Fool’s Gold: An Examination of Liberalization and Extractive Mining and in Ghana
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This thesis assesses the spatial distribution of mines in Ghana and its effect on residents in nearby communities. Large-scale mines are largely concentrated in the country’s “Golden Triangle,” a gold-rich area in southwest Ghana that has seen increased conflict, displacement, and poverty due to the expansion of large-scale mines, a key part of development policy in much of sub-Saharan Africa. Testing the relationship between the independent variable of a resident’s distance to the nearest large-scale mine and the dependent variables of their household 1) wellbeing and 2) attitudes towards government, as measured through a robust set of survey responses, this analysis is designed to assess the role of large-scale mining in the everyday lives and political perspectives of rural Ghanaians. Undertaken with an interdisciplinary approach, this research question possesses relevance to greater development scholarship, as large-scale mining aptly represents the logics behind the last several decades of structural adjustment and its successors. The data analysis finds no statistically-significant relationship between household wellbeing and distance to the nearest mine, with little evidence of any effect. However, in testing the relationship between household attitudes towards government and distance to the nearest mine, there is a significant relationship found that poses further questions. The influence of control variables is also discussed.
CitationGundersen, Connor (2018). Fool’s Gold: An Examination of Liberalization and Extractive Mining and in Ghana. Honors thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/16721.
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Rights for Collection: Undergraduate Honors Theses and Student papers