Characterizing a mining space: Analysis from case studies in Chile and Australia

Área de publicación Marketing
Tipo de publicación Artículos
Fecha de publicación 2019

There is abundant research regarding the impact of the mining industry on settlements and communities, however, there is a lack of understanding regarding the characteristics of large-scale mining impacts from a socio-spatial perspective. The main objective of this study is to characterize a “mining space” by drawing on some of the analytical concepts of Henry Lefebvre (1991) production of space. Based on data from four case studies of mining spaces located in Chile and Australia, this paper addresses a gap in the literature regarding the characterization of the impact of large-scale mining from a spatial lens. Current spatial perspectives of mining are limited to scale and identity descriptions, such as mining town, city or region, or economic geography dynamics such as enclaves or industrial agglomerations; there is no concept that considers the spatial dimension that large-scale mining industry imprints in a settlement. Based on the findings of this paper, the authors propose a conceptualization and the characterization of a mining space that considers two of the trialectic dimensions proposed by Lefebvre: spatial practices and representation of space. This study contributes to existing literature on mining policy, and provides suggestions for government officials and policy makers to better understand and manage the territory developed in large-scale mining.

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