State of Land Information in Malawi – An Open Data Assessment

March 2023
Charl-Thom Bayer, Edward Chikhwenda and Keitha Booth (Land Portal)

This State of Land Information (SOLI) report from the Land Portal assesses the state of land data in Malawi against principles of land data openness, land information availability and accessibility, and overall good land governance. The report is one of a series produced by the Land Portal, featuring in-depth analysis of country level land information and making recommendations for targeted interventions to improve compliance with international open data standards. The report identifies the various public sector sources of land data and information in Malawi, including the Ministry of Lands, the Ministry of Local Government, the Malawi Spatial Data Platform (MASDAP), the Malawi Housing Corporation, Traditional Land Administration Management offices, and the Malawi National Statistical Office, and examines the availability of land data and information they provide according to six key land data categories. It also reviews several private sector holders of land information in the country. Malawi’s legal framework for data governance and for opening up information is reviewed, and Malawi’s international and national commitments to access to information and its instruments for data and information governance are examined to assess for transparency about the purpose for collecting, storing and disseminating information. The report concludes with an evaluation of the openness of land data and information in Malawi by assessing it against 10 international best practice criteria. The report concludes that, overall, the state of land information in Malawi is only slightly open.