The Functional Role of Balinese Water Temples: A Response to Critics

  title={The Functional Role of Balinese Water Temples: A Response to Critics},
  author={J. Stephen Lansing and Th{\'e}r{\`e}se A. de Vet},
  journal={Human Ecology},
In earlier publications we have proposed a model to explain the functional role of water temple networks in the agro-ecology of wet rice irrigation on the island of Bali. We argued that the key ecological effects of temple networks are best understood as emergent properties of a complex adaptive system. This argument implies that important aspects of the temple system are largely opaque from the perspective of conventional social science. We proposed that the Green Revolution created a real… 


This research investigates the tenacity of the villagers of Geriana Kauh in the Regency of Karangasem, Bali in preserving their culture and nature. Balinese are facing immediate threats due to

The Enchantment of Agriculture: State Decentering and Irrigated Rice Production in Bali

This article explores state involvement in the ‘enchanted’ aspects of irrigated rice production in Bali, Indonesia. Modernising states invariably forward what Max Weber called the rationalisation and

Adaptive self-organization of Bali’s ancient rice terraces

An evolutionary game is proposed, based on local farmers’ decisions that predicts specific power laws in spatial patterning that are seen in a multispectral image analysis of Balinese rice terraces, which triggers a transition from local to global-scale control of water shortages and rice pests.

Re-examining balinese subaks through the lens of cultural multilevel selection

Evidence from the literature and hypothetical scenarios are used to show how the CMLS framework can be used to understand the emergence and persistence of sustainable social–ecological systems and outline cultural transmission mechanisms that can explain the spread of group-beneficial traits in Bali.

Subak, a Nature-based Solutions Evidence from Indonesia

Subak, an inherited communal water management in the agricultural system for centuries in Bali Island – Indonesia, has been widely known as a UNESCO World Heritage Culture since 2012. Subak’s

Averting Evolutionary Suicide from the Tragedy of the Commons

In a tragedy of the commons, individual competition over a resource can reduce the resource itself, and thus reduce the fitness of the whole group. An extreme example is evolutionary suicide, which

The Role of Archaeological Remains in Water Sources Traditional Conservation

Archaeological remains can be found everywhere. The archaeological remains in Pelaga and Belok Sidan Village, Badung Regency, Bali found in several temples and near water sources. The villagers

Acts of citizenship? rulers and ruled in traditional Bali

ABSTRACT Recent understandings of indigenous leadership and governance have reframed earlier dualistic depictions of precolonial Balinese governance in terms of despotic kingship on the one hand and

Local Wisdom Of Subak As A Model Of Character Building For Social Studies Learning In Schools

This study aimed to trace back any character values contained in local wisdom of the Balinese traditional irrigation system called Subak and to construct it as a model of character building for


This paper explores the community capital (CC) of participatory maps and discusses their potential to stimulate community engagement, particularly for the conservation of cultural heritage. Surveys



Niche construction on Bali: the gods of the countryside

  • J. LansingK. M. Fox
  • Economics
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2011
The creation of the engineered landscape of Balinese rice terraces offers a test case to investigate whether this phenomenon emerged historically from trial and error by generations of farmers, or alternatively was designed by Bali's rulers.

On Modeling Balinese Water Temple Networks as Complex Adaptive Systems

adaptive systems has enabled him to develop a computer simulation model that represents the likely evolution of cooperative networks of Balinese rice farmers.2 Lansing attributes both theoretical and

The Precolonial Balinese State Reconsidered

The social organization of irrigation agriculture is an important part of many theories of the origin of the state. Ever since Marx described the organization and control of irrigation agriculture as

Land Donations and the Gift of Water. On Temple Landlordism and Irrigation Agriculture in Pre-Colonial Bali

From a socio-political and economic perspective the implications of this form of temple landlordism and its combination with ritual water control, particularly for the peasants and the portion of their annual surplus that they were obliged to deliver to this temple are explored.

A DNA signature for the expansion of irrigation in Bali

Non‐coding regions of DNA with rapid mutation rates are utilized to analyze changes in social structure associated with the historical development of wet‐rice farming on the Indonesian island of Bali.

Priests and Programmers: Technologies of Power in the Engineered Landscape of Bali

For the Balinese, the whole of nature is a perpetual resource: through centuries of carefully directed labor by generations of farmers, the engineered landscape of the island's rice terraces has

Dams and Dynasty, and the Colonial Transformation of Balinese Irrigation Management

This article takes issue with Stephen Lansing’s bottom-up model of Balinese irrigation management and argues that in pre-colonial days large scale irrigation depended largely on dynastic involvement.

Cooperation, Games, and Ecological Feedback: Some Insights from Bali1

For centuries Balinese rice farmers have been engaged in cooperative agricultural practices (Christie 1992; Scarborough, Schoenfelder, and Lansing 1999, 2000). This remarkable achievement in

Balinese Babad as historical sources - a reinterpretation of the fall of Gelgel

Towards the end of the seventeenth century, the centralized Balinese kingdom of G?lg?l, which according to Balinese tradition had held sway since the fourteenth century, was overthrown. It was

Water and rice in early Java and Bali.

The management of water has deep historica1 roots in island Southeast Asia. The oldest manifestation of agricultural water management in the maritime region appears to have taken the form of