Mining and development : examining the effectiveness of mining company community development intervention in New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Development Studies at Massey University, Manawatu, New Zealand

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This thesis explores the effectiveness of mining company contributions to development within the gold mining communities of Lihir and Simberi islands, in New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea (PNG). More specifically, it analyses the extent to which forms of community development intervention undertaken on Lihir Island by Newcrest Mining Ltd, and on Simberi Island by St Barbara Ltd, actually support meaningful forms of development. This has been achieved through the use of development ethics (Goulet 1995) as a conceptual research framework, which when applied in research practice, gives priority to the wellbeing of those whose realities may be ignored, misread or marginalised within the neoliberal realm of development. This research is based on a total of four months of fieldwork undertaken on Lihir and Simberi islands. It draws on community narratives to frame the relevance of human wellbeing, human rights and inclusive development as development ethics within the research context. This development ethics research lens facilitates discussion about the meaningfulness of development intervention from a morally-informed community development perspective. Underpinned by a locally contextualised appreciation of what human wellbeing and meaningful development means on Lihir and Simberi islands (which results in the exposition of a set of local Community Wellbeing and Development Rights), a critical review of the practice and governance of development intervention within each Island community is then detailed. The analysis of development interventions then proceeds using firstly an evaluation of practices within a human rights lens, and secondly consideration of inclusive development outcomes relative to Newcrest's and St Barbara’s development related rhetoric. The resulting account of mining company community development intervention is critical, but ultimately hopeful. This hopefulness reflects the hope of customary landowners that mining will one day lead to meaningful development benefits. The analysis from this development ethics lens reveals insights into the promotion of social justice through the delivery of mining company development interventions. It is argued that mining companies have the opportunity to enhance a set of locally significant and internationally recognised human rights that are important to the wellbeing and development of customary landowners. Although, in some instances, mining company performance is falling short with respect to the enhancement of these human rights, it is argued that the enhancement of Community Wellbeing and Development Rights exists as a potential means for mining companies to add value to host communities. However, if such a development programme is to be meaningful to customary landowners, it must also advance equity and fairness. If mining companies fail to navigate such complexities, this thesis contends that mining, and forms of mining company community development intervention, will likely do more harm to communities than good.
Community development, Mining corporations, Social aspects, Environmental aspects, New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea