Social impacts in mining, scenario 1


The preparations to move and compensate the communities presently living on the land procured by Magda Mining is well underway. The mining company is holding a stakeholder meeting in one of the affected communities, and you are present as a representative of ESCA and the general authorities.

You have been told that a couple of human right’s organisations have requested to attend the meeting as observers, but been declined by the company out of concern that it would cause undue distress in the community and negative publicity for the company. They have instead referred to their own policy on human rights as well as the national law under which they have tailored their programs for social impacts and compensation.

You, as a representant for ESCA, notice that the large majority of participants in the stakeholder meeting are men. You see almost no women at all in the meeting. When you bring this up with the company officials they shrug their shoulders and refer to their open invitation to all inhabitants of the community, including women.

The few women you can see are sitting clustered together in the far back of the room, and they do not speak during the entire meeting.

You consider intervening in the stakeholder process and demand that the company take action to involve women more. There might be cultural obstacles for women’s participation that the mining company have overlooked.

On the other hand, it is important to stay on good terms with the company. They will pay large sums in taxes that will be a significant contribution for Pangora’s economic development. It may be wise to go easy on them unless the situation gets really critical. In addition, the company really did invite also the women of the community, can they really be expected to do more to ensure their participation?

What do you do?


Alternative 1: Push for women’s participation right away.


Alternative 2: The situation is not aggravated, continue with just observing for now.