Ghana

©Pijpers

Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining has a long and rich history in Ghana and continues to be a critical economic sector today. However, while ASGM offers opportunities to millions of people, it is also precarious, being subject to fluctuating gold prices, political agendas and the risks from negative environmental and health effects. The question is, then, how do gold mining actors imagine, work towards, and govern secure and sustainable futures? In focusing on the potential for sustainability transformations, emphasis is placed on how ASGM fits into larger histories of mobility for people and technology, linked to identity politics, and spatial organisation. Attention is paid to ´in-depth geopolitics´, namely the interplay of local socio-political contexts, the stage of a mining operation and technologies involved, and the specific characteristics of the gold deposit underground in processes of governing access to and extraction of gold. The mobility of transnational newcomers, including Chinese miners, creates shifts in extraction methods, production relations and territorial access strategies.