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Center for Energy Studies

The Role of Foreign Direct Investment in Resource-Rich Regions: An Inquiry into the Resource Curse and Sustainable Development

Indigenous natural resource wealth can provide a basis for robust economic development and broad macroeconomic development, especially when there is appropriate governance and robust legal and regulatory institutions. But, a lack of institutional fortitude in many regions around the world has contributed to failure to translate resource wealth into broader macroeconomic wealth. This observation has resulted in the implication that natural resource wealth dooms a region to poverty and corruption – the “resource curse.” However, the resource curse is by no means universally accepted, giving rise to an exploration of how its manifestation can be avoided. From the perspective of a firm in the extractive resource industry, institutional frameworks (or lack thereof) in different regions present risks that must be considered, and if possible, mitigated. This, in turn, presents a number of important questions, including but not limited to: What is the proper role of the private sector, and what obligation does local government have? How do contracts and overall political stability influence investment? What role should foreign investors play in supporting long-term, sustainable regional development? 


Research Prospectus


Executive Summary (forthcoming)

Kenneth. B Medlock III, Keily Miller

"The collapse of the Venezuelan oil industry: The role of above-ground risks limiting FDI" (forthcoming, under review)

Francisco Monaldi, Igor Hernández, José La Rosa

"Confronting the Resource Curse: Advice for Investors and Partners" (forthcoming)

David Goldwyn, Andrea Claybough

"Shale Renders the ‘Obsolescing Bargain’ Obsolete: Political Risk and Foreign Investment in Argentina’s Vaca Muerta" (forthcoming)

Gabe Collins, Mark Jones, Jim Krane, Ken Medlock, Francisco Monaldi

"The Case of the Gulf Cooperation Council" (forthcoming, under review)

Paul Stevens

"The Geopolitics of FDI: Can Weak States Deter Hegemons Using Foreign Investment?" (forthcoming, under review)

Jim Krane

"Resource curse dynamics, the corporate license to operate, and the potential of direct cash dividends" (forthcoming, under review)

Todd Moss

"Japan’s FDI to the Middle East Energy Sectors: The Objectives, Outcomes and Implications (forthcoming, under review)

Ken Koyama

"Permian Basin Energy Producers Invest in Community Infrastructure: Motivations, Impacts, and Implications for Corporate Citizenship" (forthcoming)

Gabe Collins

"Interactions between foreign direct investment, foreign aid and host governments: Is aid a help or hindrance for broader development?" (forthcoming, under review)

Michelle Foss

"What attracts FDI in resource-rich regions? Risk, reward and the calculus of investment "(forthcoming, under review)

Peter Hartley, Ken Medlock