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The Conference Theme is a collaborative research project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) based at the University of Kassel and the Philipps University of Marburg. We research natural resource extractivism in Latin America and the Maghreb and its many societal, economic, and political interconnections. This year’s conference will focus on extractivist regimes and the many pathways towards sustainability that countries and actors in different parts of the world are pursuing. Extractive regimes cover the set of formal and informal institutions, crucial actors, and the relational constellations they form, and the many social practices they employ to regulate the input, extraction, processing, distribution and consumption of raw materials and the corresponding energy turnovers.

The conference will delve into the multifaceted dimensions of extractivism, dissecting its historical roots, contemporary manifestations, and future trajectories. The topics in discussion range from issues that interrogate the entanglements of history, coloniality, and unequal exchange that shape modern extractivist practices to critical examinations of the new green windows of opportunity, the return of industry policies and the many extractivist traps of the current energy transition. We also explore who the key actors of extractivist regimes are, how alliances are built, legitimised, and challenged, and how myths of growth and development based on raw materials emerge and influence policymaking. The conference also confronts the complexities of green transition, unmasking the darker sides of sustainability, its exclusions and backlashes, and the role of financialisation and capital flows in these regimes.

With the Keynote: From Commodity Consensus to Decarbonization Consensus
Prof. Dr. Maristella Svampa (Universidad Nacional de San Martín, Argentina) Georg Forster Research Award 2024of the Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung

The Program

July 1st (Monday)

Opening Remarks by Bach, Usula (DLR-Projektträger)

Inaugural address by Burchardt, Hans-Jürgen (University of Kassel)Ouaissa, Rachid (Philipps-University of Marburg) Warnecke-Berger, Hannes (University of Kassel)

Description: Extractivist regimes are specific economic and political orders that emerge due to the global trade of raw materials and reproduce themselves through different institutions, actor constellations and global forces. This panel brings historical approaches to grasp the importance of extractivism in order formation, the dynamics of unequal specialisation and global asymmetries and global patterns of commodity trade.

  • Ricci, Andrea (University of Urbino, Italy) Complementary Paths of Dependency: Extractivist and Industrial Peripheries in the New International Division of labour
  • Amate, Juan Infante (University of Granada, Spain) The contribution of Latin America to the global supply of resources: Land, energy, and materials (1900-2020)
  • Oukaci, Kamal (University of Béjaïa, Algeria) Oil Rent and Income Distribution: Case of Resource-Rich Developing Countries
  • Kröger, Markus (University of Helsinki, Finland) Deforesting Extractivist Systems and their Resistance in the Amazon and Finland


Chair: Deciancio, Melisa (University of Münster, Germany)
Discussant: Warnecke-Berger, Hannes (University of Kassel, Germany)

12:00h-13:00h: Lunch 

Description: The energy transition is leading to a race for new raw materials and a renewal of industrial policies that conform to a green agenda. Only some countries can take advantage of this global recalibration to mobilise the needed resources and implement new policies to ignite structural transformation. This panel explores how the Global South can capture this moment to reassess its growth strategies and alter its development trajectories.

  • Marques, Pedro (University of São Paulo, Brazil) Towards a green growth model in Brazil? Prospects and limits for reindustrialization in peripheral capitalism
  • Sabry, Mohamed (Erasmus University of Rotterdam, The Netherlands) Cultural Factors and Prospects for the Success of Extractive or Participatory Green Hydrogen Production Schemes in North Africa
  • Robert, Veronica (CONICET, Argentina) Is the new green industrial policy a real opportunity for developing countries? What they can do, what not, and why
  • Gluhbegovic, Rebeka (Philipps-University of Marburg, Germany) Expectations of phosphates: Tensions between the local and national


Chair: Agramont, Daniel (Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation Bolivia)
Discussant: Herr, Hansjörg (Institute for International Political Economy Berlin, Germany)

15h-15:30h Coffee Break

Description: Social dynamics are specific to the inter-sectorial and inter-class alliances built along the consolidation of the extractivism development model, as well as the mechanisms of power distribution among those that control extraction, production, distribution, finance and technology. This panel focuses on actors, agencies and political coalitions, both domestic and international, emphasising their means of achieving legitimacy and adaptation capability, particularly in contexts of energy transition and sustainable development.

