Building a fairer process from the ground up

19 April 2021

The Accountable Mining Programme’s latest blog series explores what Transparency International Chapters are doing on the ground to strengthen community consultation processes.


As the Accountable Mining Programme’s global research has found,

  • when consultation only occurs with elites who do not necessarily represent the community’s interests, leaders can take advantage of negotiations for their own personal gain.
  • When the negotiation process is not transparent, and agreements are not published, it is difficult to detect whether negotiations have been manipulated and hold the decision-makers to account
  • If there are no clear or binding requirements for community consultation (or they are not enforced), this opens the door for the duty to consult to be ignored or undertaken superficially.

Working collaboratively with local civil society organisations and community groups, mining company representatives, government officials and traditional leaders, TI Chapters are building bridges to connect and support them to listen to each other’s perspectives.

TI Chapters are making information about mining projects and mining laws easier for local people to access and understand, ensuring local women and men can voice their concerns, advocate for their needs and hold decision-makers to account.

They are communicating local needs to national discussions about improving the transparency, accountability and fairness of the mining approvals process. Together they are building a fairer process from the ground up.

For example:

Cambodia environment

Transparency International Cambodia is working to strengthen the process for evaluating applications for mining exploration licences, with a special focus on Environmental and Social Impact Assessments.

Kenya Kwale

Transparency International Kenya is building strong networks of local civil society and community-based organisations, with representatives from industry and government, to work together to represent the community’s best interest.

Corruption Watch South Africa

Corruption Watch in South Africa is offering legal support to help communities sidelined in the process of approving mining operations access clearer information; while advocating for a fairer process that includes the local women and men in the decisions that affect their land and livelihoods.


Zambia mining

Transparency International Zambia has developed local Transparency Action Groups that have become self-sustaining community-led organisations that continue to help simplify and interpret mining and government reports for community members.

Transparency International Zimbabwe is advocating for a streamlined and digitised process for the registration of artisanal mining licenses – a simple and effective way to avoid the unwieldy and more corruption-prone process of paper trails and face-to-face discussions that can be exposed to bribery.

These blogs explore just a snapshot of the work TI Chapters are doing on the ground to make the process of approving mining rights fairer and to deliver better outcomes for the people most impacted by mining. 

Photo: TI-Zambia

Key publications