Raphael Deberdt

Post Doctorate Fellow


Raphael Deberdt is a postdoctoral fellow in the Mining Engineering Department at Mines. He has years of experience in the conflict minerals and cobalt field and specialized on responsible sourcing and production of critical minerals. He completed an anthropology PhD on artisanal cobalt mining in the African Copperbelt at the University of British Columbia in 2023. He has worked extensively with nonprofits, governments, and industry actors in the minerals responsible sourcing field, including Responsible Sourcing Network, WikiRate, IMPACT, the United Nations University, UNDP, the European Commission, the OECD, Google, and Microsoft among others. He advised some of the world’s largest companies on their implementation of the OECD Guidance and supported the development of OECD-aligned due diligence systems for jewellery and trading companies and the creation of standards, including the Cobalt Industry Responsible Assessment Framework (CIRAF). He also performed audits on cobalt treatment units in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Academically, he is now focusing on the impacts of the green transition and its thirst for minerals and increasingly research the development of new mining frontiers in the space and deep seas. At Mines he focuses on the extraction of critical minerals within the United States and the impacts of new mines, reprocessing, and re-mining on neighboring communities. His research has been published in Antipode, the Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Law and Social Inquiry, Resources Policy, The Extractive Industries and Society and Society and Natural Resources. Beyond his PhD, he holds an MA in International Relations from Sciences Po Lyon, an MA in African Studies from Stanford University, an LLM in African Legal Studies from Paris 1 Sorbonne and an MA in Anthropology from the EHESS.  


Brown Hall 210