Journal of Alpine Research / Revue de géographie alpine

Resource Is Not Yet Exhausted: Toward a Renewal of the Concept

Often evoked like an ultimate objective, yet never clearly defined, the notion of resource constitutes an operational lever more in the field of actors than in the field of critical thought. The term alone arouses strong expectations; its use verges on marketing, including in scholarly literature. Figure 1. “Resource”: hope for a better life The magnet was ordered by a local pizzeria on the occasion of the 2014 ForumAlpinum, which was titled “Resources.” It was given to us by the owners when they learned that we were participating in the Forum. Photograph: Mari Oiry-Varacca. If a concept constitutes a currency of thought, shared values making the exchange possible; it can undergo inflation, be restruck—criticized, examined, its interpretation contested—and it is used in fertile ways in the exchange of ideas. As far as we can see, the notion of resource, that “something which, developed, can yield economic prospects”, isn’t used as a concept—neither in regard to the Alpes, at the ForumA...

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