempts to secure housing, land tenure and livelihoods in the city. Through case studies, the article describes how small‐scale farmers in Luanda's northern municipality of Cacuaco lost their lands to urban development in 2009–10 and the ensuing circumstances in which formal rights and informal land tenure became intermeshed and ambiguous. As the case studies illustrate, a gap exists between the legal code and practice on the ground. This gap is represented in how Angola's postconflict land strategy, with its forced evictions and demolitions of houses and neighbourhoods, often with little or no compensation, is at odds with the Angolan Land Law, which states that land may only be expropriated by the state or local authorities for specific public use and must be justly compensated.
    August 01, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12155   open full text
  • Participatory slum upgrading as a disjunctive process in Recife, Brazil: Urban coproduction and the absent ground of the city.
    Pieter Vries.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. August 01, 2016
    This article engages with the coproduction of urban space by focusing on a slum upgrading project in Recife, Brazil. It argues that the urban situation is essentially inconsistent, unpredictable and unstable. It documents the history of urban planning in Recife, paying special attention to the coexistence of two different planning traditions, one aimed at what city planners call the informal city, which is participatory, bottom up and democratic, yet susceptible to be corrupted by political clientelism, and another aimed at the formal city, which is ‘strategic’, top down, technocratic and neoliberal. It argues that the informal/formal binary operates as a disjunctive synthesis that separates social actors rather than connecting them and provides the coordinates within which processes of coproduction take place. The disjunctive synthesis renders possible all sorts of fantastic imaginations that both disavow and reveal the missing ground of the city. Community leaders play a central role in the coproduction of urban space and function as the symptom of this absent ground. The article concludes that participatory urban development interventions aiming to curtail the role of community leaders end up as veritable tyrannies of participation, which should be seen as evidence of the disjointed character of planning rather than as forms of effective governmentality.
    August 01, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12156   open full text
  • Engaging communities in managing multiple hazards: Reflections from small islands in North Sulawesi, Indonesia.
    Mercy M.F. Rampengan, Lisa Law, J.C. Gaillard, Agni Klintuni Boedhihartono, Jeffrey Sayer.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 26, 2016
    Participatory methods are a common approach for giving voice to local communities in hazard and disaster research. Drawing on a study that trialled and modified a range of participatory methods in North Sulawesi, eastern Indonesia, this paper reflects on how such methods help document the capacities of small island communities. We assessed capacity from a sustainable livelihoods perspective, identifying the assets that enable villagers to cope with hazards. This overall approach promoted a discourse of strengths and resourcefulness, contrasting with vulnerability and needs‐assessment approaches common to government and non‐governmental organizations, which tend to focus on weaknesses and can sometimes fuel undeliverable expectations of funding. We provide a critical reflection on participatory methods and their significance for researchers, policy makers and funding agencies working with communities in hazard‐prone regions.
    May 26, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12148   open full text
  • Slow dissent and the emotional geographies of resistance.
    Amber Murrey.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 26, 2016
    Anger, grief, regret and shame are some of the myriad ways that people narrate a decade of life along the Chad‐Cameroon Oil Pipeline. These stories reveal a perceptive and collective socio‐political awareness situated within multifaceted emotional geographies of resistance. In spite of resistance narratives, explicit and collective resistance practices remain uncommon. As people struggle and live within composite landscapes of structural violence along the pipeline, particular processes and mechanisms of uneven power influence the tendency for resistance struggles to be slow, impromptu or labour based. In this comparative ethnographic analysis, I consider the political environment that shapes socio‐political emotional ties in Nanga, particularly its socio‐political positioning as ‘the village of the First Lady’. In this case, people in proximate positions vis‐à‐vis the ruling family experience heightened oppression(s) and dispossession(s), at the same time that they report feeling little political recourse. In Kribi, on the other hand, responses to the pipeline can be described as defiant withdrawals, demonstrated through a series of unconnected refusals. Although resistance practices along the pipeline have not been visible or successful in an established sense, emotional geographies of resistance elucidate long‐term struggles to survive (i.e., slow dissent), including the accumulation of a collective emotional consciousness grounded in an awareness of historical patterns of injustice.
