Postgraduate Profiles

Rachel Chapman

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Thesis: A Multiscalar Analysis of the Implications of Resource Led Development

This research will contribute to the understanding of various implications of resource-led development at the individual, community, and regional levels within Western Australia by:

• critically assessing the role government plays in the managing the impacts experienced by communities facing rapid resource development

• analysing the socioeconomic wellbeing of small mining communities and investigating how this has changed over time and in relation to exogenous factors

• examining the perspectives of individuals on the socioeconomic costs and benefits of living in a community characterized by rapid resource-led development

• investigate how the concept of evolutionary economic geography apply in the context of Western Australia

• contributing to regional development theory by critically analysing the conception of what constitutes desirable development objectives

Why my research is important

The mining industry in WA has grown at unprecedented rates over the past decade. This has significantly impacted the socioeconomic wellbeing of individuals, communities and the State as a whole. Looking at the broader scales, statistics such as high median incomes and low unemployment rates may make it appear that everyone is benefitting from this increased economic activity. However, these figures mask the uneven distribution of benefits experienced across the State and within communities. This variability in the costs and benefits has serious implications for the future social and economic planning of resource dependent communities, as it questions the concept of what constitutes “desirable development”. This research has the potential to inform economic and planning policy, as the mining industry continues to impact WA’s regional, resource dependent towns.


Mar 2012

Mar 2015