Skip to main content

#firstWedsDebates: Who Should Control Our Natural Resources?

  •  Wednesday, April 2    at 7:00pm
  • The Twisted Pepper - 54 Middle Abbey Street, Dublin, Ireland


Where to with our natural resources - with the rise of new global economic powers there has been a resurgent demand for key natural resources leading to a commodity boon for many countries. However all this comes at a cost for our environment and the rights of people living on or near these resources. What future for natural resource management? What is an acceptable level of exploitation and who should decide? Are there viable models that can protect the rights of people and promote sustainable development models?

Chris O’Connell is a PhD student, educator and activist. Chris spent many years living, working, volunteering and carrying out research in Latin America. In recent times he spent 3 years as Director of International Education at a university in Guayaquil, Ecuador, and is now a PhD Candidate in the School of Law and Government, with a focus on Latin American politics and development. Chris has been a member of the Latin America Solidarity Centre (LASC) since 2007, and has served on the executive committee since 2011. Chris regularly facilitates development education sessions on Latin America, including at Kimmage Development Studies Centre.

Karen Jeffares is a human rights activist who has worked in Latin America for almost five years. She was awarded a Master of Philosophy in Peace Studies in 2008 from the Irish School of Ecumenics at Trinity College Dublin where she specialized in non-violent forms of conflict resolution. During her studies she became interested in international protective accompaniment - a model of social activism inspired by Ghandian nonviolent philosophy. On completion of her masters she traveled to Central America where she learned Spanish and began putting the theory of international accompaniment into practice. She has worked and volunteered in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Northern Mexico, and Colombia - taking part in campaigns and accompaniment projects designed to protect the human rights of local people who are demanding social change and justice in the areas that they work. For the last three years she worked with Peace Brigades International. She has been an active member of LASC for seven years.

Dr Amanda Slevin is a sociologist who specialises in the subject of Irish state hydrocarbon management. With a background in community development, adult and community education, Amanda became active in campaigns around Irish gas and oil following the 2005 jailing of the Rossport Five. These five men were jailed for 94 days as a result of their opposition to plans for a high-pressure gas pipeline to be laid through their land, without their consent. As the controversy over the Corrib gas pipeline and terminal escalated, so did Amanda's interest in Irish gas and oil. Consequently she conducted her PhD research on the Irish state's management of its hydrocarbons, examining how and why the state developed its unique approach. She also compared the Irish model with other countries and investigated the negative outcomes of the state's approach as manifested in the Corrib gas conflict. See for further information

Tom Campbell works for the Kimmage Development Studies Centre, His research and teaching areas include Envrionment and Development, Sustainable Livelihoods, Sustainable Agriculture, and Climate Change
Adaptation. As well as teaching he has been active in the past with organisations such as VSI, Comhlamh and Feasta, and is currently a member of the Dochas Food, Livelihoods and Nutrition Security Working Group.

Posted Date: 
1 April 2014