Land Portal | Securing Land Rights Through Open Data
The Digitization of Land Records: A Panacea for Land Conflicts?
8 July 2021

Location

Online
XX
Uganda
India
Global

Thursday, July 8th, 2:30-4PM IST (11AM - 12:30 PM CEST)

Organizers: 
National Council of Applied Economic Research
NRMC
Land Portal Foundation
Cadasta Foundation
Land Conflict Watch
IGAD Regional Women's Land Rights Conference
28 June 2021 to 30 June 2021

Location

Online
XX
Africa
Sudan
Eastern Africa
Djibouti
Eritrea
Ethiopia
Kenya
Somalia
South Sudan
Uganda

 

Organizers: 
Intergovernmental Authority on Development
ILC Africa
Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
Government of Sweden
Zambia Land Certificates
16 June 2021
Zambia

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Countries

Tea plantations in Sri Lanka in 2013, photo by Kosala Bandara, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

The island of Sri Lanka is 65,610 km²,  and is densely populated with 21.8 million people . The location, lying 50 km south of India, gave the island a strategic importance as trade shipping routes opened up around the world. This afforded attention from a number of European powers. Sri Lanka was colonised by the Portuguese in the 16th century, replaced by Dutch powers in the 17th and 18th centuries, and then the British up to independence in 1948. There is a pluralistic legal system, where a residual Roman-Dutch Law operates next to a British-style parliament and a French-style presidency but with few safeguards against abuse of power.  Economically, Sri Lanka carries a lower-middle-income status under World Bank measures.  However, this clouds a high level of income inequality, where 40% of the population live on less than 225 Sri Lankan rupees (1.2 USD) per day, and 70% of labour lies in the informal sector, without access to social welfare.

 

Ulaanbaatar - The Ger District, photo by Bob Glennan, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 license

Mongolia is a large land-locked country of 157 million hectares, bordering Russia to the north and China on all other sides. It is situated on high plateaus with an average altitude of 1,580m above sea level, and over 80% of the country above 1,000m. While much of the landscape in the Southern part of the country is characterised by rocky deserts, notably the Gobi Desert, and grassy semi-arid steppes, with little forest, there are also significant mountain ranges in the West, Central and Northern parts of the country. Ecological zones include alpine mountain zones, taiga, forest steppe, steppe, desert steppe and desert. With just over 3.2 million people in 2019, Mongolia is the least densely populated country in the world. Yet there are many environmental challenges relating to desertification, overgrazing of grasslands, and impacts from climate change.

 

Issues

With secure land tenure, Indigenous Peoples and local communities can realize human rights, achieve economic growth, protect the environment, and maintain cultural integrity. For centuries, Indigenous Peoples and local communities (IPLCs) have used, managed and depended on collectively-held land for food supplies, cultural and spiritual traditions, and other livelihood needs. Historically governed through customary tenure systems rooted in community norms and practices that often go back centuries, governments often consider such community land as vacant, idle, or state-owned property.  Statutory recognition and protection of indigenous and community land rights continues to be a major challenge.

Learn more about challenges concerning Indigenous & Community Land Rights.

Post-conflict situations remain strained for years and can easily relapse into violence during the first two decades. During this social, political, and economic transition phase, post-conflict countries are especially fragile and vulnerable. Increasingly acknowledged as a key driver or root cause for conflict, land is as much a critical relapse factor as it is a bottleneck to recovery [1]. In the aftermath of war, access to and control of land and natural resources often remains a sensitive issue for years which may precipitate tensions and challenge stability. At the same time, resolving land-related issues is significant to achieve sustainable and durable peace. Yet, it is just one item on a long list of issues that need to be addressed in post-conflict periods next to reconciliation and transitional justice processes, establishing security and a functioning state, economic recovery, and the rebuilding of social cohesion [2].

Learn more about land-related issues in post-conflict settings...

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