This thematic cluster of Ghent University’s Conflict Research Group (CRG) focuses on the politicization of contested resource access.

Contested resources

Access to resources such as land, minerals, forests…  is crucial for the survival of numerous households all over the world. Control over these resources therefore implies control over people’s daily livelihood, turning these control mechanisms into a valuable asset to obtain political power. Next, access to resources is central to processes of state building, making these resources particularly contested in those contexts where state authority is challenged by non-state armed groups. Within this cluster, we bring together projects and researchers focusing on the politicization of resource access, aiming to better understand the daily complexities of resource governance and the manner state and non-state public authority is established based on control mechanisms governing the access over resources.


Gender, Climate Change and Conflict in practice: Adaptation, Resilience and Sustainable Peace in the Africa Great Lakes Region

This project aims to map and examine how local communities in general, and women’s movements in particular, adapt and remain resilient in settings where climate change is exacerbating protracted conflict.

Gender, Climate Change and Natural Resource Management

With this project, we propose a deeper critical interrogation of what meanings gender equality and women’s empowerment assume in natural resource management initiatives in conflict-affected countries.

The Political Ecology of Conservation Conflicts

This study goes beyond Human-Wildlife Conflict to explore the broader multi-scalar politics that produce both conservation and its conflicts

The maritime in the landlocked: The position and role of seas in the modern shaping of the Ciscaspian-Central Asian region.

This research, which focuses on the early-modern and modern historical periods,  looks into the position and role of these water surfaces and their respective littorals in western Central Asia’s social history.

The Spectre of Political Induced Mobility in Kenya

This research project aims to explore how historical land grievances and post-colonial structures have contributed to political induced violence that has led to different categories of im/mobilities.

The political economy of river sand mining in South Asia: A commodity chain approach

South Asia's riverbeds are a primary site of conflict between the need for development and environmental protection.

Lalaw ha mga buntod (sacred mountains)

Navigating autonomy and forest conservation in two Philippine contested frontiers

The political economy and governance of river sand commodity chains in Ethiopia

This research, outreach and networking project aims to better understand the political economy and governance of river sand commodity chains in Ethiopia to put the topic on the agenda of policy makers and civil society in Ethiopia.

The politics of time at the ASM-LSM interface in south-eastern Democratic Republic of Congo

This project investigates how the politics of time shapes the interaction between ASM (artisanal and small-scale mining) and LSM (large-scale mining) actors in places where the two forms of mining co-occur.

Petro-sexuality in the Niger Delta: tracing back the colonial roots of toxic geographies and masculinity

Despite that the Niger Delta region is the wealthiest in resources, the people of this region are amongst the poorest in the world.

Border as “Opportunity”: Informal Cattle Trade across the Bangladesh-India Borders

The project, generally, intends to understand how borderland population put their efforts to adapt to transforming international borders and earn alternative livelihoods.

Creative Actions in Times of Political Crisis and COVID-19 Pandemic: Everyday Vitalities in Conflicted Communities in Mindanao, Southern Philippines

Drawn from the context of the conducted multi-sited two-year ethnography with the internally displaced Lumad ethnolinguistic groups in Manila and Mindanao, Southern Philippines also known as Lumad "bakwit" (evacuees) before and during the militarized lockdown and global COVID-19 pandemic, this Ph.D. research project provides a transdisciplinary, theoretical, methodological, and empirical narrative of the impact of the militarized pandemic in the Philippines on the internally displaced Lumad evacuees who politically act, resist, and speak out on issues such as human rights violations, environmental plunder of their ancestral domain, widespread state-sponsored impunity, and deprivation of social services.

Book project: Beyond Green Colonialism: Global Justice and the Geopolitics of Ecosocial Transitions

This book project consciously moves away from the ubiquitous just transition rhetoric, seeking to strengthen more meaningful concepts like green colonialism, global justice, and ecosocial transformation in the debate about Green New Deals and pathways out of the planetary polycrisis.

Agroecology and the Emergence of a New Societal Paradigm: a Comparative Case Study on Social Movements and Transitions

This project investigates how agroecology is manifested politically as an answer to a development paradigm of industrial agriculture and extractivism in both indigenous and peasant communities in Argentina.