• gold mining;
  • mono-industrial areas;
  • alternative development;
  • NGOs;
  • Roşia Montană


This study proposes a critical discussion of a recent gold-mining project at Roşia Montană, Romania and of the alternative development solutions for the area. The aim of the research is to examine the socio-economic consequences of the mining project proposed by the multinational company Roşia Montană Gold Corporation and the struggle of the resistance movement to the mining project for an alternative development, in order to understand the complexity of development processes in rural communities in post-communist Romania. In analysing the socio-economic risks involved in conventional development, we focus especially on revealing the intrinsic limits of mono-industrialism and on the issue of population displacement by development. In the second part of the paper we discuss the feasibility of alternative development solutions for the area. The paper relies on a theoretical framework that combines the critical literature on conventional development and the recent debates on grassroots development.