Mathew Henderson’s debut poetry collection 'The Lease' (2012) stands out in the field of Canadian petro-poetry because it explores the environmental and social
fractures caused by Canadian oil production from inside its labor sphere. An analysis of the collection from a perspective informed by Marxist ecocriticism, that is, an analysis which pays special attention to the effects of capitalist modes of production on ecosocial relations, reveals texts that struggle for and at the same time sabotage a bluecollar aesthetic of petroleum culture. Henderson’s poems both construct and actively subvert an imagined working-class, oil-fuelled masculinity marked by a celebration
of heterosexuality and technological domination over the land. The Lease dramatizes the transformation of the speaker from a country boy into a poet of the oil patch, thus retracing the shift of the oft idealized Canadian prairie from a pastoral space to a drilling and waste-dumping ground. It is this deconstruction of the oilman and of his relationship to the land, I argue, that shores up a distinctly proletarian eco-poetics of oil, rooted not only in an experience of the land, but in living off the land in a present and future that weighs heavily on nature and its ability to satisfy humanity’s growing energy demand.
Much attention is being paid to the planning of public-private partnership (PPP) infrastructure projects. The subsequent implementation phase – when the contract has been signed and the project ‘starts rolling’ – has received less attention. However, sound agreements and good intentions in project planning can easily fail in project implementation. Implementing PPP infrastructure projects is complex, but what does this complexity entail? How are projects managed, and how do public and private partners cooperate in implementation? What are effective management strategies to achieve satisfactory outcomes? This is the fi rst set of questions addressed in this thesis. Importantly, the complexity of PPP infrastructure development imposes requirements on the evaluation methods that can be applied for studying these questions. Evaluation methods that ignore complexity do not create a realistic understanding of PPP implementation processes, with the consequence that evaluations tell us little about what works and what does not, in which contexts, and why. This hampers learning from evaluations. What are the requirements for a complexity-informed evaluation method? And how does qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) meet these requirements? This is the second set of questions addressed in this thesis.