By Sanna Komi, University of Helsinki (Finland)
What, if anything, has conservation got to do with extractivism? What are some of the more general phenomena that shape the way we as modern humans living in capitalist societies relate to the non-human “nature”? I discussed these questions along with examples from my ongoing PhD research on wolf conservation in August 2019 in an interview with the EXALT podcast, which is out now. In the episode you can hear some examples of how the image of wolves has changed in Finland over time, what some of the biggest threats to wolf conservation are, and why I think the CONVIVA – convivial conservation research project offers an exciting alternative to current conservation paradigms.
The podcast is part of The Global Extractivisms and Alternatives Initiative (EXALT), “a new international network of scholars, activists, and policymakers dedicated to collaboration and knowledge creation around the pressing crisis stemming from extractivist policies and practices.” Especially the alternatives to extractivism link closely to conservation: leaving natural resources in the ground is, essentially, conserving them and the surrounding ecosystems and landscapes. In Finland, this can be seen in the intensive forestry that shapes much of the landscape and ecological conditions where both wolves and their prey live.
EXALT will host an international conference on October 20-23, 2020, at the University of Helsinki on the theme of “Concurrent Crises and Sustainable Futures: Global Extractivisms and Alternatives”, and the call for abstracts has just opened.
To listen to the podcast episode on any platform, please click here.