“Second Wind” Resource Peripheries: Second Chance or Double Jeopardy?

Lead Author Andrey, Petrov
Institution Contact University of Northern Iowa 205 ITTC 1227 W 27th Street W Cedar Falls, IA 506104
Co-Authors Vera Kuklina, Sochava Institute of Geography, RAS (Russia) Natalia Krasnoshtanova, Sochava Institute of Geography, RAS (Russia)
Theme Theme 2: Vulnerability of Arctic Societies
Session Name 2.2 Resource development and building capacity in Arctic communities
Datetime Thu, Sep 15, 2016 01:15 PM - 01:30 PM
Presentation Type Oral
Abstract text A stylized notion of the resource frontier as a region with no or little industrial development that preceded an influx of extractive activities is becoming less relevant and adequate. Many current resource peripheries have witnessed one or more cycles of resource development in the past. Each of these cycles left its own legacies (infrastructure, population, institutions, etc.) forming a social, economic, political, cultural and physical “layer” upon which the following development cycles overlaid. In most cases, such layering became a manifestation of deeply rooted path dependency that locked in resource communities by perpetuating development trajectories based on resource extraction. As many regions in the North are becoming spaces of re-industrialization due to renewed interest to northern natural resources, it becomes more relevant to deepen our understanding of “second wind” (or “third”, of “forth”) resource regions, which are, arguably, the most prevalent group among 21st century’s resource peripheries.
This paper builds on the cases of Irkutsk Oblast in Russia and North Dakota’s Bakken Region in the USA to explore the dynamics of community characteristics, institutions, and capacities under the resource re-industrialization scenario. We seek to develop a more nuanced model of “second wind” community development trajectories and trace the role of past legacies in cementing path dependency and regional lock in. We argue that re-booming communities with limited institutional capacities (as most of them are) risk to experience even a more devastating bust, if left to their own devices in respect to planning and fiscal resources. This process can be described as a “double lock-in” mechanism: (1) past boom/bust experiences impede the ability of local institutions to adequately respond to the new boom, and (2) weak institutions are unable to secure proper benefits for municipality that results in lock-in propagation.
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