Parallel with the increasing liberalisation of the Congolese economy since the turn of the century has been the increasing delegation of previously state-held functions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to corporate actors, and in particular transnational mining corporations (TNMCs). This has been theoretically justified by an understanding of the collapse of the Congolese state in the 1990s as due primarily to government corruption and mismanagement. Grounded in an alternative historical interpretation of this collapse, and based on interviews and a review of the literature which reveals the limited impact of this shift on local development in the main mining regions of the DRC, this chapter explores the possibilities for harnessing the presence of TNMCs to support the reinstitution of processes of state-led local development. It is argued that achieving this will require maximising state capture of the surplus created by industrial mining and the redistribution of this surplus to local government structures, or the ‘decentralised territorial entities’. The main challenges and opportunities surrounding these processes are identified and discussed. Findings are based on research conducted between January and March 2016 in Kinshasa and six of the DRC’s major mining provinces.

Radley, B. (2016). The limits of corporate social responsibility and the possibilities for harnessing mining to reinstitute processes of state-led local development in the DRC. In L'Afrique des Grands Lacs Annuaire, 2015-2016 (pp. 169–186). Retrieved from