land - Concord Italia

State of play in improving land and
water governance:
Increasing agreement and recognition, but which
standard and what purposes, whose voices?
J. Franco, TNI Agrarian Justice programme
Remarkable developments on the land front --
CFS Tenure Guidelines
◦ Unprecedented example of consultative process of formulating an
authoritative international standard
◦ Robust effort to practice LVC principle of ‘Not About Us Without Us’
◦ Debated and dialogued directly with SMs
◦ Agreed on and adopted by governments
◦ Relatively high degree of political legitimacy
◦ Voluntary character, but still seems to be recalibrating the terrain on
which political struggles for control of land+, land policy and related
visions of development continue to occur (note previous slide)
◦ Excludes water
◦ Like any regulatory measure or initiative, open to competing
interpretations and uses
◦ Establishes a moral imperative that wasn’t there before
◦ Like any regulatory measure or initiative, open to competing
interpretations and uses
Government initiatives
Global Donor Platform database on land
 The overall aim of the initiative is to improve donor coordination and to support
implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines for the Responsible Governance of Tenure of
Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the Context of National Food Security.
 469 projects 119 countries $2.8 Billion
 Includes projects prior to May 2012 adoption
 Could include TG-driven interventions; could also
include interventions not entirely, automatically or
necessarily consistent with core TG principles –
area for further study and new research?
 EU page shows 44 projects in 31 countries
EU Factsheet
Available at
Some highlights of EU support
Inclusive approach: Multi-stakeholder platforms
Coordinating mechanisms: Since 2003 EU Working group on land
 Prepares common approaches to global initiatives (TGs, G8, post-2015 indicators)
 Coordinates participation at major events
 Knowledge and information sharing
Current programmes
◦ 2004 EU Land Policy Guidelines; financed 92 projects since 2004
◦ Current portfolio covers Africa, LatAm, Asia, MENA worth total €135
million at global-continental, regional-national levels
 FAO for TG
 €400,000 for 3rd round
 €1.2 million for early implementation
African Land Policy Initiative -- €8.8 million for 2010-2015
International Land Coalition since 2006 -- €4 million for 2013-2016
Sub-Saharan Africa – €20.5 million + €33 million (new)
Latin America – €31 million
Asia -- €23.5 million
MENA -- €10 million in Egypt
Political commitments at the G8
◦ EU will follow partnerships with 2 countries (South Sudan and Niger)of
the total 7 partnerships under the 2013 Land Transparency Initiative
Closer look
New EU programme to
strengthen land governance
in 10 African countries
Announced 9 April 2014
before ‘High-Level Conference
on Property Rights: Land
Tenure Security, the Missing
Key to Eradicating Poverty’,
jointly organized by EC and EP
[video available at:
This new EU programme in
SSA is to include application
of some TGs – key question:
which ones will it take up and
how will it take these up?
Excerpt from press release -Key questions regarding investment: which
standard? what purpose?
TG implementation in practice:
Emerging issues and concerns
How inclusive?
◦ Participation in multistakeholder platforms uneven (both who and how)
◦ Context matters, and so what steps taken to identify and address
particular challenges and are these being done in the same spirit of how
the TGs were formulated? Who is sitting at the table?
◦ Case of fame: Mali? Case of shame: Myanmar
Which standard?
◦ Standard being implemented is uneven -- which provisions? which
◦ Implementation is interpretation, and so far greater emphasis by those
actors who are mobilizing seems to be on technical support for land
mapping, land registration, land titling along the lines of conventional
◦ Example: ‘property rights’ vs. ‘legitimate tenure rights’
◦ Areas targeted for implementation very uneven, mainly (exclusively?) in
the global South, but not necessarily correlated with broad+deep social
mobilization, and leaving out North America and Europe
EU water policies on eve of 2015
2000 EU Water Framework Directive
◦ Set 2015 to achieve ‘good water status’
◦ Attempt to look comprehensively at Europe’s water resources
and the overall aim of water protection – good water
management is more than just about distribution and treatment
◦ Also includes how land use-mgmt/ spatial planning effects
quantity and quality of water resources
2012 Blueprint to Safeguard Europe’s Water Resources
◦ Llikely to fall short by 2015 (roughly 50%), so how to achieve it?
◦ ‘Something better, something more, something new’
 Among others:
 Increase implementation of market mechanisms (pricing/ metering,
cost-recovery schemes)
 Increase integration of water policy objectives into other policy
areas, such as CAP
Issues and concerns
In general, global assessments of water scarcity often portray
scarcity as something natural and inevitable and tend to
obscure questions of equity, sustainability, distribution and
access (Mehta and Movik 2014)
Often do not:
◦ Disaggregate users and their entitlements
◦ Look at the politics of distribution
◦ Examine social relations underlying technological choices
In general, more attention must be given in policy
processes to:
◦ The functionality of water and equitable sharing
◦ The perspectives of especially marginalized and vulnerable
people and peoples
How does Europe’s water policy stand up in
relation to such issues and concerns?
Some possible issues and concerns
in the European context
Simply integrating water into existing policy may not
be enough or even appropriate -- and could even
intensify the problems around water sustainability,
access and distribution
This is because Europe is experiencing a worsening
land problem
◦ Land concentration, land grabbing, green grabbing,
‘artificialisation’, and shrinking access for prospective
◦ Existing policy does not appear to address these issues or
questions (may not even see them as ‘problems’)
◦ How are these trends impacting on water sustainability,
distribution, access and questions of equity?
◦ How will the proposed water policies impact on these
land problems?
Adoption of TGs marked an important new step in international standard
setting around land – both process and outcome remarkable!
New phase generates new dynamics and contestations over competing
meanings and purposes – this is to be expected since implementation
ultimately still an exercise in interpretation too – in a democracy both
dialogue and dissent are necessary and there must be room for diverse
starting points and diverse visions of development
One gap in the TGs was water -- how ongoing efforts to improve water
governance in Europe will play out remains to be seen
But …
◦ Will most likely have to address the issue of land governance as well (since land and
water are intertwined)
◦ And should take cues from the TGs on what kind of process is needed to produce
policy outcomes that many actors and forces – even competing ones -- can consider
worth investing in.
Thank you!