Unsustainable extraction of natural resources has come under increasing criticism since the 2000s, as global commodity prices have risen, and new waves of land grabbing and investing have put resource politics in the limelight of global development. The concept of extractivism has been gaining scholarly and policy relevance and is becoming more widely used as an organizing concept to explore a range of unsustainable practices. The study of extractivism and its impacts extends to the deeper historical and structural features that underlie unsustainable practices, including economic models and ideologies. The concept of extractivism is useful for highlighting the deeper and systemic roots of unsustainability. The phenomena surrounding resistance to extractivism are highly useful for understanding the often-overlooked struggles of local communities. It is through such local struggles that communities may pursue more sustainable land-use practices, and more just socio-ecological conditions. This resistance often involves a deep critique and rethinking of the ways of understanding and conceptualizing nature, through which alternatives to extractivism, as a basis for sustainability, can be developed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSituating Sustainability : A Handbook of Contexts and Concepts
EditorsC. Parker Krieg, Reetta Toivanen
Number of pages14
Place of PublicationHelsinki
PublisherHelsinki University Press
Publication date22 Nov 2021
ISBN (Print)978-952-369-050-9
ISBN (Electronic)978-952-369-051-6
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2021
MoE publication typeA3 Book chapter

Fields of Science

  • 1172 Environmental sciences
  • 5203 Global Development Studies

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