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UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Reexamining free, prior and informed consent ( FPIC ) inside Burma : a case study Mccartney, Dana


Throughout history, indigenous peoples have figured among those groups who have been most systematically denied and violated of their right to give or withhold consent ( FPIC ) for resource development, most notably when there are large-scale development projects. This thesis examines the principle of FPIC in Burma, the barriers and opportunities concerning its application and implementation, how it may be interpreted in different situations or by different stakeholders, and the need why the need for new collaborative forms of governance. I posit my study on the notion, and theory by John Owen that it has been clear for some time that the market system is unable to account for and regulate the kind of dynamic social and human rights risk associated with large-scale development projects, and that new deliberate efforts are required to ensure that social risk is identified, understood and responded to by those parties involved in the natural resource sector. I show in my study, although the Government of Burma's obligations with regard to consultation and FPIC are minimal at best in national law and policy, and the debate regarding the legal status of FPIC under international law continues unabated, I argue how indigenous communities, the Government of Burma and investors might benefit by applying ' the spirit of FPIC ' as part of their CSR policy. Additionally, I show in the case of Burma's judicial system a legal and compliance driven definition of FPIC alone cannot resolve indigenous peoples' multiple claims, and assert that legal mobilization is only one aspect of indigenous peoples broader political strategies. I explore the current socio-political context in Burma and argue that evolving informal protest movement, complaint, non-compliance and negotiation must remain part of the solution, and bottom-up policy option to advancing land and resource rights in natural resource-affected communities in the context of operationalizing FPIC in response to the violent dispossession by transnational extractive corporations in Burma.

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