Prayong Doklamyai

Ashoka Fellow
Fellow Since 2010
Northern Development Foundation


This profile was prepared when Prayong Doklamyai was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2010.
The New Idea
Prayong has turned land reform into a tangible policy option and finally, a debate with a positive outcome. Working with nationwide landless farmer’s networks, he has been able to offer Thailand’s first working examples of communal land ownership, which he calls “community land title.” Unlike government land handouts, the community land title protects arable land from private buy-outs through a system of financial disincentives, improvements on agricultural production, and other community-building mechanisms.

Prior to Prayong’s efforts, the issue of land tenure insecurity has been portrayed as disparate circumstances and addressed, if at all, by disparate short-term government measures—such as land handouts, debt annulment, and temporary delays in arresting illegal tenants. The community land title, in contrast, offers long-term security for farmers’ land and livelihood. In its pilot stage in nine locations, the community land title is already providing tenure security and income improvement for almost a thousand farming households. Farmer groups as well as the National Land Reform Committee are studying the pilot projects in order to develop Prayong’s approach into a national-scale operation.

Ratified by the national presidential cabinet, and now in its last stage of legal endorsement, the community land title is a rare example of Thai policymaking, driven to the national sphere by tens of thousands of grassroots communities.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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