    May 26, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12147   open full text
  • Could sand mining be a major threat for the declining endemic Labeobarbus species of Lake Tana, Ethiopia?
    Minwyelet Mingist, Shewit Gebremedhin.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 26, 2016
    Sand and gravel materials are often used in Ethiopia's construction sector. However, the impacts of sand mining on the water body's habitat and biodiversity are not yet considered in the country. In this paper, we study how sand mining activities at Lake Tana and its inflowing rivers affect the environment and spawning grounds of the endemic Labeobarbus species. We measured physico‐chemical parameters in‐situ and developed structured questionnaires to collect primary data on the fishery and sand mining. We found significant differences in conductivity, total dissolved solids and temperature among sampling sites (P < 0.05). Majority (>90 per cent) of the respondents confirmed the drastic physical changes in the rivers and a severe decline in fish production. The study revealed that the ecology of the mined rivers was seriously affected by sand mining, which interfered with migratory routes of fishes and resulted in loss of their spawning grounds. The unregulated sand mining also conflicted with the interests of the fisheries management and environment. Thus, urgent policy intervention is needed to protect the ever‐declining Labeobarbus species of Lake Tana and the environment.
    May 26, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12150   open full text
  • A crack in the facade? Situating Singapore in global flows of electronic waste.
    Josh Lepawsky, Creighton Connolly.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 26, 2016
    Singapore is alleged to be a key node in global flows of e‐waste prohibited under the Basel Convention. We combine a close reading of the Convention and related documents with findings from nonparticipant observation of and interviews with Singapore‐based traders of discarded electronics. The case offers both important conceptual and empirical findings for future studies of territory in market‐making activity. Conceptually, our research suggests that it may be analytically useful in such studies to conceptualize territory without presupposing that it is generated as a result of separate domains or logics such as ‘the political’ or ‘the economic’. Empirically, we find that the regulatory framework of the Convention, combined with the action of traders based in Singapore, generates a territorialization of the city‐state such that it operates as a crack in the regulatory edifice of the Convention, even as Singapore lawfully fulfils its obligations to it. Moreover, allegations premised on the role of Singapore as a facilitator of global e‐waste dumping misrepresent its crucial role as a conduit of electronic equipment for the significant reuse markets elsewhere in Southeast Asia and beyond. The case indicates that the allegations against Singapore hinge on the city‐state being territorialized as a ‘developing country’.
    May 26, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12149   open full text
  • ‘They are stealing my island’: Residents’ opinions on foreign investment in the residential tourism industry in Tamarin, Mauritius.
    Tessa Wortman, Ronnie Donaldson, Guus Westen.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 26, 2016
    The small nation of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean, once a poor sugar plantation island, has successfully diversified and expanded its economy since independence, by attracting foreign investment in manufacturing and modern service industries. Tourism is a major part of the ‘Mauritian Miracle’; in recent years residential tourism—attracting wealthy foreigners to take up semi‐permanent residence—has become a growth industry transforming coastal areas like Tamarin. Based on in‐depth interviews among 17 residents of Tamarin, this paper looks at how local people perceive the changes residential tourism is causing in the local area. It appears that while the majority is positive about economic changes like more jobs and income opportunities, and to some extent about improvements in infrastructure and services, there are growing misgivings about some of the social impacts. Notably, the increasing scarcity of land and rising house prices are making it impossible for growing numbers of local people to afford a place to live, resulting in growing squatter settlements in the area. Such growing social disparities challenge the Mauritian development model and may undermine its stability. These undesirable effects call for careful management of tourism development, incorporation of sustainability standards and attention to the position of major stakeholder groups, such as local residents.
