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Odumosu-Ayanu awarded grant to research oil and gas contract models in West and Central Africa

Ibironke Odumosu-Ayanu, assistant professor at the College of Law, has been awarded a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Development Grant worth $71,305 for her project entitled “Local Communities and Transnational Oil and Gas Contracts in West and Central Africa” 

Odumosu-Ayanu’s research project investigates the viability of using enforceable transnational contracts to regulate the often-difficult relationships between local communities, governments and investors involved in the oil and gas industry. Through her research using select multijurisdictional projects in West and Central Africa as case studies, Odumosu-Ayanu seeks to develop a tripartite transnational contract model that incorporates all these actors as parties.

“The research is based on the premise that affording local communities legal protection that extends beyond statute has the potential to significantly limit local community-industry disagreements, foster sustainable development of resources and provide mutual benefits for investors, local communities and governments,” said Odumosu-Ayanu. “It also protects peoples’ agency and deliberately fosters self-determination.” 

While primarily a scholarly endeavor that is positioned to make original scholarly contributions, Odumosu-Ayanu said that the project has significant relevance outside the academic community. “It has the potential to facilitate better understanding of contracts as governance mechanisms in the oil and gas industry and the place of local communities in those mechanisms.”