Home Forum Research My PhD and CasP Reply To: My PhD and CasP

Adam Marshall
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Thanks Blair. Yes, I suspected as much. For the purposes of my research, I’m not necessarily looking to chart the capitalization of these private firms. It’s more about acknowledging their size, the specific investments they’ve made in fracking, and identifying some of the strategies and tactics they’ve used to try and influence social processes in favour of their pro-fracking agenda. That said, I am planning to use the differential capitalization of AJ Lucas – a small-cap firm who put all their eggs in the UK fracking basket – as an (imperfect) proxy indicator for the on-going redistributions of power between the pro- and anti-fracking movements in the context of this conflict.

I would justify this in the following way: Because AJ Lucas is a small-cap firm that bet the house on fracking (through its investment in Cuadrilla Resources), its share price is extremely sensitive to the fortunes of UK shale gas. For example, at various times, its valuation has risen in response to pro-fracking legislation and policy announcements; and moved in the opposite direction when the sector received bad news – often due to the actions/pressure of anti-fracking campaigners. Most notably, when the government announced a fracking moratorium following a series of fracking-induced earthquakes at AJ Lucas/Cuadrilla’s exploration site in Lancashire. Given the above, plus the fact that the UK fracking lobby includes many more actors than AJ Lucas (several of which could be described as dominant capital), I think its justifiable to use AJ Lucas’ differential capitalization as an (imperfect) proxy indicator for the ongoing (re)distribution of power between the pro and anti fracking movments during the course of this conflict.

I’d be interested to hear people’s thoughts on these ideas 🙂