    May 26, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12151   open full text
  • Bringing globalization to the countryside: Special Economic Zones in India.
    Mohammad Amir Anwar, Pádraig Carmody.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 26, 2016
    Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are important vectors of neoliberal globalization in India. Despite facing widespread resistance against the proposed land acquisition for these zones, they are still being promoted across the country. We argue that the wealth redistribution to the country's elites and the fractured resistance movements enable neoliberalism and its practices to grow in the countryside. Using a private sector SEZ in Gurgaon as a case study, this article explores how special economic zoning, as a neoliberal policy, has been implicated in the spatialized production of poverty. We also show that the main actors who promote neoliberalism in India (the state and the large‐scale urban private sector) have found a seemingly unlikely ally in rural India in the form of farmers with large landholdings, rural elites who are willing to let go of their land under certain conditions. The data for the article was collected in India in 2009–10.
    May 26, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12146   open full text
  • Firm entry modes and Chinese business networks: Malaysian investments in Vietnam.
    Guanie Lim.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. March 04, 2016
    This paper examines the Malaysian Chinese firms that have expanded into Vietnam. Based on research and qualitative personal interviews with Malaysian Chinese firms that have invested in Vietnam, the paper unpacks the entry modes that these firms have undertaken. It argues that the Malaysian Chinese firms prefer joint ventures in their Vietnamese businesses to wholly‐owned subsidiaries and personal direct investments. This paper also argues that such investments are often embedded in social and intraethnic ties, which connect Malaysian Chinese firms with Vietnam's ethnic Chinese businessmen. To this end, these firms tend to rely on informal ties and nonmarket institutions in the form of the ethnic Chinese business networks. Nevertheless, the Malaysian Chinese firms are not averse to collaborating with nonethnic Chinese firms that enjoy a good relationship with the Vietnamese state. This observation is especially marked in the property and construction, and finance sectors.
    March 04, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12133   open full text
  • Smell this: Singapore's curry day and visceral citizenship.
    Jean Michel Montsion, Serene K. Tan.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. February 29, 2016
    In August 2011, many Singaporean citizens grabbed their cooking pots and used the city‐state's national obsession with food to express growing dissatisfaction with immigration and integration trends. The ‘cook and share a pot of curry’ event—a local response to Chinese newcomers complaining about the smell of their Indian Singaporean neighbours’ food—is significant for its use of smell to catalyse a collective citizen reaction and for its reliance on contemporary social media. By analysing this event, we intend to (1) conceptualize the role of smell and viscera in framing citizenship; (2) understand how smells shed light on the city‐state's contemporary ethnic politics and sense of national identity; and (3) reframe the significance of curry day as an expression of visceral citizenship that complements how the state frames Singaporean citizenry. We maintain that curry day sheds light on a specific dimension of Singaporean citizenship, as it uses smell, viscera and embodied activism to mobilize against rationalistic state‐defined distinctions between local and international concerns, economic objectives and social cohesion, inter‐racial harmony and national identity.
    February 29, 2016   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12143   open full text
  • Is flooding in South Asia getting worse and more frequent?
    Vishwas S. Kale.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 21, 2014
    South Asia is drained by some of the most flood‐prone rivers in the world. Flooding during the monsoon season is the most recurring, widespread and disastrous natural hazard in South Asia that results in enormous social, economic and environment consequences every year. Several massive floods have occurred in the recent decades causing huge economic losses and human suffering. On average, the total damage is close to USD 1 billion annually. To answer the question whether flooding in South Asia is getting worse and more frequent, all available data were considered: the annual peak discharge data for major rivers, post‐1985 information on floods from the global archive of large floods and palaeoflood records from nine Indian rivers. According to the global archive data, 372 large and 55 extreme flood events have occurred since 1985. Although there is no significant trend, all types of data point to clustering of large floods. Palaeoflood records show that modern floods (post‐1950) have higher flood levels than the late Holocene floods. Notwithstanding the limitations of data, there is enough evidence to conclude that (1) incidences of flood‐generating extreme rainfall event are rising and (2) human interventions have made the recent floods more destructive.
