Resources

General

The printable brochure (PDF – 1MB) — with info on CIRDI, its transnational mining & diplomacy context, and recommendations we’ve made for its substantive transformation.

Dozens of documents (atip-records page) — accessed under BC’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and federal Access to Information and Privacy legislation, pertinent to CIIEID/CIRDI, mining money at UBC, and Canadian diplomacy on behalf of mining companies abroad.

On the creation of CIRDI

2011 CIDA consultation process for creating the CIIEID (PDF – 1MB) — Released under the Access to Information Act in 2013 (but almost completely redacted), this Memorandum for the Minister proposes “while there are currently numerous research institutes in Canada focusin on extractive-related industries and, separately, on international development, none brings the two issues together to offer both cutting-edge policy research and practical, technical assistance.” Why was most of this redacted?

2012 Letters of Support (PDF – 7MB) — from CIRDI’s supporters, partners, and ‘strategic partners,’ useful to understand who is involved, what projects/initiatives/objectives each is interested in, and what they’d like to see CIRDI accomplish in other countries.

2013 Contribution Agreement (PDF – 1MB) — the contract between the federal government and UBC for founding CIIEID/CIRDI

2013 Report to UBC’s Board of Governors (PDF – 0.2MB) — Signed by UBC president Stephen Toope, requests the BOG to approve the contribution agreement. Notes that part of UBC’s contribution will be from student tuition.

2013 Business Plan (PDF – 1MB) — An early business plan for the Canadian International Institute for Extractive Industries and Development, with no concrete information on projects, budgets, etc. Rough organizational chart on p.26; coalition university departments identified as potential partners on p.28.

Canada’s Foreign Policy

2013 Global Markets Action Plan (PDF – 2.6MB) — Canadian federal government publication outlining ‘economic diplomacy’ to promote trade: “under the plan, all diplomatic assets of the government of Canada will be marshalled on behalf of the private sector.”

2014 Doing business the Canadian way: a strategy to advance CSR in Canada’s extractive sector abroad (PDF – 0.5MB) — Canada’s latest strategy to win public approval for–but limited substantive regulation over–Canada-based mining, oil, and gas companies in their operations in other countries. More focus on partnerships with civil society, and meddling in the legislation of so-called developing countries. English summary here (PDF – 0.3MB). Disponible aqui en español (PDF – 0.5MB), y un resumen aqui (PDF – 0.3MB).

On academic freedom, academic integrity, and the corporatization of universities

2010 Higher education or education for hire? Corporatization and the threat to democratic thinking — Joel Westheimer’s article concludes that “if universities hope to strengthen democratic society, they must resist focusing  curriculum and research on skills-training, workforce preparation, and the commercialization of knowledge to the benefit of private industry. They must instead participate in the rebuilding of a public purpose for education.”

2013 Open for business: on what terms? (PDF – 1.7MB) — Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) Analysis of 12 collaborations between Canadian universities and corporations, donors, and governments. It offers guiding principles for university collaborations to protect academic freedom, academic integrity, open exchange of ideas and discoveries, ensure transparency, and to protect against conflicts of interest.

2013 Harper’s attack on science: no science, no evidence, no truth, no democracy — Carol Linnit’s accessible article in Academic Matters addresses the efforts by Canada’s federal government to defund and muzzle scientists, eliminate scientific institutions and disappear research across Canada.

2014 The Corporatization of Canadian Universities (PDF – 3.2MB) — Jamie Brownlee’s PhD dissertation on the problems generated as universities are restructured as capitalist entities, on commercialization of applied research, and on the “corporate corruption of academic research.” Current concepts and critiques that provide valuable insight, and context for CIRDI’s threat to academic freedom at our universities.

Critiques of Canadian mining, extractivist foreign policy, and CIRDI

2007 National roundtables on CSR & Canadian extractive industry in developing countries (PDF – 2.3MB) – the Advisory Group Report presented to the Canadian government summarizes the outcomes of the National CSR Roundtables and makes recommendations to the Canadian government, industry, investors, and civil society. It was largely ignored by the Canadian government.

2009 Leaked CSR report on Canadian mining & exploration in the developing world (PDF – 0.7MB) — Performed by the Canadian Centre for the Study of Resource Conflict (CCSRC, resourceconflict.org) under contract to the PDAC, it was immediately buried by its sponsors. (It found that despite most Canadian firms having CSR policies, Canadian mining companies had three times the incidence of CSR violations than those of its closest neighbor.) Thanks to the 2010 leak to the Toronto Star, you can read for yourself the conclusions of the [ccsrc_report_0906] report “Corporate Social Responsibility: Movements and Footprints of Canadian Mining and Exploration Firms in the Developing World.”

