Nadja Kunz

Prospective Graduate Students / Postdocs

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Assistant Professor

Research Interests

Decision Analysis
Environmental engineering
Risk management
Systems engineering
water resources management

Relevant Degree Programs

Affiliations to Research Centres, Institutes & Clusters

Research Options

I am interested in and conduct interdisciplinary research.

Research Methodology

Social Network Analysis
Qualitative comparative analysis
Systems modelling

Graduate Student Supervision

Master's Student Supervision

Theses completed in 2010 or later are listed below. Please note that there is a 6-12 month delay to add the latest theses.

The Large-Scale Mining (LSM) - Artisanal-Scale Mining (ASM) interface in Peru: exploring a key policy "bottleneck" through Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) (2020)

Approximately 20% of the world's gold is produced by the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining (ASSM) sector and over 150 million people depend on the activity to sustain their livelihoods. Between 2002 and 2012, the price of gold in the international metal market caused an explosion of informal ASM activities in Peru, modifying, in key “mining corridors”, the relationships between formal mining (mostly Large-Scale Mining or LSM and Medium-Scale Mining (MSM) and informal mining (mostly Artisanal-Scale Mining or ASM). It is estimated that there are between 300,000 and 500,000 artisanal miners in Peru and further 1 million people linked to the activity, which produces 20% of Peruvian gold. Only 60,000 are registered in the State’s formalization process but to complete the formalization process, at least 64% of these cases require an “Exploitation Contract (EC)”, granted by the formal concession holder. This instrument has been the main “bottleneck” in the Peruvian formalization process and at the interface between these types of mining since 2012. This study applies a Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) methodology to explore the influence that 5 theorized conditions may have played in bringing about an Exploitation Contract between formal-LSM and informal-ASM scales. The absence or presence of these 5 conditions are arranged in a binary “Truth Table” for an intermediate “N” of 20 cases of the interface, representing diversity in terms of positive and negative outcomes. The results indicate that arriving at an EC in Peru, due to the lack of state presence in mining regions, is an issue to be solved mainly among private parties. Accordingly, the QCA application indicates that there are two necessary conditions to arrive at an EC: (1) a strong willingness to formalize a mining business on behalf of ASSM producers and, (2) a strong corporate incentive or “business case” for LSM companies to support ASM formalization within their concessions. In addition, the participation of a third actor or State’s active role, and a corporate culture appropriate to engage ASM producers, while not necessary conditions to bring about the EC, are consistently present in the “pathways” or “solution formulas” that arrive at an EC.

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Value creation from internalizing non-technical risks in projects: mining sector case (2020)

No abstract available.

Coping with resource curse: examining the case of extractive industry transparency initiative of Mongolia (2018)

This study examines the case of the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative of Mongolia (EITIM) through the lens of collaborative governance theory as a coping mechanism for a type of wicked problem known as the resource curse phenomenon. Wicked problems are problems with no definitive solutions that cannot be traced to source causes. They often encompass a set of interlocking issues that are changing constantly. The resource curse is the paradox of mineral wealth leading to poor development outcomes in developing countries (Auty 1993), and is characteristic of a wicked problem. This case study employs a mixed method approach in understanding how and why the EITIM has been successful. The methodology and conceptual framework are grounded in holism, mutual causality, and interdependence theory. Descriptive analysis, quantitative analysis, and social network analysis were applied to examine the four components of the conceptual framework: system context, institutional design, collaborative process, and performance productivity. Key contributions from this work include: extracting key factors contributing to the successful practice of collaborative governance, expansion of the resource curse phenomenon and wicked problem theories, and establishing the importance of recognizing the resource curse as a wicked problem. This perspective shifts the approach, strategy and expectations around how to approach and resolve the resource curse phenomenon. It’s problem-solving approach, strategy and expectations are embraced in the research design and provide new insight into effective strategies for collaborative governance.

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Current Students & Alumni

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