Chapter 10: Involuntary resettlement projects as a frontier of sustainable translocal development
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Kei Otsuki explores translocal effects of the Limpopo National Park in Mozambique by analysing one of the largest conservation-induced resettlement schemes in southern Africa. Despite recurrent calls for avoiding forced displacement, development and conservation projects have been leading to physical displacement of over ten million people every year. With the ongoing normalization of global sustainability and new investment flows that it generates, this number is expected to rise. In this context, involuntary resettlement projects are increasingly justified as a way to establish the “double sustainability”, that is, sustainability of the investment project and sustainability of newly created resettlement areas. However, it remains unclear how sustainability of resettlement areas is ensured and the ideal of double sustainability is achieved. This chapter argues that resettlement projects as the infrastructural outcomes of the promotion of sustainability shape a new frontier that transforms natural and built environment beyond the project area. Drawing on the Limpopo case, it shows that there is an urgent need to shift our attention from framing a resettlement project as a solution for displacement to establishing a new focus on resettlement projects as what start influencing sustainability in multiple locations and contexts, thereby potentially initiating sustainable translocal development.

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