2012 CCIC response to CIDA’s CIIEID consultation note (PDF 0.1MB) — Submitted to the Canadian government during early stages of developing the institute’s structure and objective, the deep concerns identified in this response by the Canadian Council for International Cooperation were not implemented.

2012 Profiting from repression: Canadian investment in and trade with Colombia (PDF – 2.2MB) — Asad Ismi’s comprehensive analysis is described as “The definitive account of corporate-driven Canadian neocolonialism in Colombia and the most comprehensive book on the subject. A superb analysis of how Canada’s corporations and government benefit from and exacerbate Colombia’s decades-old social and armed conflict.”

2013 Debunking Barrick (1.4MB) — From the folks behind protestbarrick.net, the thoroughly-cited document answers “why we can’t allow this mining giant to regulate itself.” Its concluding recommendations apply also to its peers in the mining sector, such as “respect the self determination of communities neighboring its mine sites, including the right to say ‘no’.”

2013 Human rights record of CIIEID strategic partners (PDF – 0.1MB) — This brief paper summarizes the alleged human rights violations, environmental abuses, and deeply concerning actions by this extractive institute’s partners.

2014 Mining Watch Canada brief on CIIEID (PDF – 0.7MB) — Lays out why CIRDI (then CIIEID), will not meet its stated objectives: not independent of Canadian government, not independent of extractive companies, will promote extractive industry growth (rather than poverty reduction), and the Canadian government’s track record of privileging investment over protecting communities, workers, and environment. Version en Español aqui (PDF – 0.7MB).

2014 The impact of Canadian mining in Latin Amreica and Canada’s Responsibility (PDF – 1.2MB) — The full Spanish version (PDF – 2.6MB) of this executive summary was presented to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), and makes recommendations to Canada and to the governments of countries where mining, oil, and gas activities are undertaken.

2014 Open letter from mining-affected communities in Mexico (PDF – Español – 0.2MB) — The groups demand that the Mexican, US, and Canadian heads of state “abstain from defending the interests of large mining companies and focus on ensuring that peoples are fully guaranteed the rule of law and respect of their human rights, which governments have ratified in international conventions.” They conclude that “until this happens, we will continue in resistance to these predatory policies that violate the lives of the peoples.” English version available online here.

2014 Ruling by the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal on the Canadian mining industry in Latin America (PDF – 3.3MB) — Based on testimonies heard in May-June 2014 about rights violations by Canadian mining companies, and the political, economic, financial, and legal support of the Canadian state to the expansion of mining in Latin America, the PPT makes recommendations to Canada, host countries, human rights organizations, civil society, and the Canadian companies Barrick Gold, Goldcorp, Tahoe Resources, Blackfire Exploration, and Excellon Resources.

2014 Rethinking Canadian Aid (PDF – 4.2MB) – Published under a creative commons license, this open-access book from the University of Ottawa Press was edited by Stephen Brown, Molly den Heyer, and David R. Black offers several critiques of the recent evolution of Canada’s ‘aid’ policy toward economic diplomacy and the recommercialization of Canadian development assistance. See especially chapters by Gabriel C. Goyette (p.259) and Stephen Brown (p.277).

Proposed bills for increased accountability of the extractive sector abroad

2009 Bill C-300 (PDF – 0.1MB) — A private member’s bill sponsored by Liberal MP John McKay, and based on recommendations made by the 2007 National Roundtables Advisory Group Report (above), its purpose was to “promote environmental best practices and to ensure the protection and promotion of international human rights standards in respect of the mining, oil or gas activities of Canadian corporations in developing countries. It also gives the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of International Trade the responsibility to issue guidelines that articulate corporate accountability standards for mining, oil or gas activities and it requires the Ministers to submit an annual report to both Houses of Parliament on the provisions and operation of this Act.” It failed to pass (140 to 134). See this mining industry perspective on the “win” with C-300’s defeat, and this opinion piece (PDF – 0.1MB) by Michael Bourassa (a lawyer with Fasken-Martineau, a CIRDI strategic partner) explaining why Canada’s extractive sectors shouldn’t be held accountable.

2013 Bill C-323 (PDF – 0.1MB) — A private member’s bill sponsored by NDP MP Peter Julian, to “amend the Federal Courts Act to expressly permit persons who are not Canadian citizens to initiate tort claims based on violations of international law or treaties to which Canada is a party if the acts alleged occur outside Canada. It also sets out the manner in which the Federal Court and the Federal Court of Appeal can exercise their jurisdiction to hear and decide such claims.” It has not yet been voted on.

Harper's CIRDI Mining Institute at UBC & SFU: Free Prior & Informed Consent a barrier to mining profits