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Land for Agricultural Development in the Era of 'Land Grabbing': A Spatial Exploration of the 'Marginal Lands' Narrative in Contemporary Ethiopia

"In response to concerns over the potential of land leases for new agricultural projects to displace rural populations and impact food security, the Ethiopian government asserts that only ‘marginal’, ‘barren’ or ‘wasteland’ is being leased to inve...

Conservation and Ecotourism on Privatised Land in the Mara Kenya: The Case of Conservancy Land Leases

"This paper investigates private sector investment in conservation and ecotourism through conservancy land leases in the Mara region of Kenya. In a recent and growing tourism development, groups of Maasai landowners are leasing their parcels of l...

An Investigation of the Political Economy of Land Grabs in Malawi: The Case of Kasinthula Cane Growers Limited (KCGL)

"This study aims to understand the nature of land grabs in Malawi and their implications on food security. It employs a political economy theoretical framework in the quest to establish different underlying interests held by different actors and h...

Commercialisation of Land in Namibia's Communal Land Areas: A Critical Look at Potential Irrigation Projects in Kavango East and Zambezi Regions

Large-scale land acquisitions by both foreign and local investors for agriculture, forestry and wildlife purposes, among others, remain a major challenge for African governments. The Namibian government through various ministries received proposal...

Large-scale Land Acquisitions in Zambia: Evidence to Inform Policy

Land in Zambia plays a vital role in sustaining livelihoods, ensuring food security and reducing poverty. If people are not able to access land (including communal interests, such as lands for grazing or access to water resources), they will be u...

Land Governance in Malawi: Lessons from Large-scale Acquisitions

"Over the past decade rural Malawians have witnessed a surge in large-scale land acquisitions for commercial agriculture that threaten their access, control and ownership of customary land. This policy brief presents cases of such ‘land grabs’ re...

Understanding Land Acquisitions in Namibia's Communal Land: Impacts and Policy Implications

The Namibian government received proposals from multinational agribusinesses to develop large-scale agricultural irrigation projects. While only a few of these proposed large-scale projects have materialised, the magnitude of their impacts on ru...

State and Land Legislation in Botswana

"This paper is structured as follows: The first section describes the terrain and context. This is followed by a section on the legal evolution of Botswana with the intention of tying it up with a premise of continuity between the colonial and pos...

A Fresh Start for Rural Development and Agrarian Reform?

"This brief shows how existing policies are bifurcated between BEE models for the better off and welfare for the poor. There is now a danger that the two ministries will replicate the dualism of the so-called ‘first’ and ‘second’ economies – an ap...

Management of some Commons in Southern Africa: Implications for Policy

"Profound transformations in communal land tenure systems are taking place in parts of southern Africa that have resulted from decades of interventions, particularly the shrinking of the commonage through capture of extensive tracts of lands by ...

Civil Society and Social Movements: Advocacy for Land and Resource Rights in Africa

"Civil society formations in Africa have historically played an important part in the establishment of organising people in the pursuit of common goals. The majority of Africa’s people reside in rural areas where they derive their livelihoods from...

The Interaction between the Land Redistribution Programme and the Land Market in South Africa: A Perspective on the Willing-Buyer/ Willing-Seller Approach

"In South Africa, the willing-buyer/willing-seller approach is frequently blamed for the fact that the government's redistribution programme has thus far fallen well short of expectations. To what extent is this judgement justified? Moreover, if ...

The Tragic African Commons: A Century of Expropriation, Suppresion and Subversion

"This paper examines the nature of the African commons as a property system; analyses the extent of damage which was inflicted upon it during one hundred years of exploitation, suppression and subversion; explains why, in spite of that damage, th...

Contested Land Tenure Reform in South Africa: The Namaqualand Experience

"The legacy of apartheid land policy in South Africa remains one of the most conspicuous manifestations of past injustices. To correct this legacy, diverse land reform efforts have centred on the constitutional mandate for land restitution, redis...

The Communal Land Rights Act and Women: Does the Act Remedy or Entrench Discrimination and the Distortion of the Customary?

"This paper discusses the likely impact of the Communal Land Rights Act (CLRA) of 2004 on the land rights of rural women. It asks whether the Act is likely to enhance or undermine tenure security, not only for women, but for rural people in genera...

Evaluating Land and Agrarian Reform in South Africa: Land use and Livelihoods

"This paper addresses how land reform can contribute to enhancing land-based livelihoods. The challenge for South Africa’s land and agrarian reform programme is to alleviate the constraints to production and, in so doing, to enhance land-based li...

Evaluating Land and Agrarian Reform in South Africa: Joint Ventures

"Joint ventures (JVs) are an increasingly common feature of the process of land and agrarian reform in South Africa. They involve black people who currently have land rights or who are land reform beneficiaries and will be receiving a government s...

Evaluating Land and Agrarian Reform in South Africa: Municipal Commonage

"This paper compares the performance of the Municipal Commonage Programme of the Department of Land Affairs (DLA) with the objectives stated in the White Paper on South African Land Policy (DLA 1997). This paper will review the extent to which t...

Waking up from the Dream: The Pitfalls of 'Fast-Track' Development on the Wild Coast of South Africa

"The main aim of this study was to explore the issues involved in reconciling the policy objectives of land reform, environmental conservation and the private sector profit-oriented rural development initiative in post apartheid South Africa. Rat...

Land and Agrarian Reform in South Africa: A Status Report, 2004

"The report reviews the achievements and shortcomings of land and agrarian reform in South Africa in the first decade of democracy and provides a description of the status of these initiatives as at 2004. Chapter 1 presents a brief historical back...

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