Fixing extraction through conservation: on crises, fixes and the production of shared value and threat

Charis Enns, Brock Bersaglio, Adam Sneyd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We are currently witnessing a global trend of intensifying and deepening relationships between extractive companies and biodiversity conservation organisations that warrants closer scrutiny. Although existing literature has established that these two sectors often share the same space and rely on similar logics, it is increasingly common to find biodiversity conservation being carried out through partnerships between extractive and conservation actors. In this article, we explore what this cooperation achieves for both sectors. Using illustrative examples of extractive-conservation collaboration across sub-Saharan Africa, we argue that new entanglements between extractive and conservation actors are motivated by multiple purposes. First, partnering with conservation actors serves as a spatial and socio-ecological fix for extractive companies in response to multiple crises that threaten the sector's productivity. Second, new forms of collaboration between extractive and conservation actors create pathways for both sectors to produce new value from nature. For the extractive sector, creating new value from nature works as a further fix to capitalist crises whereas, for the conservation sector, producing value through nature amounts to new opportunities for capital accumulation. Importantly, working together to produce shared value from nature within and beyond extractive concessions secures both sectors' control over the means of production. Theoretically, our analysis links literature on value in capitalist nature with that on spatial and socio-ecological fixes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)967-988
Number of pages22
JournalEnvironment and Planning E: Nature and Space
Issue number4
Early online date9 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2019


  • Spatial fix
  • Socio-ecological fix
  • Value
  • Capitalist nature
  • Natural resource extraction
  • Biodiversity conservation


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