  • Christel, Lucas (National University of San Martin, Argentina) Extractivism and Development in Latin America: Discussions and Lessons from Lithium Mining in Argentina
  • Sabbatella, Ignacio (CONICET, Argentina) Latin American regional integration: challenges and opportunities of the energy transition
  • Jmad, Oumaima (University of Hassan II Casablanca, Morocco) Towards Sustainability through Ecofeminism: The Case of the Ouarzazate Solar Project in Morocco
  • Çelik, Coşku (Kadir Has University, Turkey) Extractivism, Labour, and Social Reproduction in Rural Turkey


Chair: Dihstelhoff, Julius (MECAM Merian-Centre, Marburg/Tunisia)
Discussant: Beck, Martin (Philipps-University of Marburg, Germany)

  • Keynote Speaker: Svampa, Maristella (National University of San Martin, Argentina, Georg Forster Research Award 2024 of the Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung)
  • Moderation: Burchardt, Hans-Jürgen (CALAS/University of Kassel, Germany)


19:30h-20:00h: Reception

from 20:00h: Conference Dinner

July 2nd (Tuesday)

Description: Global South countries often outline their policy agendas under the promise of transforming resource richness into national development, economic growth and social welfare. This panel examines the discourses and narratives that permeate the social perceptions of growth, expectations of modernity, nationalist drivers and social acceptability of development policies. It explores the impact of narratives, public perceptions and the interplay between national ideas and the pursuit of growth models.

  • Thyen, Kressen (University of Bremen, Germany) The Politics of Resource Nationalism (in Algeria and Tunisia)
  • Piaz, Agustín (CONICET, Argentina) Uranium and Nuclear Technology in Argentina: Development Narratives Amid Crisis and Energy Transitions
  • Manzano, Osmel (George Washington University, USA) What we know about Social License to Operate in the Andean Region
  • Keseks, Hanen (Natural Resource Governance Institute, NRGI) Taking the Power Back: Conceptualizing a People-centered Energy Transition

Chair: Kunin, Johana (CONICET, Argentina)
Discussant: Celleri, Daniela (Instituto de Altos Estudios Nacionales, Ecuador)

11h- 11:15h: Coffee Break

Description: Despite growing investment in green resources and renewable megaprojects, the world is grappling with increasing global inequalities, geopolitical conflicts, societal politicisation, and polarisation. This panel sheds light on the dark sides of sustainability and how the emerging order can be even more exclusionary than the current system, despite being “green”. It questions sustainability to whom, when, where and at what costs while stressing the importance of discussing transitions in a pluralistic manner, taking into account different contexts and needs.

  • Ajl, Max (University of Ghent, Netherlands) Social Costs of Extraction? Who Pays for Environmental Harm
  • Kramarz, Teresa (University of Toronto, Canada) “This Time it Will Be Different” – Derisking Development in the South American Lithium Triangle
  • Haddioui, Ouafa (Independent Researcher) Geopolitical Dynamics of Green Hydrogen Agendas in Morocco
  • Martín, Facundo (CONICET, Argentina) An Oasis for the Argentinean Desert? Paradoxes of Extreme Energy Projects in the Face of the Green Transition

Chair: Farrah, Raouf (Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime)
Discussant: Cerioli, Luíza (University of Kassel, Germany)

13:15h-14:45h: Lunch

Description: In the last decades, new transnational financial players have arisen within extractivism, enabling a diverse set of new inflows and changing the global financial architecture. This panel explores the links between capital flows, extraction activities, rent distribution and the future of the financialisation within a post-fossil fuel world. It examines how these processes intervene extractivist regimes and influence rent-channelling mechanisms and the overall trajectory of energy transitions.

  • Stratford, Beth (Leeds University, UK) Redistributing Energy and Resource Rents in a Climate-Changing World
  • Knuth, Sarah E. (Durham University, UK) From Financial Extractivism to (Neo-)Energy Extractivism? Contested Renewable Energy Futures in the United States
  • Bruna, Natacha (Cornell University, USA) The Rise of Green Extractivism and the Carbon Rush: Expropriation of Emission Rights and Climate (In)justice
  • Garcia Montoya, Laura (University of Toronto, Canada) Policy Conflict and the Political Economy of Land Restitution in Colombia
  • Buzogany, Aron/Ferre, Nathalie/Weller, Clara (BOKU University Vienna, Austria/Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris, France) Green Extractivist Power Europe


Chair: Eschenburg, Johann (University of Kassel, Germany)
Discussant: Scherrer, Christoph (University of Kassel, Germany)

This round table discussion is a joint panel organized by together with the Merian Center for Advanced Studies in the Maghreb (MECAM)’s series Rencontre Ibn Khaldun

  • Pichs-Madruga, Ramón Director at the Centre for World Economy Studies (CIEM) in Cuba and Vice-Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
  • VeehConstanze European Commission’s Directorate General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs
  • Ouaissa, Rachid Philipps-University of Marburg, Director of the Merian Center for Advanced Studies in the Maghreb (MECAM)


From 20h: Farewell Dinner

The Venue