Land transformation has been at the centre of the economic growth of post-colonial Asia. In the 1990s, many Asian countries embraced economic liberalization and speculative business interests in land began to replace the state’s control of land for developmental purposes. The growing demand for land by corporations and private investors has fuelled several regional land rush waves in Asia, bringing them directly in conflict with communities that require these lands for their occupations and survival.
The following report is the overview of a three-year study to scope the nature and extent of land use change in the three postcolonial Asian countries of India, Indonesia, and Myanmar. The study analyses primary data on land use approvals for mining, hydropower, industrial estates and plantations over the last three decades as these sectors have caused large-scale land transformations. It also draws from an extensive body of land use studies done by government, academics, international donors, investor coalitions, and non-governmental organizations.
The overall objective of the study is to understand how communities secure land and natural resources that are intrinsic to their basic human survival and livelihoods and to what effect. For researchers, activists, and organizations engaged in supporting communities facing impacts caused by land use change, this project provides a useful baseline of community-level strategies used and remedies extracted in the three countries.
This report is an overview of the study in all three countries. You can also access country-specific study reports for India, Indonesia, and Myanmar, each with detailed case studies and information on the range of laws and institutions that are directly relevant to land and environmental conflicts in each of these countries.
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Namati: Innovations in Legal Empowerment
Namati is an international organization that tests the potential of legal empowerment through innovative interventions and research. Through our work, we seek a better understanding of the impacts of legal empowerment and the most effective mechanisms for achieving them.
The Centre for Policy Research (CPR) has been one of India’s leading public policy think tanks since 1973. The Centre is a non-profit, non-partisan independent institution dedicated to conducting research that contributes to the production of high quality scholarship, better policies, and a more robust public discourse about the structures and processes that shape life in India.