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The Framework of Resources and Techno-Managerialism

The Framework of Resources and Techno-Managerialism

(p.66) Three The Framework of Resources and Techno-Managerialism
Abundant Earth
Eileen Crist
University of Chicago Press

“The Framework of Resources and Techno-Managerialism” continues investigating the connection between human supremacy and the ecological crisis, focusing on how it manifests in our time. With the modern turn into a secular and industrial period, domination over nature has deepened and biodiversity destruction is foreshadowing a mass extinction. Today, human supremacy is no longer grounded in metaphysical narratives of God-sanctioned access to the nonhuman realm. Instead, the historical legacy of anthropocentrism is entrenched by means of two prominent framings of the human-nature relationship: the frameworks of resources and techno-managerialism. The most conventional way to reference the nonhuman realm is through the concept of (natural) resources, and its sundry spinoffs (such as fisheries, livestock, and natural capital), which implicitly represent the world as human-owned and set it up as an instrumental field. In parallel, the framework of techno-managerialism approaches ecological problems (that ensue from treating the world as resources) piecemeal, addressing them via technological innovations and fixes and via managerial interventions and adjustments. The chapter canvases concrete example of techno-managerialism from desalination and mega-dams to genetic engineering and geoengineering. It argues that construing the natural world as resources and addressing challenges in a techno-managerial register evade questioning the supremacist worldview.

Keywords:   natural resources, technological fix, managerialism

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