Our blog

Opinions and comments from Future Agricultures researchers on agricultural politics, science and society in Africa


Latest articles

Land and agriculture in Zimbabwe following land reform
August 17, 2017 / Our blog
In May, I was invited to give a talk on Zimbabwe’s land reform and its aftermath by a great new student initiative at SOAS (School of African and Asia Studies) focused on agriculture and development in Africa. The event was

Land, livelihoods and small towns
August 5, 2017 / Our blog
In early June, I was invited by the Africa Research Institute in London to a panel discussion held to launch a new ARI Counterpoints piece by Beacon Mbiba on ‘missing urbanisation’ in Zimbabwe. Beacon’s piece raised some important questions about

A new land administration system for Zimbabwe
July 29, 2017 / Our blog
The Zimbabwe Land Commission, established as a result of the new national Constitution, has a major task ahead of it. It is vital that an independent Commission looks at the range of land issues in the round. The complexities presented

Getting agriculture moving: finance and credit
July 29, 2017 / Our blog
Getting the agricultural sector financed is a key challenge in Zimbabwe, and links concretely to land administration challenges discussed in previous blogs in this series. Making both places and people bankable is a priority, but responses have to be geared

Beyond the freehold title obsession: generating land tenure security
July 29, 2017 / Our blog
Zimbabwe has a regime of multi-form tenure, with multiple tenure types associated with different areas of land (freehold, lease, permit, communal and state land). This provides a flexibility in tenure arrangements, with each appropriate to different uses. For any form

Medium-scale farming for Africans: The ‘Native Purchase Areas’ in Zimbabwe
June 29, 2017 / Our blog
The Native Purchase Areas were established as a result of the 1930 Land Apportionment Act, following the recommendations of the 1925 Morris Carter Commission. They were designed as compensation for the fact that Africans were not allowed to purchase land

Land dispute resolution in Zimbabwe
June 29, 2017 / Our blog
The reconfiguring of land use and ownership through land reform has inevitably generated a range of disputes. Having a clear, transparent approach for dispute resolution is essential. This is a key task for the Zimbabwe Land Commission, as this third

The pros and cons of commercial farming models in Africa
June 22, 2017 / Our blog
Colonialism brought large-scale farming to Africa, promising modernisation and jobs – but often dispossessing people and exploiting workers. Now, after several decades of independence, and with investor interest growing, African governments are once again promoting large plantations and estates. But

Tobacco and contract farming in Zimbabwe
May 29, 2017 / Our blog
How does commercial agriculture – and particularly contract farming – affect agrarian dynamics? We have been looking at this question in work in Mvurwi area in Mazowe district over the last few years. New work under the Agricultural Policy Research

What prospects for the next generation of rural Zimbabweans?
May 2, 2017 / Our blog
After the brief interlude last week, this blog concludes the series of five pieces on youth in the new resettlement areas. Our studies across Zimbabwe have shown how school leavers imagine their futures, but also how in practice these visions