Securing and regulating land tenure: putting the issues before the tools. Some of the obstacles to coherent policies

January 2011
Vincent Basserie and Patrick D’Aquino (Land Tenure and Development Technical Committee)

Most West African countries are in the process of reforming their land policies. Discussions tend to focus on the tools and mechanisms for securing and regulating land tenure. While tools are certainly a vital part of the process, it is important to understand that the same tool can serve very different interests depending on how it is conceived and used. Are we sufficiently aware of the diversity of issues that may be associated with a land policy? And what do we know about the real effects that tools have on all these different issues?