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Imagined futures in mineral exploration

Authors
  • Olofsson, Tobias
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2020
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/17530350.2019.1604399
OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-383136
Source
DiVA - Academic Archive On-line
Keywords
Language
English
License
Green
External links

Abstract

This paper uses ethnographic and archival data to analyze the creation and legitimation of predictions in industrial mineral exploration in Sweden. The search for exploitable ore deposits is a finance intensive process of resource creation in which mineral explorationists (e)valuate mineral deposits in order to assess their future minability. This paper builds on the recent literature on ‘imagined futures’ and futurework and combines it with the conceptual toolkit provided by (e)valuation research in order to outline how mineral explorationists establish a deposit’s existence and its future minability. Arguing that the creation of imagined futures plays an important role in mining and other social and economic phenomena, this article shows how imagined futures are created, and by whom, in the field of industrial mineral exploration, and how the creation of these futures is situated in a universe of actors’ beliefs, of valuation devices, and of norms and standards. The paper also shows how industrial standards guide this predictive enterprise and provides legitimacy to the results.

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