    May 21, 2014   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12060   open full text
  • The political economy and geopolitical context of India's economic crisis, 1990–91.
    Waquar Ahmed.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 21, 2014
    The Indian economy suffered a balance of payment crisis in 1991, which provided the context for the rolling out of neoliberal policies, also referred to as the New Economic Policy in India. This paper examines the national and global causes and context of India's economic crisis and adoption of neoliberal policies. While grounding my analysis in historical‐geographical materialism, I argue that India's economic crisis was a product of certain contingent conditions. I draw attention to India's pre‐neoliberal economic regime and analyse how the earlier‐established relationship between revenue generation and expenditure ran into trouble; what changes occurred in the organization and management of revenues and capital; nature of interventions of the state in the circulation of capital; changes in the physical aspects of circulation of commodities, together with foreign trade and the formation of the ‘world market’; and the rise of the United States as the only global superpower. I conclude that India's economic crisis of 1990–91, and the neoliberal policies that followed, are products of contingent historical and geographical conditions. A teleological approach towards examining global capitalism and production of economic crisis often neglect such contingencies and provide a set of causalities that may, at best, be classified as incomplete.
    May 21, 2014   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12061   open full text
  • Lacan on urban development and national identity in a global city: Integrated Resorts in Singapore.
    Nathan F. Bullock.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. May 21, 2014
    Lacanian psychoanalysis has been used in film, literature and other areas of social thought, but rarely in the domain of urban studies and human/cultural geography. Following its introduction by urban planners Michael Gunder and Jean Hillier, I apply the theory of the four discourses and the mirror stage of development to Singapore's urban development of the two Integrated Resorts at Marina Bay and Sentosa. The decision to allow gambling and build casinos was a contentious one and provides a point of departure for insight into the identity issues and planning decision making processes in Singapore. I critically analyse the rhetoric of the public debate from 2004–2005 to draw conclusions about the government's self‐perception of Singapore as a city‐state and the manifestation of this identity through the creation of cosmopolitan spaces as an attempt to project that identity onto its citizens. The aim of Lacanian psychoanalysis is to provide an understanding and recognition by analysis to enable a change of signifiers, values and ideology among the masters and the subjects to better represent the true needs and wants of the community. This reflective position enables a movement toward postcolonial urban studies and planning.
    May 21, 2014   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12062   open full text
  • Monaco with bananas, a tropical Manhattan, or a Singapore for Central America? Explaining rapid urban growth in Panama City, Panama.
    Thomas J. Sigler.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. April 15, 2014
    The built environment of Panama City, Panama, has undergone a transformative change over the past decade. Hundreds of high‐rise residential towers have sprung up in and around its central business district, eliciting comparisons with Singapore, New York and Dubai insofar as journalists, real estate boosters and politicians have associated the increase in tall buildings with a commensurate increase in global status. Concurrently, on the urban periphery, scores of uniform housing estates have been erected to house an upwardly mobile middle class. Triggered by the handover of the Panama Canal and the surrounding Canal Zone in 1999, the city's pronounced building boom has corresponded with the highest rates of economic growth in Latin America. This paper examines the complex factors behind the recent transformation of Panama City from a historical‐morphological perspective. While the drivers of demand for real property were primarily global, the determinants of supply have been highly localized, suggesting that the interface between the global and the local is a fundamental catalyst of changes in the urban landscape.
    April 15, 2014   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12058   open full text
  • Doors and fences: Controlling Indonesia's porous borders and policing asylum seekers.
    Antje Missbach.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. April 15, 2014
    Although the partial outsourcing of state border control to non‐state actors is not a new phenomenon, Indonesia is an interesting case study. Border control in an archipelago consisting of more than 17 000 islands is particularly challenging for state authorities. In addition to contending with the exceptional geography, Indonesia's state authorities are also challenged by the political constellation with Australia in regard to irregular cross‐border movements of asylum seekers that has become a controversial issue in recent history. As an important transit country for asylum seekers and refugees en route to Australia, Indonesia's porous borders have rendered it possible to enter and exit the country relatively easily. Given Australia's political pressure and the financial incentives offered to Indonesia to act as a ‘final bulwark’ and control irregular migration flows more effectively, border control nowadays has gained more significance in Indonesia than in the past. Yet, financial constraints and, more importantly, a lack of political will to host asylum seekers in its own territories for the long term remain as obstacles. Fieldwork observations show that due to ongoing funding restrictions for state‐led border control, state‐society cooperation for border surveillance has increased. Civilians in many hotspots for irregular border crossings have been encouraged to report on ‘suspicious foreigners’. State‐society cooperation for border control, however, offers new opportunities for people smugglers to pay off civilian spies or corrupt border authorities.
    April 15, 2014   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12059   open full text
  • Strategic coupling in ‘next wave cities’: Local institutional actors and the offshore service sector in the Philippines.
    Jana Maria Kleibert.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. November 21, 2013
    The outsourcing and offshoring of services to developing countries has created new opportunities for economic development for countries in the global South. This paper looks at the scope for agency of local institutional actors in the investment attraction of business process outsourcing companies. Drawing on empirical work from the Philippines, an analysis of the process of integrating lower‐tier cities into global service production networks is presented. Specifically, the roles of local institutional actors in facilitating FDI attraction and strategically coupling local assets with the needs of multinational service corporations are discussed. Two contrasting cases, the cities of Baguio and Bacolod, show that considerable scope for intervention rests with local institutional actors. The findings have implications for policymaking and research concerned with the newest phase of outsourcing and offshoring in developing countries.
    November 21, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12044   open full text
  • ‘Here, we don't just trade goods, we also “sell” people's lives’: Sari‐sari stores as nodes of partial surveillance in a Philippine fishing community.
    Nelson Turgo.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 25, 2013
    Home‐based neighbourhood stores (locally known in the Philippines as sari‐sari stores) are a ubiquitous feature of most Philippine communities. They are small to medium‐size trade stores not unlike convenience stores in the West where people buy goods in small quantities. In the Philippines, these stores play a vital role in providing everyday economic sustenance to low‐income communities. But more than an economic hub, sari‐sari stores also function as a social hub that connects people and acts as eyes and ears of the community through the people who make use of their services. In a sense, sari‐sari stores are the community's ‘myopticon’ where people's day‐to‐day dealings with everyone in the community and its environs are reported and discursively brought under the gaze of the ‘entire community’. Being myopticon as opposed to Foucault's panopticon, surveillance in sari‐sari stores is partial, non‐hierarchicalized and could be resisted by people in the community. Nonetheless, regardless of the ‘myoptic’ features of sari‐sari stores, their presence in the community ‘interpellates’ everyone's daily existence and instantiates a discursive space from which a structure of informal social control is enacted among community members. Sari‐sari stores then are an important reminder of how our built environment is also about contestation and negotiation of everyday life as we make use of space and as the architectonics of space both constrain and empower our manoeuvring in places.
    July 25, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12033   open full text
  • The Transnational Assembling of Marina Bay, Singapore.
