The Clark Center for the Study of Natural Resource Extraction and Society was launched in the summer of 2019. Clark faculty and student research on extractive industries, infrastructure investment, energy, and agroindustry has become increasingly vibrant over the last decade, and the Center will serve as a space for this research community to grow. Initially bridging the Graduate School of Geography, International Development Community and Environment Department, George Perkins Marsh Institute and the new Earth conversation, the Center will also work to engage other departments and teaching programs at Clark and elsewhere.
Just as importantly, the Center seeks to deepen Clark’s collaboration and engagement with civil society organizations, researchers and public interest bodies around the world. Some of our core collaborations in the last five years have been with Oxfam, Ford Foundation, the Climate and Land Use Alliance, Fundación PRISMA, Global Greengrants Fund advisors, the Effective States and Inclusive Development Research Centre, the Universidad del Pacífico-Peru, the Catholic University of Bolivia, and a range of research and civil society centers in the Andes, Central America and Indonesia.
The Center is committed to cross-disciplinary approaches to research on resource extraction, with a particular focus on theory and methodology coming from political ecology, development studies, landscape ecology, and geographic information science and remote sensing. We are geographers, historians, social scientists, and scholars of development who wish to broaden the definition of natural resource extraction and better understand its shape, dynamics and consequences under a variety of environmental and governance contexts. Our focus is both local and global, and our concern is to do scholarship that advances understanding of the place of resource extraction within society and the Earth system, and that contributes to a governance of natural resource extraction that enhances community and human rights, the preservation and restoration of landscapes, and the possibilities of living well.