Mining industry perspectives on indigenous rights: corporate complacency and political uncertainty

Rebecca Lawrence*, Sara Moritz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Over the last decade or so, there has been a global shift towards attempts to recognise the rights of indigenous peoples, particularly in regards to extractive activities on their traditional territories. At the same time, however, the extraction of natural resources in breach of indigenous rights, continues to take place at ever increasing rates. Using a case study of Swedish mining industry attitudes to indigenous rights, and specifically that of the principle of Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC), the article explores this paradox. Mining companies operating in Sweden do not currently respect or implement the principle of FPIC, and the article illustrates how mining representatives justify and reconcile this. It elucidates how the Swedish mining industry mobilises various, and at times contradictory, discourses, including on the one hand, the complacent rationale that human rights protections are superfluous in Sweden, and on the other hand, the idea that a respect for FPIC would create uncertainty and thereby threaten the existence of the mining industry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-49
Number of pages9
JournalExtractive Industries and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019


  • Indigenous Rights
  • Human Rights
  • Mining
  • Resource Extraction
  • Sami
  • Sweden
  • Sámi


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