Case Study

The Value of Working Through Partnerships and Networks

The first of three focus areas for the Global Center for Indigenous Community Relations is the Partnerships & Learning Network. Since 2012, the value of working through partnerships and networks has been visible through the work of the FPIC Solutions Dialogue. In 2012, Newmont joined together with other companies, thought leaders and NGOs, including RESOLVE – an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to multi-stakeholder consensus building – to establish the FPIC Solutions Dialogue. This collaborative effort gathers practitioners from extractive companies, nongovernmental organizations and academia to have open and honest conversations about practical components of implementing Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). The Solutions Dialogue focuses on real-world examples to examine challenges, exchange ideas, and distill good practices and guidance from site-based experiences to support the implementation of FPIC.


At first glance, extractive companies and community advocacy organizations may not seem likely to partner together. But over recent years, as community acceptance has become one of the critical factors of success for any extractive resource project, getting diverse perspectives on the issue has become increasingly valuable. The Solutions Dialogue, which operates under Chatham house rules, allows members to meet in a spirit of cooperation, with an objective of finding practical and beneficial outcomes for communities near extractive projects.


The Solutions Dialogue has also spawned positive partnerships among members beyond the Dialogue itself, including through collaborative research projects. In 2016, Newmont volunteered to help improve global understanding and practical implementation of FPIC by asking RESOLVE to convene an expert advisory panel to study Newmont’s experience in engaging with local Pamaka Indigenous groups at the Merian mine in Suriname.


Panel members – who represented a range of experiences and expertise in law, social science, advocacy and community engagement – reviewed materials, talked with Newmont representatives and visited Merian, where they engaged with local stakeholders, including members of the Pamaka community. In 2017, the panel published a report on their findings called “Free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) within a human rights framework: Lessons from a Suriname case study.” Most recently, in 2020, Newmont joined RESOLVE and the Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining in conducting a new study of the effect of independent inquiries on industry behavior.


The value of networks such as the FPIC Solutions Dialogue allows good practice to be shared, stretched and tested in a diverse range of real-world contexts. The Global Center for Indigenous Community Relations will not only be participating in these networks and partnerships, but also building and sharing formats and approaches that work, to allow others to tap into their value.