    Erica X.Y. Yap.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 15, 2013
    From Shanghai's Pudong to Dubai's Marina, waterfront developments are increasingly popular urban forms worldwide. Drawing on the literature on urban assemblages, I explore how urban waterfronts are produced out of the transnational assembling of models, knowledge and expertise. My case study here is Marina Bay, Singapore, a landscape that like much of the rest of Singapore is a product of talent and ideas from elsewhere. In this paper, two strategies employed by Singapore's urban authorities to court global expertise for Marina Bay's development are examined – their formation of an international panel of experts in the fields of urban planning, policy and design, and their launching of international competitions to attract top design firms. Like transfer agents that enable policies to travel, I argue that these individuals and firms are situated within wider knowledge circuits that straddle the globe, and are thus well placed to filter and channel ideas from elsewhere to Singapore. Drawing on selected developments within Marina Bay, I trace the routes taken by these ideas, the changes they underwent as they travelled, as well as their relationships with the actors that facilitated their journeys. In doing so, I hope to demonstrate the usefulness of understanding the urban as more‐than‐territorial in both theory and practice.
    July 15, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12032   open full text
  • Reading Lanyu's tourism landscape: Hybridity and identity on Orchid Island, Taiwan.
    Ethan Yorgason, Hsia Li Ming.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    This article analyses the creation and implications for cultural identity of a hybrid tourism landscape on Taiwan's Orchid Island (Lanyu). It particularly argues that Lanyu's native Tao people have begun to gain a somewhat stronger cultural identity and autonomy through this landscape. Orchid Island underwent rapid modernization within the past 60 years. The article not only shows how tourism was imposed by Taiwan's government, but also how the Tao have made greater use of tourism's landscape over time for their own purposes. Not without sociocultural problems and contradictions, Lanyu's tourism landscape has been polysemic enough to allow for gradually improving relationships between Taiwanese and Tao and for gradually increasing Tao participation in modernity on their own terms.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12023   open full text
  • Loose threads: The translocal making of public space policy in Hanoi.
    Ola Söderström, Stephanie Geertman.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    This paper analyses the recent developments in public space policy in the city of Hanoi, Vietnam. It has three aims. The first is to look at a potentially progressive urban policy in contrast to most work on ‘policies in motion’ that has primarily been concerned with neoliberal policies. The second is to put the process of public space policymaking in Hanoi in historical and cultural perspective. We therefore describe public space in Hanoi as historically constituted by different layers of meaning and physical urban patterns. The paper's third aim is to analyse the translocal connections involved in a policy that is still in the making, and therefore characterized by a series of ‘loose threads’. We show how different types of connections – policy mobility, topological relations and inter‐referencing – relate Hanoi to multiple locales elsewhere. The conclusion reflects on the ‘politics of reception’ showing how analysing a policy in the making develops a critical analysis of policies in motion.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12027   open full text
  • Trading in the dark – The medicinal plants production network in Uttarakhand.
    Tim Pauls, Martin Franz.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    Medicinal plant cultivation and gathering can play a vital role in the course of livelihood diversification for the marginalized population living in remote areas. However, this requires an integration of the respective production networks that allows the producers a fair and reliable income and does not endanger rare plant species. This paper analyses the situation within the Indian state of Uttarakhand, and identifies structures and entities hindering medical plant cultivation and its potentials. Based on the broad network understanding of the Global Production Network approach, the case study focuses on the middlemen and their hidden embeddedness. It shows how governmental organizations and in particular non‐governmental organizations and farmers' institutions can help to overcome clandestine structures of illegal trade and contribute towards a redesign of the medicinal plant network in a more equitable and transparent way.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12026   open full text
  • Landforms and landscape evolution in the Mylliem Granite Area, Meghalaya Plateau, Northeast India.
    Piotr Migoń, Paweł Prokop.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    The Mylliem granite is one of many igneous bodies within the basement complex of the Meghalaya Plateau, northeast India. Although relatively small in size at c. 90 km2, it is very diverse geomorphologically and shows a range of distinctive landscapes within its limits. Relict flat watershed ridges and topographic basins characterize the northern and eastern part of the pluton, whereas to the southwest the relief becomes higher, with steeper hillslopes and deeply incised valleys. Deep weathering and thick saprolites are abundant, as are residual landforms resulting from stripping of the saprolite: domes, tors and boulders. The major reason behind the diversity of granite landscape of the Mylliem pluton is the progress of headward erosion, initiated at the Dauki fault in the south of the Meghalaya. Headward erosion enhances local relief and hence, weathering systems. Multi‐concave morphology is gradually transformed into multi‐convex one, which is hypothesized to be the specific mode of plateau evolution and scarp retreat in granite bedrock.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12025   open full text
  • Unravelling property relations around forest carbon.
