Improving accountability in agricultural investments: Reflections from legal empowerment initiatives in West Africa

June 2017
IIED (Lorenzo Cotula and Thierry Berger, eds)

Since 2014, a set of initiatives in Cameroon, Ghana and Senegal has worked to help people harness the law in order to have greater control over decisions that affect them in a process of legal empowerment. In the three countries, the initiative developed diverse approaches, responding to different local contexts and theories of change. Each embodied a distinctive combination of grassroots action, public advocacy and private sector engagement – through supporting junior lawyers in Cameroon, grassroots committees in Ghana and locally negotiated “land charters” in Senegal. In the final year of project implementation, the project teams met to distil lessons learned. This report presents the results of that work. It summarises insights from first-hand experiences of helping rural people exercise their rights and, ultimately, claim their own future.