A Research Agenda for Environmental Geopolitics
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A Research Agenda for Environmental Geopolitics

Edited by Shannon O’Lear

Challenging the mainstream view of the environment as either threatening or valuable, this book considers how geographic knowledge can be applied to offer a more nuanced understanding. Framed within geopolitics and using a range of methodologies, the chapters encapsulate different approaches to demonstrate how selective forms of knowledge, measurement, and spatial focus both embody and stabilize power, shaping how people perceive and respond to changing features of human-environment interactions.
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Chapter 10: Digging deep: crossing scale in the Georgian mining industry

Jesse Swann-Quinn


Extractive industries are profoundly political, unevenly shaping lives through diverse socio-material forces operating across a variety of scales. Yet mainstream geopolitical and geoeconomic analyses of the region’s mining practices often remain rooted in limited perspectives that privilege singular scalar foci over others. In this chapter I present a brief analysis of the gold and copper mining industry in the Republic of Georgia as one example of how we may recognize selective geographies and geopolitical claims in this and other areas of environmental geopolitics research. I do so by focusing on environmental geopolitical practices in the Georgian metal-mining industry, both material and discursive. Doing so unravels the relationship between geopolitical scriptings and other extractive practices they narrate, demonstrating how actors’ scalar imaginations prove crucial to politicizing extractive industries.

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