Dr Kathryn Sturman is an international relations specialist in resource governance and policy considerations of mining for human security and development.

Kathryn's research focus is on the political dynamics shaping the extractive industries globally, particularly in resource-rich developing countries of Africa and South East Asia. In 2017 she led a research project on assessing potential interoperability of mineral sustainability standards, with case studies of transparency and conflict minerals initiatives in Africa's Great Lakes region, and the implementation of the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative. Multi-stakeholder governance for greater transparency across the mining life cycle is a further topic under investigation, as well as comparative analysis of the implementation of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in Australia and Asia Pacific. Previous research for CSRM includes a project on the impact of extractive industries on political settlements and conflict in East Africa (2015/16); and comparative lessons in local food procurement by mining companies in Mozambique and Tanzania (2014).

Kathryn holds a PhD in international relations from Macquarie University. She also holds a Masters of Arts in Political Studies (awarded cum laude) from the University of Cape Town. Prior to joining CSRM as a Senior Research Fellow in 2012, Kathryn was program head of the Governance of Africa’s Resources Program at the South African Institute of International Affairs. She conducted research and policy development in the minerals, oil and gas, and logging sectors in a number of African countries. She has conducted research on various aspects of African politics, in particular the African Union, since working as a senior researcher for the Institute for Security Studies, 2001-2004. Kathryn was a speechwriter and researcher in the Parliament of South Africa from 1997-2001. 


Kathryn has provided independent analysis, case studies, briefings, training and consultancies for a wide range of mining stakeholders, including industry professionals, government officials and international and regional organisations, such as the World Bank, UNDP, the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the Minerals Council of Australia (MCA).


Current academic collaborations include: 
- research on mining transparency and multi-stakeholder governance with Andrea Shaw, Program Leader on Mining for Sustainable Development for Transparency International Australia (funded by SMI Collaboration Seed Grant, 2017);
- a paper on 'Stakeholder Engagement and Legitimacy in Africa's Governance Architecture', with Dr David Mickler, Politics Dept of University of Western Australia;
- an edited volume with Prof. Saleem Ali and Nina Collins (co-editors), on 'Africa's Mineral Fortune' for University of Chicago Press.

Key Publications

Weldegiorgis, Fitsum S., Mesfin, Berouk and Sturman, Kathryn (2016) Looking for oil, gas and mineral development in Ethiopia: prospects and risks for the political settlement. Extractive Industries and Society, 4 1: 151-162. doi:10.1016/j.exis.2016.12.003

Danoucaras, Anastasia N., Adam, Alidu Babatu, Sturman, Kathryn, Collins, Nina K. and Woodley, Alan (2016) A pilot study of the Social Water Assessment Protocol in a mining region of Ghana. Water International, 41 3: 392-408. doi:10.1080/02508060.2015.1127199

Lillywhite, S., Kemp, D. and Sturman, K., (2015). Mining, resettlement and lost livelihoods: Listening to the Voices of Resettled Communities in Mualadzi, Mozambique. Oxfam: Melbourne.

Sturman, Kathryn and Hayatou, Aissatou (2010). The peace and security council of the African Union: from design to reality. In Ulf Engel and João Gomes Porto (Ed.), Africa's New Peace and Security Architecture (pp. 57-75) London, United Kingdom: Ashgate.

Du Preez, Mari-Lise and Sturman, Kathryn (2009) Seeing the wood for the trees: forestry governance in the DRC Johannesburg, South Africa: South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA)


Dr Sturman manages program and project funding of approximately AUD400,000 a year, equating to over AUD1 million during her tenure at SMI.