Following major retrenchments in the large-scale mining sector, as a direct result of the mining sector reforms that the government of Ghana undertook under its structural adjustment programme, and years of economic hardships, the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining (ASM) sector witnessed significant growth in the 1980s and 90s. The main objective of government and communities engaged in mining activities is to use the sector to generate employment and revenue to improve the living standards of the people in the mining areas specifically, and that of Ghanaians as a whole. Contrary to popular perception and the expectations of mining communities, these mining activities have often failed to bring about the much needed economic and social development.
The main objective of this study is to find out whether the mining communities have been able to benefit from ASM activities. This is to be achieved by examining the effects of the mining activities on such economic and social parameters as income levels, employment, agriculture (and other sectors of the rural economy), education, health, housing, migration and the local environment. The study used Nangodi, a small mining community in the Upper East Region of Ghana, as a case study. It hypothesized that the community has been negatively affected by the ASM activities. The study will test this proposition by analyzing data collected from the area and other secondary data.