Anti-mining resistance in formal spaces of governance: The case of CASCOMI in Ecuador

In this paper,  Sánchez-Vázquez & Leifsen describe some of the strategies of resistance of CASCOMI, an association of peasents and indigenous Shuar, against a megamining project in the southern Ecuadorian Amazon. Facing pressure from the government and the mining company, the authors analyze how the association makes new uses of formal participatory instruments, and explores cracks in the governance system. Cracks and openings emerge due to the authorities’ failure to implement regulations and legal measures regarding affected people’s formal rights to participation. The authors consider how antimining activists take advantage of a space of participation included in the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA); engage in participatory monitoring of environmental quality associated with the Environmental Management Plan (PMA) of the EIA, and take part in a process of participatory diagnosis of the Territorial Development Plan (PDOT). These activities generate a boomerang effect, in which formal resources of governance and corporate science production return to the authorities as a form of resistance work. Considering the emancipatory potential of these actions, the authors also look at the conditioning restrictions that authoritative framings place on these resistance strategies. 

Read more in the European Review of Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Published 6. January 2020 - 10:01 - Updated 6. January 2020 - 10:04