RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS

This issue brief - the second in Stimson's "Letters from the Mekong" series - examines the current status of mitigation efforts at Laos' Xayaburi and Don Sahong dam projects and the relevance of the existing narrative surrounding hydropower development on the river's mainstream. READ MORE

The decision by the National Assembly of Laos to approve the concession for the Don Sahong Dam has reignited concerns and criticism of the current development model, which includes 11 large dams on the mainstream of the Mekong River. READ MORE

August 13 dawned in Myanmar with the news that Shwe Mann - chairman of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and Speaker of Myanmar's Parliament - had been unexpectedly removed from his party leadership position. READ MORE

Debates over whether sovereignty trumps moral responsibility towards refugees has taken on new urgency in Southeast Asia, as Thailand’s crackdown on human trafficking pushes traffickers to reroute thousands of migrants and refugees out to sea. READ MORE

Laos’ controversial decision to move forward with the Xayaburi and Don Sahong dams on the mainstream of the Lower Mekong has become the focal point of discussion between various stakeholders due to concerns over the impacts on fisheries and sediment. READ MORE

Courtney Weatherby, Research Associate, along with Richard Cronin, Director of the Southeast Asia program, were recently given rare access to dams being built in Laos to examine their potential impact on food security in the region. READ MORE

This is the second in a two-part series of Spotlights documenting Stimson Research Associate Courtney Weatherby’s travel to the Mekong River basin in Southeast Asia. READ MORE

This is the first in a two-part series of Spotlights documenting Stimson Research Associate Courtney Weatherby’s travel to Mekong River basin in Southeast Asia. READ MORE

This executive summary of the second Letters from the Mekong issue brief examines the current status of mitigation efforts at Laos’ Xayaburi and Don Sahong dam projects on the mainstream of the lower Mekong River.  READ MORE

Renewed fighting in Myanmar’s Mon and Karen States between factions of the Karen resistance and the Burmese military broke out in late September 2014, posing a new challenge to the already-foundering nationwide ceasefire negotiations. READ MORE

The determination of Laos to go ahead with the construction of two mainstream dams on the Mekong River despite the strong objections of Vietnam and Cambodia is testing the strength and effectiveness of the Mekong River Commission (MRC), established to coordinate the environmentally sustainable and equitable development of the Lower Mekong. READ MORE

Pressure from governments and commercial developers to build dams on the mainstream of the Lower Mekong is increasingly threatening to marginalize the Mekong River Commission (MRC), which is the sole regional organization that addresses water governance and coordination. READ MORE

October 8, 2014 | Issue Brief

This issue brief, the first in a new series of “Letters from the Mekong,” discusses the current status of hydropower planning, development, cooperation and decision-making in the Mekong Basin. READ MORE

Illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing impose huge economic costs on Indonesia. To combat this challenge, Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has made a much-needed connection between management of ocean resources and his country’s security through publicly endorsing a “Global Maritime Nexus” doctrine in late 2014. READ MORE

Hazardous levels of haze from Indonesian forest fires have become an annual occurrence for neighboring Southeast Asian countries. El Nino weather patterns like the one currently prevailing in Southeast Asia greatly exacerbate the problem by sweeping the haze into neighboring countries, especially Malaysia and Singapore. READ MORE