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Power dynamics and natural resources

Archived dossier

Resource-related disputes do not occur in isolation, but are interconnected with the global trade system and often grounded in other structural socioeconomic, cultural and ethnic inequalities. They arise because actors’ interests in natural resources are often incompatible. Specific interests (mainly national economic interests) are often given primacy at the expense of others (for example, local wellbeing).

The Broker’s ‘Power dynamics and natural resources’ dossier has been produced in cooperation with the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research – WOTRO Science for Development (‘NWO-WOTRO’) programme, ‘Conflict and Cooperation over Natural Resources in Developing Countries (CoCooN)’. It aims to unravel the power dynamics underlying both ‘open’ and ‘hidden’ conflicts over natural resources, and to identify clear policy recommendations for policymakers and practitioners in the field.

The dossier contains five case-study articles provided by CoCooN researchers, and an analytical overview of these case studies by The Broker. These articles be found in the left column of this dossier page.

Together with these case studies, we have launched a debate on the topic, which you can find in the centre column of the dossier page. We call on our readers to further examine the main question addressed by the dossier: What are the power dynamics underlying disputes over natural resources and how can the escalation of potential conflicts be prevented? The debate, however, specifically aims to go beyond analyzing the complexities surrounding resource-related conflict resolution. By involving stakeholders in conflict-prone countries we aim to identify ‘windows of opportunity’ for change in the context of the global political economy. What can be done (globally, nationally and locally) to eradicate the root causes of natural resource conflicts? Contributions can focus on particular cases or specific conflict-prone regions, or be more general in approach.

You can send your contribution to our debate to (closed)

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