"Jill Shankleman asks whether oil and gas companies can, and should, do more to promote peace and mitigate conflict in the fragile countries where they operate. Her answer is an emphatic "Yes!" Intensely conscious of both the opportunities and the constraints that corporations face in difficult environments, she focuses on three case studies: Azerbaijan, Angola, and Sudan. The result is a balanced, comprehensive, and practical analysis that is thoroughly readable. Shankleman offers concrete recommendations encouraging companies to increase shareholder value while at the same time reducing conflict risk. A must-read for the governments of oil-producing countries, officials from donor countries and multilateral organizations, NGOs, students of conflict resolution, and, most of all, oil industry executives."

--Pauline H. Baker, President, the Fund for Peace, and Founder, the FFP Human Rights and Business Roundtable
 

"Oil, Profits, and Peace is a masterly and accessible analysis of the rising social costs of oil production in emerging countries. This well-researched, appealingly written book points up the dangers posed by volatile oil prices, and the links between oil export and conflict. In a compassionate and sincere tone, Shankleman presents compelling suggestions to oil companies on how their activities can promote peace, even in difficult environments. This should be obligatory reading for anyone interested in the politics of oil and global development."

--Toyin Falola, the Frances Higginbotham Nalle Centennial Professor and University Distinguished Teaching Professor, University of Texas at Austin, and coauthor of The Politics of the Global Oil Industry
 

"A superb nonideological, analytical primer on the oil industry, the 'resource curse,' and the efficacy of corporate social responsibility programs. Essential reading for corporate managers, NGO advocates, and serious students of oil and conflict."

--David Goldwyn, President of Goldwyn International Strategies, LLC, and former Assistant Secretary, U.S. Department of Energy
 

"If you read only one book about the international oil industry, this should be it. This advice applies whether you work for an oil company, a government, an NGO, or the media, or are just a member of the general public interested in how the presence of oil companies affects the lives of people and nations. Shankleman's scope is vast, and the data she marshals daunting, but she imposes order effortlessly on what could so easily have been chaos, presenting her arguments and recommendations in lucid, easily read prose. Speaking from some thirty-eight years' exposure to the issues involved, I find her analysis scrupulously fair both to governments and to the oil industry, well founded on practical examples, and clear on the limits to responsibility and freedom of action. Her focus on revenue-associated issues and their potential solutions as the critical concern is wholly correct, yet she also emphasizes the other areas--especially responsible social impact management and employment creation--where more systematic and proactive oil company action than is currently the norm can improve things greatly. Here as in other areas, her suggestions for the path ahead are pragmatic in the extreme. As a long-term oilman, I would find it a matter for regret if Shankleman's book did not become required reading for the in-house courses run by oil companies for their graduate staffs, or if a well-thumbed copy did not have a place on the desk of every oil company executive."

--Donal O'Neill, Resource Advisors Ltd., retired from Shell International, Exploration and Production
 

"Managing 'resource curse' and its elements of conflict is one of the greatest challenges facing future supplies to world oil markets. Shankleman's book is a balanced, intelligent and innovative contribution to the growing debate on what the nature of that challenge is and how it might be managed by all players, but especially the oil companies. It should be compulsory reading for all involved in investing in upstream oil."

--Paul Stevens, Professor, the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy, University of Dundee, Scotland

Latest Publications

Zambia’s New Leadership and the Stakes for Africa

Friday, September 24, 2021

By: USIP Staff

Weeks after his election to lead his southern African nation, Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema vowed to reverse his country’s recent erosion of democracy and good governance, and to stabilize an economy in recession—all despite the burdens of COVID, environmental shocks, and a dangerous “mountain” of debt accumulated in recent years.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & Governance

Prioritize Building Resilience at this Year’s U.N. General Assembly

Prioritize Building Resilience at this Year’s U.N. General Assembly

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

By: Corinne Graff, Ph.D.

World leaders are gathering in New York this week for the 2021 U.N. General Assembly against a backdrop of unprecedented global crises, including the continued spread of COVID-19 due to lack of access to vaccines; a growing hunger crisis as more people around the world die every day from starvation than from COVID-19; and the fact that roughly one percent of the world’s entire population — or one in every 97 people — is now forcibly displaced. These humanitarian challenges are compounded by a generational climate crisis and rising tensions with Russia and China that will need to be carefully managed. 

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global Policy

China and the U.S. Exit from Afghanistan: Not a Zero-Sum Outcome

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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

By: Andrew Scobell, Ph.D.

It has become fashionable to characterize recent events in Afghanistan as a loss for the United States and a win for China. This zero-sum interpretation framed in the narrow context of U.S.-China relations is too simplistic and off the mark. The reality is far more complex and nuanced. The end of the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan and the collapse of that country’s pro-Western government do not automatically translate into significant Chinese gains, nor do they trigger a swift Beijing swoop to fill the vacuum in Kabul left by Washington.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global Policy

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