This research project aims to contribute to the literature on post-conflict economic recovery by quantitatively studying the nexus between mineral resources, conflict and employment opportunities in eastern DRC. The mining sector in the DRC is currently undergoing a transition from artisanal to industrial mining. In several mining sites, there is a tense co-existance between both modes of mineral production. Within this framework, we study:
- The profile of artisanal miners and their coping mechanisms;
- How the transformation of the mining sector may affect individual-level determinants of participation in collective violence;
- If the presence of mineral extraction sites increases local conflict events; and if that relationship depends on the operational mode of the site.
What is the profile of artisanal miners, and what are their coping mechanisms?
How may the transformation of the mining sector affect individual-level determinants of participation in collective violence?
In order to study these questions, we conducted four rounds of fieldwork in the gold mining town of Kamituga (read about Kamituga’s history here).
- June 2013
Census of artisanal gold mining pits and actors
- May – June 2014
Semi-structured interviews with stakeholders & focus group discussion with artisanal miners
- December 2014
Pilot of our survey instruments and interviews with stakeholders
- March – May 2015
Structured survey among a representative sample of 469 artisanal miners
The information collected during our fieldwork so far led to the following research output:
- IOB Policy Brief 10, 2015. “The social minefield of gold digging in South-Kivu, DRC: the case of Kamituga”.
(with Kilosho Buraye and Marijke Verpoorten) PDF
- Amani Itakuya II Essay Series, essay 14, 2015. “The social minefield of gold digging in Kamituga, South-Kivu”.
(with Kilosho Buraye and Marijke Verpoorten) link
- IOB Working Paper 9, 2016. “Relocation, reorientation, or confrontation? Insights from a representative study among artisanal miners in Kamituga, South-Kivu”. (with Marijke Verpoorten and Kilosho Buraye) PDF
- IOB Working Paper 10, 2016. “Rélocation, réorientation, ou confrontation? Aperçus à partir d’un sondage représentatif des mineurs artisanaux à Kamituga, Sud-Kivu”. (with Marijke Verpoorten and Kilosho Buraye) PDF
- Resources Policy, 2017. “Defusing the social minefield of gold sites in Kamituga, South Kivu. From legal pluralism to the re-making of institutions?”. (with Kilosho Buraye and Marijke Verpoorten) link
- Work in progress. “Would you fight? An inquiry among high-risk youth in eastern DRC”.
(with Marijke Verpoorten)
Does the presence of mineral extraction sites increase local conflict events; and does the relationship depend on the operational mode of the site?
In order to study these questions, we make use of geo-referenced data on the location of industrial mining concessions, artisanal mining sites and local conflict events in eastern DRC. So far, this has led to the following research output:
- PLoS ONE, 2018. “More legislation more violence? The impact of Dodd-Frank in the DRC”
(with Marijke Verpoorten and Peter van der Windt) link
- Washington Post – The Monkey Cage, 2018. “Trump threatened to suspend the ‘conflict minerals’ provision of Dodd-Frank. That might actually be good for Congo”. (with Marijke Verpoorten and Peter van der Windt) link
- World Development, 2019. “Artisanal or Industrial Conflict Minerals? Evidence from eastern Congo”.
(with Marijke Verpoorten and Peter van der Windt) link PDF