Linking to Lands Deals Politics Initiative (LDPI)

ldpi-logoThe FAC research theme will be linked to the international Land Deals Politics Initiative (LDPI), launched in January 2010.

The objective of this initiative is to provide a platform and network to generate solid evidence through detailed, field-based research that incorporates and complements a range of policy-oriented donor and NGO-led reviews, as well as more activist political work. {jathumbnail off}

Research Focus

The research will focus on the politics of land deals– something often lacking in the current debate – and therefore we embed the commercial act of exchanging land titles into a broader framework concerned with ‘land deal politics’.

In the LDPI we will aim for a broad framework encompassing the political economy,political ecology and political sociology of land deals centred on food, biofuels, minerals and conservation. Working within the broad analytical lenses of these three fields, we will use as a general framework the four key questions in agrarian political economy:

  1. who owns what?
  2. who does what?
  3. who gets what?
  4. what do they do with the surplus wealth that has been created?
  5. We will add two additional key questions, highlighting political dynamics between groups and social classes:

  6. ‘what do they do to each other?’, and
  7. ‘how do changes in politics get shaped by dynamic ecologies, and vice versa?

Research Outcomes

Through this initiative, FAC, with LDPI, hopes to engage in dialogue with social movements, activists, policy makers, and concerned academics to produce data and discuss their implications.

LDPI hopes to build a public database with different viewpoints, studies and surveys outlining the extent, nature and impact of changes in land use and land property relations around the world.

Joint Effort

FAC is a core member of the LDPI, and the land theme will contribute to the wider initiative through supporting work in Africa – initially through a small grants fund, and later through some more concerted, in-depth research.

The ‘Land Deal Politics Initiative’ (LDPI) is initially a joint effort of Initiatives in Critical Agrarian Studies (ICAS) at Saint Mary’s University in Canada (Saturnino ‘Jun’ Borras Jr. – the LDPI international secretariat), the Future Agricultures Consortium at the Institute for Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex (Ian Scoones), PLAAS at the University of the Western Cape (Ruth Hall), Resource, Environment and Livelihoods (RELIVE) at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) in the Netherlands (Ben White) and the Polson Institute for Global Development at Cornell University (Wendy Wolford).