The Impact of Mining on Women: Lessons from the Coal Mining Bowen Basin of Queensland, Australia


Sharma, Sanjay. 2010. “The Impact of Mining on Women: Lessons from the Coal Mining Bowen Basin of Queensland, Australia.” Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal 28 (3): 201–15.

Author: Sanjay Sharma


The select indicators of gender equity from the Australian Bureau of Statistics Census 2006 reveal that women of the mining towns of the Bowen Basin region of central Queensland are at a substantial social and economic disadvantage to men. Through a review of select social science literature on mining communities the paper examines work, family and community structures and processes that promote and sustain patriarchy in mining communities and within households that could negatively influence mental health and relationship wellbeing of women in mining towns. This is a relatively neglected field of inquiry in the social impact assessment processes of large-scale mining in Australia. The paper suggests areas of research and policy initiatives to enhance women’s economic self-sufficiency, gender equality and wellbeing.

Keywords: SIA, mining towns, status of women, Bowen Basin, patriarchy, role overload

Topics: Development, Economies, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Equality/Inequality, Gender Equity, Governance, Health, Mental Health, Households, Livelihoods Regions: Oceania Countries: Australia

Year: 2010

© 2023 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at