Gender and the Political Economy of Land in Africa

Kouamé, Euphrasie B.H. and Fofana, Namizata B. (2015). Gender and the Political Economy of Land in Africa. UNU-INRA Working Paper. United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa.

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    Author Kouamé, Euphrasie B.H.
    Fofana, Namizata B.
    Editor Ayuk, Elias T.
    Nutakor, Praise
    Title Gender and the Political Economy of Land in Africa
    Series Title UNU-INRA Working Paper
    Volume/Issue No. 11
    Publication Date 2015-11-06
    Place of Publication Accra
    Publisher United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa
    Pages iii, 44
    Language eng
    Abstract Evidence shows that secure land rights have positive effects on poor people in general and women in particular, especially where households previously had little security. Several countries in Africa have been undertaking land reform initiatives that prohibit gender-based discrimination; however, the results revealed a substantial gap between the development of laws and their effective implementation. This paper draws attention to the political systems within which land tenure and property rights operate, especially for women. It also points out the main challenges in securing women’s land rights in Africa and highlights the economic, social and environmental benefits of increasing women’s access to land. The analysis shows that although many of the changes in policy and law appear to be legal and technical, access to and control over land is in practice related to socio-economic characteristics and governed by cultural practices and power relations at the family, community and country levels. The paper therefore recognizes the need for innovative approaches that go beyond property rights in operationalising strategies that strengthen women’s access to land. It is not enough for land legislation to be gender-sensitive; it must be gender-transformational. Land markets could potentially contribute to this transformation but their role is still limited by poor institutional capacity. The roles that different actors (women, men, women’s organizations, community leaders, donors) can play would be crucial in the process of securing women’s access to land in Africa.
    Copyright Holder United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa
    Copyright Year 2015
    Copyright type Fair use permitted
    ISBN 9789988633066
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    Created: Mon, 16 Nov 2015, 21:18:40 JST by Praise Nutakor on behalf of UNU INRA