Sunday 19th of November 2017

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Getting By or Getting Ahead: Resettlement Inputs and Social Capital in Involuntary Resettlement

Melissa Quetulio-Navarra1, Roger Zetter2, Anke Niehof3 and Feng Zhao4


This study goes beyond the conventional evaluative measurement of involuntary resettlement impacts by utilizing the institutions interventions perspective and social capital theory as tools for understanding the extent to which resettled populations in the Philippines and Indonesia are able to restore their socio-economic well-being. The paper outlines how the interplay between the resettlement inputs and social capital changed from the first year in the relocation site to several years later and how the changes provide evidence of the evolving well-being of the households. The cases examined in the study reveal that resettlement inputs and social capital work hand in hand in fostering improvement in the households’ living conditions. The research also demonstrates that the value and relevance of household social ties could be context-specific. While the Philippine case presents a ‘getting by’ picture of households’ well-being, the Indonesian case illustrates a combination of ‘getting by’ and ‘getting ahead’.


Keywords: Involuntary resettlement; well-being; social capital; resettlement inputs; Philippines; Indonesia


1 Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands and Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor, Manila, The Philippines. Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

2 University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom

3 Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands

4 Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing, China





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