Gendering the Field: Towards Sustainable Livelihoods for Mining Communities


Lahiri-Dutt, Kuntala, ed. 2011. Gendering the Field: Towards Sustainable Livelihoods for Mining Communities. Canberra, Australia: ANU E Press.

Author: Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt


What might sustainability mean in connection with the international mining industry? This important book provides an answer to this question by outlining ways of thinking about the community livelihoods that might be supported alongside minerals development. Shifting the centre of attention from sustaining a controversial ‘development’ to sustaining the livelihoods of women and men in surrounding communities opens up the space to allow a range of practical initiatives. For example, procurement practices can distribute the economic benefits of mining to a wider region and to women, and negotiated agreements can safeguard the spiritual and social needs of indigenous communities living in the vicinity of mining activities. There needs to be many more strategies for transforming a non-renewable activity that destroys landscapes into renewable economic practices that support livelihoods and replenish ecologies. As women enter the mining industry in greater numbers and as their longstanding contributions in artisanal small-scale activities gain greater recognition it is timely to raise these important and hard issues of planetary survival. While there is no necessary connection between women and sustainability, it remains a commonplace observation that where women are able to survive well, their families and communities survive well too. The combined attention to gender and sustainable livelihoods of this volume signals an important turning point, not only for mining industry scholarship, but also hopefully for minerals development policy. We now know that mining companies can attend to gender equality and still perform well in the marketplace. They can also support community livelihoods and compete in the cut and thrust of a competitive industry. Perhaps the next challenge is to see how they can also become responsible and reparative environmental citizens and survive as businesses. The evidence provided in this volume allows us some hope for the future. (Abstract from ANU E-Press Open Research Library)


"The chapters in this book offer concrete examples from all over the world to show how community livelihoods in mineral-rich tracts can be more sustainable by fully integrating gender concerns into all aspects of the relationship between mining practices and mine affected communities. By looking at the mining industry and the mine-affected communities through a gender lens, the authors indicate a variety of practical strategies to mitigate the impacts of mining on women's livelihoods without undermining women's voice and status within the mine-affected communities. The term 'field' in the title of this volume is not restricted to the open-cut pits of large scale mining operations which are male-dominated workplaces, or with mining as a masculine, capital-intensive industry, but also connotes the wider range of mineral extractive practices which are carried out informally by women and men of artisanal communities at much smaller geographical scales throughout the mineral-rich tracts of poorer countries." (ANU E-Press Press Library
Table of Contents:
1. Introduction: Gendering the Masculine Field of Mining for Sustainable Community Livelihoods
Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt
2. Modernity, Gender, and Mining: Experiences from Papua New Guinea
Martha Macintyre
3. Bordering on Equality: Women Miners in North America
Laurie Mercier
4. Sex Work and Livelihoods: Beyond the 'Negative Impacts on Women' in Indonesian Mining
Petra Mahy
5. Experiences of Indigenous Women in the Australian Mining Industry
Joni Parmenter
6. Indigenous Women and Mining Agreement Negotiations: Australia and Canada
Ciaran O'Faircheallaigh
7. Gender-Based Evaluation of Development Projects: The LAST Method
Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt
8. Women-Owned SMEs in Supply Chains of the Corporate Resources Sector
Ana Maria Esteves
9. On the Radar? Gendered Considerations in Australia-Based Mining Companiesʹ Sustainability Reporting, 2004–2007
Sara Bice
10. Towards a Post-Conflict Transition: Women and Artisanal Mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo
Rachel Perks
11. Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining: Gender and Sustainable Livelihoods in Mongolia
Bolormaa Purevjav
12. Gender Mainstreaming in Asian Mining: A Development Perspective 
Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt and Gill Burke

Topics: Development, Economies, Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Indigenous, Livelihoods, Multi-National Corporations

Year: 2011

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