The future of land: commercial pressures and the case for systemic law reform to secure rural land rights

May 2020
Lorenzo Cotula (IIED)

Chapter in a book, “Rethinking land reform in Africa, opportunities and challenges” by the African Natural Resources Centre, edited by Cosmas Milton Obote Ochieng for the African Development Bank. A think piece reflecting on changing commercial pressures on land in low and middle-income countries; the role of law in shaping the ways those pressures manifest themselves; the limits of business standards in driving systemic change; and the case for comprehensive law reform to secure rural land rights. Includes foreign investment, the commodity boom and bust, the spread of special economic zones, understanding the legal structures of dispossession, the case for reform, and moving forward.