Promoting Land Rights in Africa: How do NGOs Make a Difference?

October 2002
Nazneen Kanji, Carla Braga and Winnie Mitullah (IIED)

Investigates the effectiveness of NGOs’ strategies and methods to influence land policy reform. Report based on a study of 7 NGOs promoting land reform and land rights in Mozambique and Kenya. Covers country contexts – NGO sectors and land policy reform; NGOs in the policy process – roles and relationships; assessing the impact of NGOs on land policy processes; key findings and lessons. Studies show that legislation and regulations can be modified, reinterpreted or ignored during implementation, when local level power relations become critical. Thus building the capacity of community groups to take informed action is critical to long-term and sustainable pro-poor policy influence, and monitoring implementation is key for NGOs. Those in the study all feel they need to engage directly with communities if they are to gain legitimacy for advocacy and monitoring