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Saidi A, Rahmani B, Ghaffari rad R. Spatial Analysis of Structural-Functional Changes of Rural Settlements as a result of Construction and Utilization of Reservoir Dam and Irrigation Network (Case Study: Alavian Dam and Irrigation Network in East Azarbaijan Province). Journal of Spatial Analysis Environmental Hazards 2021; 7 (4) :41-64
URL: http://jsaeh.khu.ac.ir/article-1-3111-en.html
1- Department of Human Geography, Faculty of Earth Sciences, University of Shahid Beheshti, Tehran, Iran. , abbsaidi@gmail.com
2- Department of Human Geography, Faculty of Earth Sciences, University of Shahid Beheshti, Tehran, Iran.
Abstract:   (2920 Views)
Spatial planning as an alternative approach to sustainable development in geographical knowledge is based on a proper and appropriate understanding of space as a systematic phenomenon that has a fundamental role in guiding society towards the principles of sustainable development such that social and economic development and Improving the quality of life of each region depends on its spatial planning system.
The construction of dams is considered to be an interventionist measure in the environmental system, which may lead to positive or negative impacts. While these impacts can be recognized directly in all elements and phenomena that are related to the geographical space, they play an important role in the process of spatial development and "production of space". This article questions to what extent the construction of the Alavian dam affects the integrated spatial reorganization of rural settlements.
To investigate this, the Alavian reservoir dam in East Azarbaijan province (Iran) has been selected as a case study. The construction of the dam and the Alavian drainage network in the Maragheh and Bonab areas began in 1990 and ended in 1995 aiming to provide drinking, agricultural and industrial water as well as flood control. We hypothesized that the implementation of this project has caused a wide change in the structural and functional status of the spatial system as well as the changes in the environmental, socio-cultural and economy of the human settlements located at the margin of the reservoir. We studied such structural/functional changes in the spatial system of the Alavian dam and its irrigation network. It is presumed that "the role of the construction and Utilization of the dam and irrigation networks" has a great impact on "developments of the spatial system of rural settlements", mostly in social, economic and environmental.
In summary, we offer the following hypotheses:
  • In terms of segmentation, the top-down approach and structural approach, implementation and exploitation of the dam and Alavian irrigation network have not changed the spatial system of rural settlements within the scope of the project.
  • Spatial performance due to the construction of the dam and the Alavian irrigation network is different in structural and functional changes of the spatial system of rural settlements according to their dispersal and spatial distribution.
In this study, a descriptive-analytical method was used based on a comparative strategy. Within the framework of structural-functional scanning theory, four main criteria with 40 related indicators were selected to study the effects of reservoir dam construction and the irrigation network on all human settlements located in the geographical scope of the design. These criteria are considered to be the most important structural-functional components that are based on sustainable development.
All data (quantitative and qualitative) required for this research were collected using two methods of library studies and field survey and then analyzed. Data collection tools, including village and household questionnaires, interviews, focus group meetings, observation and field surveys, were collected through all data collection tools. The general questionnaire for all villages (27 villages) was completed in full format. The household size of the samples was calculated using a Cochran method with a confidence level of 95 percent for all 370 households. The household questionnaire was randomly filled out. The questionnaire of villages and households was completed according to the impact of the construction of the Alavian reservoir Dam separately and with a proportional distribution in the upstream and downstream villages.
To analyze the data, normality, correlation, Kruskal-Wallis, Mann-Whitney U and Kendall coefficient were performed using SPSS software.
This study presented an innovative way to evaluate the effects of construction of the dam and irrigation network on the variation of the spatial system of rural settlements in an integrated manner based on spatial paradigm. The findings of this research are the result of collaborative fieldwork to describe the relationship between dam construction and irrigation network and changes in the spatial system of villages. Spatial planning as a new, comprehensive and systematic approach to geographic knowledge can well support the theory of sustainable development. This approach is based on the harmonious and balanced development of the environmental-ecological, socio-cultural, economic and physical conditions of the spatial system.
To sum up, it can be said that observation of the spatial organization of the areas affected by the implementation of the dam and the Alavian irrigation network, as a result of uncompetitive development policies, is indicative of the imbalance and inequality in access to opportunities (such as access to agricultural water, increased agricultural production, increased income, etc.). Accordingly, due to lack of a Integrated and systematic approach based on the principles of spatial planning in the study and implementation of the Alavian Reservoir Dam, is not possible the conditions for positive change in rural settlements. It actually causes disarray, disunity and imbalance of the spatial system of the regions. In other words, is one of the most important reasons for failure of development projects in third world countries, ignoring the dimensions and structural-functional aspects of spatial systems. The project of construction of Alavian reservoir dam and its irrigation network can be a good example of such projects.
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Type of Study: Applicable | Subject: Special
Received: 2020/03/3 | Accepted: 2020/04/7 | Published: 2021/03/13

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