Decentralisation and Local Governance of Land in Africa. Land Reform Implementation and Citizen Participation in Tanzania.
The project investigates the implementation of the new wave of land reforms which have been passed by Sub-Saharan African countries during the last couple of decades. In 2003 land reforms were underway in more than twenty countries. Reforms are thought to increase security of rights to land and enhance economic growth. Because of their novelty, however, our knowledge about current land reforms is limited.
We do know that previous reforms were rarely implemented at the local level as envisaged. They sought to increase tenure security by increasing the state’s role land tenure regulation. In reality they often ignored the multiple use rights, increased the number of rules and institutions, and reduced tenure security. Is this also the case with current reforms?
The project analyses how new wave land reforms with their decentralised institutions are being implemented at the local level through case studies in mainland Tanzania. Tanzania’s reform has been highlighted as a model for other countries. Decentralisation is a key element in most new wave reforms, but Tanzania’s decentralisation model has been highlighted in particular. The country has chosen to devolve power to existing, elected, local level governments in rural areas, which should improve accountability and service delivery at the local level. Local authorities are now expected to handle key land services; titling and handling of land conflicts. This project seeks to establish to what extent citizens’ access to these services has improved due to the reform.
The PhD project is funded by FFU and runs from 2009 until 2012.
DIIS researchers involved: Rasmus Hundsbęk.
Partners involved: Roskilde University.