Alexander De Juan / Daniel Geissel / Jann Lay / Rebecca Lohmann

Large-Scale Land Deals and Social Conflict: Evidence and Policy Implications

GIGA Working Papers | 2022

  • Abstract

    How do large-scale land acquisitions (LSLAs) increase the risk of conflict, and what kind of policies can mitigate this effect? We address these questions with a systematic and poli-cy-oriented synthesis of prior research. First, we suggest a simple conceptual framework linking LSLAs to social conflict through relative deprivation. Second, we present empirical evidence on the associations between land investments and social conflict, drawing on pre-existing quantitative and qualitative studies as well as on own descriptive analyses and case studies. Taken together, this evidence suggests that conflicts accompany a sub-stantive share of LSLAs (10 to 20 percent). Specifically, contentious dynamics often start with violations of community interests, which spur largely peaceful community protests that trigger coercion and violence at the hands of armed actors associated with national governments and investors. Third, we develop a set of policy recommendations in high-lighting the need for thorough regulatory frameworks, meaningful consultation, and full transparency.


    GIGA Working Papers






    German Institute for Global and Area Studies (GIGA)



    Dr. Alexander De Juan

    Ehemals Research Fellow

    Prof. Dr. Jann Lay

    Lead Research Fellow / Leitung Forschungsschwerpunkt "Globalisierung und Entwicklung"

    T. +49 (0)40 - 428


    GIGA Focus Nahost | 2/2022

    The Russian War against Ukraine: Middle East Food Security at Risk

    In Nordafrika und dem Nahen Osten ist die Abhängigkeit von Weizen aus der Ukraine und Russland mit 50 Prozent weltweit mit am höchsten. Da der Krieg in der Ukraine den globalen Lebensmittelhandel beeinträchtigt, existieren negative Folgen für die Ernährungssicherheit in weiten Teilen der arabischen Welt.

    Prof. Dr. Eckart Woertz

    Direktor des GIGA Instituts für Nahost-Studien

    Forschungsprojekt | 01.03.2019 - 31.12.2021

    Large-Scale Land Acquisitions, Rural Change, and Social Conflict

    By combining theoretical and methodological approaches in political science, economics, and environmental sciences, this project analyzes the effects of large-scale land acquisitions on rural structural change and social conflicts in order to advance academic research, provide international policy advice, and inform the work of local advocacy and development organizations.
    BMZ, 2019-2022


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