KWRRI Research Reports


The focus of this paper is on the question of how rural people anticipate forced moves as a result of flood control projects and how they change their life in accepting separation from familiar surroundings.

A model of faced migration is presented which sees the variables of socioeconomic status, knowledge of reservoir projects, vested interests and the degree of identification with place of affected persons as producing differential apprehension over moving. Differential apprehension is then seen as producing different attitudes toward the project which will influence the type of migration plans.

To test this model of forced migration, data were obtained by means of personal interview with 261 adults located in two areas about to be flooded by multipurpose reservoirs. Goodman and Kruskal 's gamma was used as the measure of association for the ordinal data.

Basic to the model were the two findings that (1) apprehension over moving relates inversely with people's willingness to separate themselves from their current friends and homes, and (2) that people with favorable attitudes toward flood control projects were less apprehensive over moving and as a consequence were more willing to engage in moves that require greater degrees of separation from their current friends and types of residences.

Other findings suggest that those persons whose vested interests would be enhanced by the reservoir project can be expected to engage in moves requiring the greatest amounts of social separation. Knowledge of the reservoir project and its purposes did little to meliorate people's attitudes toward the reservoir project or to facilitate ease of moving. A new variable "identification with place," developed for this study, was found to relate strongly with apprehension over moving.

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The work upon which this report is based was supported in part by funds provided by the United States Department of the Interior, Office of Water Resources Research, as authorized under the Water Resources Research Act of 1964.