Workshop Mining Matters 2023

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The current push to move away from fossil fuel reliance and invest in sustainable energy technologies like wind turbines or electric automobility is key to reach climate goals. While cutting emissions by phasing out fossil fuels is crucial, the transition to sustainables has stoked global competition for the required raw materials, such as nickel, cobalt, rare earth elements. If continued unchecked, this risks reproducing historically unequal colonial core-periphery relations, with rather powerful nations and companies extracting resources in formerly colonized areas in Africa, South America and Asia. This workshop examines these relationships and their materializations through the lens of coloniality, interrogating how different actors and agencies, disciplinary histories, bodies of expertise and knowledge as well as resource materialities contribute to, contest and perpetuate extractive injustice. We bring together scholars from a variety of disciplinary locations, such as STS, history, anthropology, geography, chemistry and geology, and working in diverse regional contexts, i.e. EU, Africa, South America, and Asia, to debate issues connected to underground extraction. In view of our aspiration to critically interrogate (neo)colonial patterns, we ask in particular, how green imaginaries of sustainable energy transitions in Europe play out in other world regions? What lessons can we derive from considering earlier patterns of resource making, extraction and circulation? What roles did/does chemical and lay expertise about the underground play? And how do futures of underground extraction align with climate goals and concerns for environmental justice?
Period27 Nov 202330 Nov 2023
Event typeWorkshop
LocationEnschede, NetherlandsShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational