Giving a talk at Ryerson on Wednesday

I’ve been asked to give a talk on my research at Ryerson University’s Institute for the Study of Corporate Social Responsibility on Wednesday which I’m really looking forwards to. Blurb as follows:

Ryerson University’s Institute for the Study of Corporate Social Responsibility is pleased to present a talk by Manchester University lecturer Tomas Frederiksen on Mining & CSR in Africa: from Pressure to Impacts.  The talk is based on early research findings of Dr. Frederiksen based on work he has done in Zambia and Ghana. This event will take place on Wednesday, October 22 from 12-1:30 pm, in TRS 3-109 (9th floor), in Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Management (55 Dundas Street West). The event is co-sponsored by the Ryerson CSR Student Association, the Ryerson Commerce and Government Association, the Ryerson MBA Mining Stream, and the Chang School Mining Management Certificate. There is no admission for this event, but seating is limited, and you must register in advance at

Dr. Frederiksen suggests that it is becoming a de factor requirement for access to finance that mining companies have in place a credible and comprehenisve CSR programme that demonstrates that the companies can manage the risk and complexity of their operations.   In effect, international governance pressures are increasingly pushing mining firms to adopt elaborate CSR strategies which appear to move beyond mere “public relations” CSR approaches.  Dr. Frederiksen’s presentation is based on early findings from research on the relationship between these global pressures on mining company behaviour and the effects of this in changing CSR practice in the extractive sector.  Centrally, his research seeks to explore what difference these international pressures make for people living near mining operations drawing on initial findings from recent research in Zambia and Ghana. 

Time: Wednesday, October 22, 2014, 12 noon to 1:30 pm

Location:  Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University, 55 Dundas West, Toronto, ON, Room TRS 3-109, 55 Dundas West, Toronto

To register:

Do join us if you can, I think it will be a great discussion.

Organising a conference panel at the AAG 2015

Do join us:

Call for Papers: 2015 Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL, April 21-25

Session Title: When Logics Collide: Political and Economic Geographies of Extraction


Matt Himley, Illinois State University
Tomas Frederiksen, The University of Manchester


This session seeks to advance analyses of the relations and tensions between the economic and political geographies of extraction. Extractive economies manifest a “punctuated and discontinuous geographical expression” (Bridge 2011: 318), with mining and hydrocarbon capital not smoothly circulating across expansive territories, but rather through a patchwork of particularly ‘rich’ subterranean locations. Concurrently, the political systems though which capitalist extraction is carried out and governed typically maintain spatial forms that are distinct from the selective and irregular geographies of extraction itself. While within these political-legal geographies the territorial state, as owner of the subsoil in most cases, plays a central role, recent decades have witnessed a proliferation of differently scaled actors and institutions involved in extractive industry governance. This session aims to shed light on the frictions and mismatches between extraction’s economic and political geographies, as well as on the ways in which these tensions contribute to struggles generated by extractive activities. As the extractive economy expands these struggles are proliferating, for example as national governments strive to secure a ‘fair’ share of extractive rents, or subnational groups fight to receive just compensation for extraction’s socio-environmental ills. At the same time, the expansion of extractive industry does not just challenge existing political structures and systems but makes them anew, contributing to the creation of new, multi-scalar polities and novel, differently scaled regulatory architectures. This session, then, seeks to explore the contradictions and – at times generative – tensions between the political and the economic within the context of mineral and hydrocarbon development. We invite studies from both historical and contemporary contexts. Topics that papers might address include, but are not limited to:

– Strategies by different types of national governments to engage the global and geographically ‘restless’ nature of extractive industries

– The growth of global-scale norms and standards for extractive economies, and the implications of these for justice struggles in extractive regions

– Independence movements spawned by the flows of materials and resources that extractive industries produce

– The recent rise in ‘resource nationalism’ and associated struggles between states and subnational groups in extractive regions

– The new polities and decision-making structures created in the context of corporate social responsibility programs rolled out by extractive firms

– The relevance of Harvey’s (2003) conceptual distinction between territorial and capitalist logics of power for understanding extractive industry dynamics.

Please email abstracts of no more than 250 words by Friday, October 10 to Matt Himley ( and Tomas Frederiksen (

Note: We expect to seek the contribution of a discussant for this session; as such, presenters will be asked to submit a written paper several weeks before the conference.