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Social licences to operate:for better not for worse; for richer not for poorer? the impacts of unplanned mining closure for ‘fence line’ residential communities.

Browne, Alison L and Stehlik, Daniela and Buckley, Amma and , Alcoa Foundation Conservation and Sustainability Fellowship Program (Funder) (2011) Social licences to operate:for better not for worse; for richer not for poorer? the impacts of unplanned mining closure for ‘fence line’ residential communities. Local Environment : the international journal of justice and sustainability, 16 (7). pp. 707-725. ISSN 1354-9839

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Abstract

Establishing ‘social licences to operate’ with communities has become a significant corporate social responsibility agenda. The complex dynamics of these relationships can compound the impacts for communities when these contracts are not upheld. This article documents reflections from a Rapid Rural Appraisal conducted in the Shire of Ravensthorpe in remote Western Australia after the Ravensthorpe Nickel Operation was ‘mothballed’ nine months into a projected twenty five year life span. It captures how communication about the project and its timeframes created a sense of consistency, predictability, certainty and trust - enabling the social licence. The raising of hope, and the emergence of mistrust underpin the social, environmental and financial impacts of this event for the local community. Embedded in the theoretical dimensions of social licences this case study highlights the problematic social licences engage with non-contractual stakeholders as partners in ‘booms’ but have no legal responsibility towards them in times of ‘bust’.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Local Environment : the international journal of justice and sustainability
Uncontrolled Keywords: mining ; social licence to operate ; corporate social responsibility ; mine closure ; Western Australia
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
ID Code: 40824
Deposited By: Dr Alison L Browne
Deposited On: 24 May 2011 13:31
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 26 Jul 2012 18:05
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/40824

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