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Workshop Report

THAILAND: Expats in Bangkok Take Action to Improve Water Management in the Region

Who said it takes a lot of resources and people to run a Pyramid workshop and then put the results into practice? A very small group of American expats in Bangkok, Thailand, gathered to discuss water management issues. There was the banker, the businessman, the teacher and the consultant, all committed to taking action to address the challenge at hand.

After a thorough analysis of the situation, they concluded that there was a general lack of awareness regarding water management issues, which in turn led to systemic problems, as illustrated by the recent floods in Bangkok. In order to address this problem, the participants decided to set-up a high-profile collaborative project and use their local networks to generate interest. Their Capstone Agreement was “to work together and meet once per month (minimum) to advance the project and achieve the desired objective”.

And that’s exactly what they have been doing ever since. Here is a recent update on their progress:

“We discussed a few specific projects in general terms, but agreed to meet again to refine the project and focus on a more specific issue. We had or 2nd meeting on 24 March and have scheduled a 3rd meeting for 31 March for another discussion.

Before our next meeting we will be reaching out in our local networks to develop interested in collaboration on a water resource management issue. At this point we are considering a project related to the impact of buildings on water resources. We have considered a drinking water filter installation project for a condominium, a water catchment project for a commercial or residential building. However, in the next meeting we will agree on a specific project and start planning for execution.

The “Thailand Environment Monitor, Integrated Water Resource Management: A Way Forward” report by The World Bank (published in June 2011) was distributed to increase awareness and stimulate thought about potential water management and awareness related projects.

The strategy will be to execute a hands-on project that will have a material impact and generate publicity to increase awareness of the criticality of water resource management locally, regionally, and globally.”

Although they reported some difficulties running the workshop with 4 people, we must say that we are extremely impressed with their outcomes and commitment. As the saying goes: perhaps sometimes… “Less is more”.

Good luck further and may your project be an inspiration to many others around the world!



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