International Development, Community, and Environment

Title

Frontline Narratives on Sustainable Development Challenges/Opportunities in the ‘Illegal’ Gold Mining Region of Madre de Dios, Peru: Informing an Integrative Collaborative Response

Document Type

Article

Abstract

Gold-mining regions like Madre de Dios, Peru, present considerable sustainable development challenges, with opportunities obscured. ‘Illegal’ artisanal miners embody vulnerability: they go un-recognized as stakeholders in formal policy processes, yet hold a major stake in their outcomes. Narratives on development challenges and opportunities from those on the frontline are invaluable for understanding complex socio-ecological issues and crafting responses. Notwithstanding challenges, local people have remarkably constructive visions for a sustainable future. Using a socio-technical transitions conceptual frame and an integrative collaborative practical frame, narrative data and field observations were used to answer: 1) What are the existing relationships amongst actors, and how do these illustrate stakeholder diversity and socio-ecological complexity conundrums? 2) What structural and practical deficiencies in the existing system do narratives reveal, and – pointedly - what visions do local people have for development? 3) What kind of integrative collaborative sustainable development process is called for in this context, and what capacities need building? Local actors – including ‘illegal’ miners – express the need to: constructively engage with diverse actors; integrate knowledge types; develop long-, medium-, and short-term goals; carefully consider spatial scale; and increase socio-technical capacity. Findings offer insights for re-conceptualizing artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) formalization processes.

Publication Title

Extractive Industries and Society

Publication Date

4-1-2019

Volume

6

Issue

2

First Page

552

Last Page

561

ISSN

2214-790X

DOI

10.1016/j.exis.2019.01.005

Keywords

artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM), formalization, Peru, sustainable development

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