Blog

Exploring images, perceptions and transformations of small-scale gold mining: a transcontinental dialogue from different perspectives

Under the curatorship of Prof. Sabine Luning and with the participation of all members of the GM project, the virtual exhibition “Gold Matters – From Africa to the Amazon” captures images, aesthetics, and the description of mining landscapes, technologies, and actors Jorge Calvimontes and Luciana Massaro Contemporary challenges, such as climate and environmental change, the…
Read more

Sustainable Small-Scale Gold Mining? On the promises and politics of sustainable extraction

The Gold Matters project and the Infrastructure, Sustainability and Commons Lab of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam co-organized a panel on the relationship between small-scale gold mining and sustainability, taking place at the XVII International Conference on Environmental, Cultural, Economic & Social Sustainability Luciana Massaro and Jesse Jonkman Coffee-breaks, social dinners, post-session drinks… It is often in…
Read more

The Art of Co-Labouring: Christophe Sawadogo, Painter

In Christophe Sawadogo’s art projects co-labouring means teaming-up with artistic and artisanal experts of local communities to jointly address societal concerns Sabine Luning Christophe Sawadogo, a painter working in Ouagadougou, is a key member of the Gold Matters Team.  The themes of his artistic work, his commitment to address societal issues and his position on…
Read more

Beyond mercury? ASGM and the shift to cyanide in Burkina Faso

Technological innovation in ASGM does not only occur through voluntarist interventions aimed at promoting cleaner production, but also as a consequence of transformations in the political economy of resource extraction. In Burkina Faso, the diffusion of cyanide has determined a shift away from mercury-based processing techniques and reshaped the organization of production in artisanal mining…
Read more

#Reset2021 – Maintaining Transdisciplinary Teamwork through a Pandemic

Eleanor Fisher, lead researcher for the “Gold Matters” project, reflects on change to trans-disciplinary team working through the pandemic, underlining how we need all our energy, trans-disciplinary skills, and imaginations to capture opportunities for sustainable transformation. Our three year, “Gold Matters” project examines the potential for transformations to sustainability in Artisanal and Small-scale Gold Mining…
Read more

Global Gold Production Touching Ground: The Gold Matters participation to the book

Eight researchers from the Gold Matters recently participated as contributing authors tothe book “Global Gold Production Touching Ground: Expansion, Informalization, and TechnologicalInnovation” edited by Sara Geenen and Boris Verbrugge. Luciana Massaro Adopting a global viewpoint, this book shows how large and small-scale gold mining are both integral part of the global gold production system. Twelve…
Read more

Covid-19 for garimpeiros in Brazil: coping and cooperation

  For gold mining communities in the Brazilian Amazon, responses to Covid-19 is two sided: on the one hand, the vulnerability of small-scale gold miners (garimpeiros) is exposed, while on the other their capacity to find coping solutions is revealed. Edit   Luciana Massaro, Marjo de Theije, Jorge Calvimontes    Mining is an essential activity “Unfortunately,…
Read more

Are sustainable futures possible? Indigenous people and gold mining in the Brazilian Amazon

​Reporting on fieldwork in the Tapajós region of the Brazilian Amazon, Raíssa Resende de Moraes shows how the relationship between indigenous people and gold mining reflects a complex reality that challenges a simple dichotomy of miners’ vs indigenous people. Raíssa Resende de Moraes The social arenas (Ferreira, 2005; 2017) that surround indigenous peoples and Artisanal…
Read more

Uganda: Gold – A National Treasure?

This blog is based on Chapter 12 of the book ‘Global Gold Production Touching Ground: Expansion, Informalisation, and Technological Innovation’, edited by Verbrugge and Geenen (2020).   Uganda: Gold – A National Treasure? Eleanor Fisher, Lorenzo D’Angelo, Ronald Twongyirwe, and Esther van de Camp   The authors consider how elite privilege and entrenched inequalities undermine…
Read more

Gold panning and the Covid-19 pandemic in south-western Burkina Faso

Alizèta Ouédraogo For artisanal gold miners in south-western Burkina Faso, the Covid-19 pandemic is creating hunger, uncertainty and disruption, including for the Tãngpogse, the female economic entrepreneurs of the gold panning sites. Compounding an already difficult context related to Jihadist terrorism, gold panning has been impeded by the closure of air and land borders, the…
Read more