State of Land Information Consultancy | Land Portal

The Land Portal exists to nurture a vibrant online platform to inform and engage with partners, promoting open data and the sharing of best practices and stimulating debate and collaboration both on and offline. We provide a vital bridge for those grappling with complex land governance issues – from researchers and NGOs through to governments and grassroots communities – connecting people, facilitating dialogue and joining the dots between fragmented information.

The Land Portal was established in 2009 to create, curate and disseminate land governance information, helping to foster a more inclusive and accessible data landscape. Over the subsequent ten years, the Land Portal has grown to become an information gateway and resource base, a vibrant online community of users from around the world, and a trusted voice within the land governance sector globally.

We believe data and information are powerful tools for achieving our vision of a land governance system that benefits those with the most insecure land rights and the greatest vulnerability to landlessness. However, information sources remain highly fragmented, unstructured, poorly curated, represent a narrow range of perspectives, and continue to be published in ways that do not facilitate maximum discovery, engagement and reuse. Until policy and decision-makers, intermediaries and grassroots groups have access to the data and information they need to make sound decisions, their initiatives (programs, policies, campaigns) will fail to achieve maximum impact.

Raising awareness of “open data” – and the critical role it plays in realising tenure security for individuals and communities around the world – continues to be our greatest challenge. To this end, we make use of every possible conference, meeting and speaking engagement to promote the concept of “going open”, while recognising that, given the highly sensitive nature of land data (particularly for vulnerable communities), not everything can or should be made entirely open.

In 2019 the Land Portal developed the methodology for uncovering the State of Land Information (SOLI) on a country level. The SOLI seeks to provide an overview of publicly available data and information on key land issues from government and other stakeholders in targeted countries. The aim is to uncover land data and information at the country level and help to identify data and information gaps, with a view to establishing a baseline for targeted ‘information-based’ interventions for improving land governance. In 2021 the Land Portal together with the Open Data Charter developed and launched the Open Up Guide on Land Governance. It is a practical resource to be used by governments from developing countries to publish land-related data to improve data quality, availability, accessibility and use for improved citizen engagement, decision making and innovation. 

In the period 2021 – 2024 the Land Portal Foundation and the Open Data Charter intend to implement the Open Up Guide for Land Governance and develop SOLI reports for 10-12 countries in Africa and Latin America. 


Job Description

This description focuses on the State Of Land Information Consultancy for the following countries: Botswana, Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, Zambia.

The Consultant will have the primary responsibility for specific tasks and will report directly to the Land Information Management and Advocacy Consultant.

Principal Tasks & Responsibilities: 

The researcher will be responsible to conduct the research according to the Land Portal methodology and complete in the Dataset matrix with the findings of the scoping exercise.

Specific responsibilities and outputs relating to the State of Land Information Consultancy:

  • Undertake thorough desk research and scoping study in relation to the respective country in order to map and assess the state of land data and information primarily in government, but also consider other stakeholders, including Civil Society, Academia, Donors and others. The researcher will use the Land Portal methodology. This will primarily involve desktop research, but may also require outreach to various stakeholders and information providers in the country to ascertain a full picture of offline materials as well.

  • Provide an overview on the Open Data Policy Frameworks (Legal and Policy) in the respective country. During this process it is important to provide an overview on the rules, regulations, procedures and practices with regards to data sharing and management.

  • Complete the Land Portal dataset matrix with the findings of the scoping exercise. Offer the dataset matrix for review to identified experts and/or multi stakeholder platform to include any possible overlooked sources of information;

  • Draft and author State of Land Information report according to Land Portal template, to be published under a Creative Commons license;

  • Recommend improvements to the State of Land Information Research Methodology based on learnings and findings from the implementation to ensure the tool is informed by practical advice and fits to diverse contexts.

  • Participate in the bi-weekly exchange calls organized by the Land Information Management and Advocacy Consultant to share updates and experiences and discuss progress.

  • Using an open data methodology to conduct a final country workshop to discuss the state of land information, open data principles, harmonization with the national/local legal framework, local challenges and risks in data collection and sharing (including data privacy and ethical risks). The methodology (to be developed in conjunction with LP.

Specific deliverables and outputs relating to open data land management:

  • Report on the state of land information in the respective country and incorporate any changes and suggestions made by reviewers.

  • Conduct a final country workshop.

  • Recommend improvements to the State of Land Information Research Methodology.

Schedule of deliverables will be agreed upon with the Land Information Management and Advocacy Consultant 


The Open Land Data Management Consultant will report to the Land Information Management and Advocacy Consultant. For some of the communications & engagement related tasks s/he might be asked to coordinate with the Communications Specialist.


This consultancy is expected to start as soon as possible and be completed over a period of 3 months, or as agreed between the Consultant and the Land Portal Foundation. The Consultant will be working from home.  


Please submit your resume detailing your experience specific to the required tasks and responsibilities. State clearly the country or countries for which you wish to be considered and outline the relevant country experience in relation to each of those countries for which you wish to be considered.

Please submit by 22 August 2021 your resume and cover letter detailing your experience specific to the required tasks and responsibilities by emailing Include “Application for State of Land Information Consultancy” in the subject line.

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Various news items related to land governance are posted on the Land Portal every day by the Land Portal users, from various sources, such as news organizations and other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. The copyright lies with the source of the article; the Land Portal Foundation does not have the legal right to edit or correct the article, nor does the Foundation endorse its content. To make corrections or ask for permission to republish or other authorized use of this material, please contact the copyright holder.

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