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A wealth of natural resources such as oil or diamonds should, in theory, favor a country's economic and social development. And yet, from the oil fields of the Persian Gulf to the diamond mines of West Africa, millions of people in resource-rich countries have seen their lives devastated as a result of exploitative commercial relations, corrupt governance and war. Going beyond conventional arguments of resource competition over scarce resources, this book examines the 'resource curse' affecting many resource-dependent countries and the spaces of (mis)governance shaping the violent geopolitics of many raw materials.
Highlighting the multiple forms of violence accompanying the history of resources exploitation and current business practices supporting predatory regimes, insurgent groups and terrorists, this book provides fresh and in-depth perspectives on so-called 'resource wars'. The book includes conceptual chapters and covers a wide range of case studies including the geopolitics of oil control in the Middle East, Central Asia and Columbia, spaces of governance and 'petro-violence' in Nigeria and 'blood diamonds' and other minerals associated with conflicts in Sierra Leone and the Congo. This book is a special issue of the journal Geopolitics.