tommy.jensen@sbs.su.se johan.sandstrom@ltu.se

Tag Archives: knowledge


Storyteller #26 – balancing between own people and contractors


Next storyteller is a contractor who (just as many of the other contractors we’ve talked) used to work for LKAB. The quotes below are from the part of our conversation where this person reflects on how a shifting balance between using the mining company’s own employees and contractors impact LKAB’s performance. – I think the easiest way for LKAB is to cut away more parts (of the operations), to sell out parts and place […]

Storyteller #19 – youth and work-life career in rural communities


Next storyteller, from the Swedish case, on living in a remote, small community and finding work in the mine: Where are you born? 40 kilometres from Karesuando and 220 kilometres from Kiruna. How did you end up here? I had to start the gymnasium and, well, then you automatically end up here. A lot of commuting, from the village to the town, to the village again. You lived here [in […]

AC/DC, the groin and science


The frontman of AC/DC, Brian Jonson, once replied to a journalist’s question about why AC/DC has remained so popular since the 1970s, that their music enters the listener through the groin first – men and women alike. Listening to, playing and recording music we can sort of relate to this groin sensation. But what has this to do with science? Nothing says the instrumentalists and the purists. Nothing says those who fear […]

Storyteller #16 – from Canada, on the relation between company and community


Our next storyteller is an aboriginal man, working as a manager at the mine and as a representative of his local community in the north. Mining companies, including their contractors, operating in the north have to hire Residents of Saskatchewan North (RSN) as labor (see previous blogposts on this, just search for the category “Canada” or “Aboriginals”). Below is an extract from our conversation about this: So in Canada you have that […]

Storyteller #13 – smoke and sustainability


Storyteller #13 is a woman, working in a white-collar position. We asked: – When you look at the mine, what kind of images do you get (in your head)? – When you come back from the mountains, we’re very often in the mountains to ski, so when we drive back into town, then you have the view of the (the old) open pit and the backside of the works, which […]

Storyteller #7 – wrong research strategy


We met storyteller #7 for the first time in a hotel lobby in Kiruna. He is an experienced miner, a man, presently working above ground. After talking to us for a while, he concludes that our research strategy is wrong. – Actually, you’re doing this the wrong way, I have to say. If I were you I’d first go around and observe (inside the gates), first get an understanding (of […]

Storyteller #5 – management


This story about management is told by a man who have been working in the mine for a quarter of a century, both under and above ground, previously as a worker, now as a manager. – I have my own theory: that it’s more trustworthy, for those (workers) who have to change, when a (a leader with experience of working in a mine) comes. ‘He’s one of us, so he […]

Storyteller #2 – leaving, coming, staying


Our second storyteller is a woman, living in Kiruna, working above ground. Here’s a story about leaving, coming to, staying in Kiruna: – Well, if you live up here, if you stay here, first of all, you like to be outdoors in nature. There’s no high-life, there is no shopping here. This is a probably why of all the youths growing up here, it’s often the girls who move out, […]

Responsible research: combining sense and sensibility


Below is text on responsible research by guest blogger, Anette Hallin at Mälardalen University, Sweden (read more about Anette by clicking here): What is our responsibility as researchers? To develop knowledge about the world, most people would answer. But how do we do this in a responsible way? According to my view, performing responsible research involves issues about the relationship between the researcher and that which she studies; a question […]

Mining capitalism


We’re reflecting on the book Mining capitalism (University of California Press, 2014) by Stuart Kirsch, professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan. We’ve mentioned this book before, but thought we’d dedicate a post on why we see it as relevant and useful to Organizing rocks. First of all, it’s a very encompassing book, targeting the relationship between corporations and their critics, between capitalist modes of production and critics of it, a dialectical […]

On Cozying Up to Corporations


Below you’ll find a post from our guestblogger Emily Eaton, Associate Professor at the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, University of Regina, Canada: “I read with interest the January blog post “Empathizing with the subjects of study” and was reminded of a conversation I had with Johan when he visited the University of Regina. At that time we discussed Organizing Rocks’ relationship to Cameco Corporation, the owner of the uranium mine and mill […]

Opening black boxes


Please find the second comment from guestblogger Michal Zawadzki: With the popular metaphor developed by Bruno Latour, one could say that neoliberalization of the contemporary academia too often brings down lecture halls in the universities and business schools to the level of ‘black boxes’: discourses closed to criticism, where interpretations of the reality authoritatively imposed by the teacher are reproduced. This situation stays in contradiction to the cultural mission of […]

Challenges for the mining industry in Saskatchewan


On his trip to Canada, Johan took the chance of placing professor Greg Poelzer in front of the camera (arranged and managed by Max Poelzer) to talk about the challenges to the mining industry in northern Saskatchewan. The emphasis on capacity building in the north, particularly in aboriginal communities, is strong and not something that we experience back home in the north of Sweden.