The Uda Walawe Irrigation and Resettlement Project (UWIRP) located in the Southern dry zone of Sri Lanka was initiated in the early 1950s. The original plan for the UWIRP was a highly ambitious social, economic and physical engineering project aimed at creating a modern, profitable agriculture sector. This report examines the history of water resources development and investment decisions for the UWIRP over a period of 50 years and uncovers underlying processes that shaped the evolution of the project and highlights the limitation of viewing development as a mere set of technical and social engineering endeavors.


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