    Sango Mahanty, Wolfram Dressler, Sarah Milne, Colin Filer.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    Market‐based interventions to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) enable the carbon stored in land and forests to be traded as a new and intangible form of property. Using examples from Cambodia, the Philippines and Papua New Guinea, we examine the property negotiations underpinning this new forest carbon economy. We show that the institutions and land use negotiations needed to ‘produce’ forest carbon interact recursively with existing property claims over land and forests. Even where customary rights are formally recognized (PNG, Philippines), claims to forest carbon are still complicated by ambiguities and complexities surrounding rights to forested land. Meanwhile the new value attached to forest carbon can stimulate efforts to appropriate land and forest resources associated with it, creating new power relations and property dynamics. This interplay between forest carbon and underlying contested property claims in rural forest settings creates an unstable basis for forest carbon markets and raises questions about future access to forested land.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12024   open full text
  • Contested identities of indigenous people: Indigenization or integration of the Veddas in Sri Lanka.
    Chamila T. Attanapola, Ragnhild Lund.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    Traditionally, the identity of indigenous people was defined in relation to closeness to nature and use of wildlife resources. Such an identity has been put under pressure due to development programmes, neo‐liberal policies and increasing market economy, forcing these people to redefine their identity within new socio‐economic and geopolitical contexts. Based on ethnographic research, the situation of the Vedda people in Sri Lanka is analysed. First, we unravel how they define their identity through a ‘meaningful relationship’ with the place in which they used to live prior to their displacement because of a large scale development project. Second, we analyse how the Veddas (re‐)negotiate their identity in a context of limited access to land, lack of education, unemployment, and an increasing demand for indigenous tourism. It is found that the Veddas redefine their identity by pursuing two survival strategies: tourist development and re‐indigenization, and integration into mainstream Sinhalese society. Both strategies pose challenges and opportunities.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12022   open full text
  • The end of the Pacific? Effects of sea level rise on Pacific Island livelihoods.
    Patrick D. Nunn.
    Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography. July 05, 2013
    As in the past, most Pacific Island people live today along island coasts and subsist largely on foods available both onshore and offshore. On at least two occasions in the 3500 years that Pacific Islands have been settled, sea level changes affected coastal bioproductivity to the extent that island societies were transformed in consequence. Over the past 200 years, sea level has been rising along most Pacific Island coasts causing loss of productive land through direct inundation (flooding), shoreline erosion and groundwater salinization. Responses have been largely uninformed, many unsuccessful. By the year 2100, sea level may be 1.2 m higher than today. Together with other climate‐linked changes and unsustainable human pressures on coastal zones, this will pose huge challenges for livelihoods. There is an urgent need for effective and sustainable adaptation of livelihoods to prepare for future sea level rise in the Pacific Islands region. There are also lessons to be learned from past failures, including the need for adaptive solutions that are environmentally and culturally appropriate, and those which appropriate decision makers are empowered to design and implement. Around the middle of the twenty‐first century, traditional coastal livelihoods are likely to be difficult to sustain, so people in the region will need alternative food production systems. Within the next 20–30 years, it is likely that many coastal settlements will need to be relocated, partly or wholly. There are advantages in anticipating these needs and planning for them sooner rather than later. In many ways, the historical and modern Pacific will end within the next few decades. There will be fundamental irreversible changes in island geography, settlement patterns, subsistence systems, societies and economic development, forced by sea level rise and other factors.
    July 05, 2013   doi: 10.1111/sjtg.12021   open full text