ANT Stakeholder Action Mapping Tool

What is it?


The purpose of this tool is to present a working alternative to existing stakeholder and social licence mapping techniques. This method offers a dynamic approach to identifying and responding to stakeholders based on extensive research into stakeholder views, drivers, and corresponding actions.


Most stakeholder engagement frameworks aim to navigate around stakeholder views and often exclude those that might impact the approvals timeline. Our research demonstrates that this approach does not work in the long term, as stakeholders reassert themselves in various ways throughout the approvals process, disrupting the timeline and blowing out project costs.  


This method and the terms we use are based on the work of Bruno Latour, Michel Callon, and John Law, who collectively developed Actor-Network Theory (ANT). ANT is a useful method for mapping stakeholders because it decentres the organisation, recognises the dynamic nature of stakeholder views, and highlights the actions that stakeholders can - and do - take to make their views heard.

How to use it


We have outlined two ways to use this ANT method, depending on whether it is being used to look back over an approvals process to understand what happened (the Retrospective method), or to map possible stakeholders at the beginning of the approvals process (the Predictive method). Each method is very different to the other, so we recommend using the one that is more appropriate to your situation.

What will the maps look like?


If you would like to look at examples of what the retrospective mapping might look like you can access the ANT Maps produced as part of this research project below. Each map, linked below, covers a key issue in relation to the Carmichael Coal Mine case study.