in: New Political Economy, first published 26.10.2022
The article explores the spatial dimension of the contested renegotiation of society-nature relations in the context of the oil palm boom in Indonesia. Drawing on qualitative research as well as on concepts of political ecology, materialist state theory and literature on the transnationalization and internationalisation of the state, it argues that conflicts in the context of the oil palm boom cannot merely be conceptualised as local negotiation processes for access to land, but are increasingly transnational in character. Particularly, transnational actors such as oil palm companies and environmental protection organisations as well as transnational regulatory systems such as private sustainability and carbon standards are increasingly relevant in structuring local conflicts. To illustrate how these transnational mechanisms of contestation and conflict resolution operate, the article's empirical focus lies on conflicts over land in the Indonesian province of Jambi on the island of Sumatra.