PhD: « Qui ne risque rien, n’a rien »: Conflict, distributional outcomes, and property rights in the copper- and cobalt-mining sector of the DRC
PhD ceremony: S.G. Katz-Lavigne, MSc. Supervisors: prof. dr. J.H. (Jaap) de Wilde, prof. J. Daudelin, prof. J. Hönke. The Democratic Republic of Congo is rich in the copper and cobalt in high demand on the world market. In southeastern DRC, large-scale mining (LSM) has a long history, with a resurgence following the end of civil war in 2003. This revival of LSM investment resulted in the displacement of artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) by companies. These dynamics are sometimes conceptualised in academic literature and policymaking as resulting in constant conflict between LSM companies and artisanal miners, yet there is variation in conflict. I link this variation to the interactions between three key facets of the property rights (PR) regime at and around LSM sites, which I call corporate enforcement, authorised clandestine extraction, and unauthorised clandestine extraction. Clandestine mining persists as outside actors push into LSM concessions. The security forces use coercive tactics to try to “close” LSM sites to unpaid access by artisanal miners.