Issue 54.1 | Global land grabs

Volume 54 issue 1 | Global land grabs

The first issue of Development 54 starts the one year debate on sustainability by looking at the dilemma of the current global land grabs in Africa, Asia and Latin America. It engages academics and researchers of the Land Research Action Network and of the University of Utrecht in a hot debate on land speculation today. The journal issue tackles land, commodity and food speculation. It explores the implications for an equitable and sustainable development and looks at how to ensure that any benefits from foreign land development are passed on to local people.

Table of contents | Editorial


Launch event: The issue was launched on March 24, 2011, at Utrecht University, during the seminar 'The global land rush: What's real and what are the myths? Rushing for solutions' organized by IDS, LANDac, in cooperation with the SID Netherland Chapter. The seminar brought together experts and journal authors to discuss the large-scale land acquisitions, and assess the implications for equitable and sustainable development. It aimed at providing a better understanding of what is going on under the name of land grab, the implications for the different stakeholders, the effects on 'local' people, and what possible solutions can be identified. Final report

Online launch:  With additional articles on land grabbing and food insecurity in Africa and an interview with Mike Taylor of International Land Coalition.

The New land rush in Africa. An interview with Mike Taylor (ILC) 

The land rush is not new. It is a process of land acquisition dating back to the colonial period and perhaps even earlier. However, what is new is the set of political and geopolitical dynamics currently driving this phenomenon. Land use in Africa is basically shifting from being a subsistence resource to becoming a reserve of food and energy security to secure the increasing demands of water, food and energy of the richer nations. Read more

The great African land rush, by Angela Zarro

Reading about the land rush taking place in Africa is quite puzzling. Information are tepid and occasional. The first impression is that this process is silently underway, to some extents taken for granted, with no clear understanding of boundaries and differences among land rush, foreign direct investments and land grab. Read more

SID Trend Monitoring Report: Drivers of regional food security

Growing food insecurity is a reality in the region. Based on this observation, the third SID trend monitoring report seeks to provide a regional overview on the topic, by looking at some of the key drivers (weather conditions, climate change, conflict) as described in news and reports, by summarizing the GHEA countries' food security outlook in 2010 and by focusing on the new reality of the great African land rush. Read more