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Peacemaking and the Extractive Industries

Towards a Framework for Corporate Peace

Peacemaking and the Extractive Industries addresses a significant gap in research on the political and diplomatic role of multinational corporations in peace processes in intrastate conflict: Corporate Peacemaking. The author focuses on corporations in the oil and mining sectors, supporting or participating in peace negotiations and mediation. The chapters explore national-level peace processes, as well as those at community and global levels. While the focus is on extractive companies, the findings are valuable to companies from all industries looking at peace-related processes.

This ground-breaking book gives a comprehensive picture of how Corporate Peacemaking currently works, how it can be developed and implemented, and how it is likely to impact global governance and corporate culture in the future. The book demonstrates that Corporate Peacemaking has the potential to be a powerful element in international governance and peace efforts; and Ralph shows through the business case that companies, as well as communities, will benefit.

Ralph presents a new framework for Corporate Peace that will assist companies from all sectors in countries experiencing violent conflict, in addition to instability, human rights abuses and poor governance. Based on rigorous academic research with practical case studies, it is essential reading for practitioners, academics, policy-makers and NGOs.

This book fills gaps in understanding, and proposes much-needed best practice, frameworks, tools and new theory. Companies in most industries can apply this book’s ideas to their business and would be very wise to absorb its lessons. 

Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, Chairman, Foundation for the Global Compact and former Chairman of Shell

Ralph gives strong and compelling arguments to clarify and position why business engagement should include peacemaking. So far, this has often been disregarded or overlooked. It should be greeted as most welcome.

Per L. Saxegaard, Founder and Chairman, Business for Peace Foundation

This groundbreaking work on the contributions of businesses to peacemaking is comprehensive, insightful and long overdue. All actors working in or on fragile and conflict-affected regions - including representatives from the United Nations, regional organisations, NGOs, businesses, academia and civil society more broadly - would benefit enormously from adapting and incorporating these insights into their work. Corporate peace is indeed an essential part of the complex process of supporting sustainable and inclusive responses to violent conflict.

Josie Lianna Kaye, Director, TrustWorks Global

Natalie Ralph’s book is an important and timely contribution to a new and growing field of importance – corporate peacemaking. By blending new theoretical insights with practical case studies, it maps innovative approaches for how business can support the further development of peace within countries at all levels of development. It fills a vital gap in the current business and peacebuilding literature and will have resonance for years to come as the inevitable political and economic dimensions of globalisation can only increase the significance of this idea and field of practice.

Daniel Hyslop, Research Director, Institute for Economics and Peace

A timely addition to the literature on business and peace. This book provides valuable guidance on the potential role of mining and energy sector companies in support of conflict resolution through stakeholder engagement, negotiation and mediation.

Hrach Gregorian, Ph,D., Director, Institute of World Affairs and Practitioner in Residence, School of International Service, American University

The corporate world has remained a largely underexplored actor of the peacemaking scene. Dr Ralph's thorough research is filling this void by providing new data and insights on the private sector's role and potential in conflict resolution.


Kai Sauer, Ambassador, permanent representative of Finland to the UN

This is a timely moment to re-assess the extractive industry’s role in peacemaking. The new development goals recently agreed by world leaders offer a comprehensive vision of the future - and one which recognises the devastating impact of conflict on the lives and livelihoods of many of the poorest communities on the planet. If the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are to be met, then business must play its full part, including through efforts to build peace. This is one of the key underlying messages of a new book by Natalie Ralph - ‘Peacemaking and the Extractive Industries: Towards a Framework for Corporate Peace’. The book offers a practical and grounded analysis of a role for the extractive industry that goes beyond ‘do no harm’ and pushes companies to use the full range of their skills and resources to address violence and conflict. This will not prove easy but it is necessary and this book represents an important step forward in the process.   

Nick Killick, co-author 'Local Business, Local Peace'

Extractive resource development is often perceived, with good reason, as a  contributor to conflict at the national and sub-national level, so it is refreshing to see a study which focuses on the potential for resource companies to also play a positive role in preventing, resolving, or at least mitigating, these conflicts. Peacemaking and the Extractive Industries helps us to view the role of the corporate sector differently and is that all too rare a commodity: a book that is theoretically informed, empirically grounded and accessible to a non-specialist audience.

Professor David Brereton, Director of People Centres, Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland

The book comes at a time when corporate interest in peacemaking is developing. It will thus provide a valuable framework both for those companies looking to deepen their engagement as well as for those who are beginning to look at the issue for the first time. This book fills gaps in understanding, and proposes much-needed best practice, frameworks, tools and new theory, as well as highlighting which peacemaking activities are best suited to which situations. Companies in most industries can apply this book’s ideas to their business and would be very wise to absorb its lessons before venturing into this highly complex, sometimes controversial, but potentially transformative and rewarding activity. 

Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, Chairman, Foundation for the Global Compact and former Chairman of Shell

Natalie Ralph’s timely book offers new insights into the role and future potential of extractive industries’ involvement in corporate peace making (CPM). Providing a substantial analysis applying social constructivism, discourse analysis and poststructuralism to dominant discourses in business and peace and CR, she proposes politics be ‘brought back in’ and that responsible investment and business roles in conflict zones need to extend beyond economic peacemaking. Hence her formulation of CPM as a counter-discourse.

This thorough and creative treatise , explores the links between corporate responsibility, human rights and CPM. The resulting 14-intervention CPM framework and case studies of CPM will be useful to researchers, activists and corporate innovators who take on a more cosmopolitan approach to the contribution of business to peaceful relations and outcomes - a cosmopolitan corporate peace.

Prof. Linda Hancock has a personal chair in public policy at Deakin University.

Extractive resource development is often perceived, with good reason, as a contributor to conflict at the national and sub-national level, so it is refreshing to see a study that focuses on the potential for resource companies to also play a positive role in preventing, resolving, or at least mitigating, these conflicts. Peacemaking and the Extractive Industries helps us to view the role of the corporate sector differently and is that all too rare a commodity: a book that is theoretically informed, empirically grounded and accessible to a non-specialist audience. 

Professor David Brereton, Director of People Centres Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland

This is a terrific addition to business and peace literature. Ralph offers a provocative conceptual model and the fact that it derives from extractives, which so often find themselves is conflict-sensitive zones, makes for a great set of practical examples.

Timothy Fort, Everleigh Chair in Business Ethics, Indiana University

The role of business in this field - peace-making rather than just do-no-harm - is of radical importance as we move into a new era of global governance through multipolar institutions. Business is involved in all the trouble spots of the world, from the Middle East to the USA to the Ukraine, and there is a moral responsibility as peacemakers. If not, its leaders should be judged as morally bankrupt. This book is well written, well researched, and enjoyable to read.

Malcolm McIntosh, former Special Advisor to the UN Global Compact and author of 'Thinking the Twenty-First Century'

Foreword by Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, Chairman of the Foundation for the Global Compact

Foreword by Per L. Saxegaard, Founder and Chairman of the Business for Peace Foundation

1. Overview

2. Why explore CPM?

3. CR and human rights: leading to CPM

4. Assisting the transformation of war economies to peace economies

5. Conceptualising CPM

6. Implementing the CPM Framework

7. What is happening on the ground? Case studies of CPM

8. Assessing the case studies

9. Cosmopolitan corporate peace

References

About the author

NATALIE RALPH, PhD, is Research Fellow at Deakin University, Australia and also consults through Corporate Peacebuilders. She has over 10 years’ cross-sectoral experience in CSR; business, human rights and peacebuilding challenges in high-risk areas.

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