Princetonlaan 8a, 3584 CB, Utrecht +31 30 253 13 63

Job Opportunity at The Land Portal Foundation

Vacancy: Budget, Administration & MEL Support

Application deadline is 30th of September

The Land Portal Foundation is a non-for-profit organization based in the Netherlands dedicated to supporting the efforts of the rural poor to gain equitable access to land by addressing the fragmentation of information resources on land.  We believe access to information is crucial to achieve good land governance and to secure land rights for vulnerable people. Our mission is to build an information ecosystem for land governance that supports better informed decision and policy making at national and international levels. Our belief is that within a functioning and inclusive information ecosystem data, both information and the diversity of perspectives become more visible and accessible to a much larger audience.  Ultimately, this significantly increases the chances that the information reaches target audiences in a way that contributes to securing people’s land rights.

The Land Portal website brings together content from over 1,000 partner organizations all over the world.

General responsibilities
She/he/they will support all administration and budget functions of the Land Portal Foundation, including recording, classifying, examining and analysing data and records of financial transactions. This person will also support M&E  activities for the Foundation.

For more information about the details of the position, the required qualifications and application process, check the Land Portal website here.

Mayke Kaag professor by special appointment of the Anthropology of Islam in Africa and its Diaspora at the University of Amsterdam

We congratulate Dr. Mayke Kaag with her new position as professor. She has been named professor by special appointment of the Anthropology of Islam in Africa and its Diaspora at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences of the University of Amsterdam (UvA). The chair has been established on behalf of the African Studies Centre Leiden.

As a political anthropologist, Mayke Kaag conducts research on contemporary Islam in Africa and the African diaspora from the perspective of Africa’s global connections. Islam – in Africa and elsewhere – is both a product of global connections and a co-constructor of them. Kaag focuses primarily on connections achieved through mobility and migration and through Islamic charities and educational institutions.

It has become particularly important to consider the dynamics of Islam and its global connections in these times of intensive globalisation, in which increasing global interdependence is developing hand in hand with major uncertainty, distrust and inequality, as well as an intensified search for connection, morality and meaning.

Muslims from sub-Saharan Africa have often been underrepresented in research on (global) Islam. With this in mind, Kaag will use her special appointment to research how West African Muslims interpret, use and help determine these connections. Local cultural and political contexts will be important in her analysis, as will the experiences that (categories of) African Muslims have of inclusion or exclusion, influenced by local, national and global power dynamics. Kaag will examine the impact that these experiences have on processes of religious meaning-making, forms of political Islam, and connections that Muslims in Africa and the Diaspora establish.

At the UvA, Kaag will participate in the ‘Exploring Diversity: Critical ethnographies of belonging and exclusion’ research programme set up by the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR).

Book chapter “Alli Kawsay: Epistemology and Political Practice in the Territories, a Possibility from the Andean Pluriverse for Ecological Justice and the Care of Mother Nature”

Eduardo Erazo Acosta is a Sociologist at the Researcher Group Curriculum and University, University Nariño, Pasto, Colombia. Eduardo has written a chapter for the book The Palgrave Handbook of Climate Resilient Societies, called “Alli Kawsay: Epistemology and Political Practice in the Territories, a Possibility from the Andean Pluriverse for Ecological Justice and the Care of Mother Nature”.


Indigenous communities are noted for being resilient. The following presentation is an epistemological-political action from the world of possibilities in the pluriverse of indigenous knowledge. The Alli Kawsay (Buen Vivir) and its political, cultural, and epistemic options offer the possibility to work collectively in favor of our ‘Mother Nature.’ From the urgent options to be heard in the current climate crisis and even more in the sociopolitical crisis, it is essential to strengthen respect for Mother Nature. This document arises from learning in indigenous communities in walking and listening to indigenous talk in the Andean region in high Andean and Amazonian communities. Presented here are elements of the rights of nature. The Alli Kawsay is an option to be lived urgently now, as a serious and fundamental option that originates from ancestral knowledge, is lived by millions in the global south, and that today is taken up again at the global level by activists and people aware of the care of nature as a subject of rights in the international political framework.

Click here to go to the chapter on Spring Link 

IGAD endorsed Regional Women’s Land Rights Agenda

On 28 July 2021, the Ministers responsible for Lands and the Ministers responsible for Gender/Women Affairs from the IGAD Member States made history, when they as a Regional Economic Community put closing of the gender gap on land at the center of the Region’s Development Agenda. The IGAD Regional Women’s Land Rights Agenda was endorsed with the presence of 11 of the 14 ministers expected to be present at the event.

The Regional Women’s Land Rights Agenda is a framework document that will enable IGAD Secretariat provide the necessary support to its Member States in implementing gender and land projects for the next 10 years.

Click here to read the IGAD’s Women’s Land Rights Agenda

Click here to read the document with the outcomes of the IGAD Regional Women’s Land Rights Conference

Click here to read more information on IGAD’s website

Lecture by Anthony Bebbington: Natural resource extraction: social justice challenges

Join LIVE the #KAPTalks with Anthony Bebbington of the Ford Foundation who will discuss extraction of natural resources as a social justice question, particularly in light of COVID-19 pandemic. The event will be hybrid, physical and online. Join us on 10th September at 14:00 CET / 12:00 GMT. The lecture is hosted by the University of Utrecht.
Click here to register to join the zoom session

Global Witness’s annual reports on the killings of environmental defenders are but one, awful, indication of the social injustices that can accompany the extraction of natural resources from the subsoil and from forests. The struggle for social justice in these environments has become yet more difficult under COVID, all the more so given the impacts of COVID on indigenous populations in many of these environments. These challenges seem likely to intensify downstream of COVID in the face of economic reactivation policies, closing civic space, the search for energy transition minerals, and a politics of urgency that risks undermining a politics of social justice. In this talk I explore some of these trends and the challenges they present to civil society and to philanthropies that support civil society. I will refer especially to the experience of the Ford Foundation, while also making a broader argument.

Go to the Kapuscinski Lectures website

African Youth Engagement in Land Governance

On the sidelines of the land inequality report launch, ILC co-organised the Youth and Land Conference 2020. In this blogpost, Gerdien Archterberg, ILC Africa research intern, shares her experience of speaking to a wide range of stakeholders on youth and land issues.

Why would the African youth need to be involved in land governance?

This was the first question that popped into my mind when I first read the internship vacancy of ILC-Africa, to which I applied later in July 2020. From my very Dutch and white female youth perspective, land rights did seem to be a bit boring to be engaged in as a young person. However, after doing research for the past 3 months on ‘youth access to land in Africa and their engagement in land governance’ I started to reframe this question into ‘why is African youth not involved in land governance, as they are so heavily affected by it?’

As a Dutch student who has never been to Africa (and barred from travelling now due to COVID-19), the whole African tenure system and setting are quite new to me and even surprising.

On the one hand, this made it sometimes very hard to be ahead of all different aspects that are relevant to land related questions in the African context. On the other hand, it allowed me to ask new questions and see things from a different perspective. What was really striking to me was the importance of land for the African youth.

Here in the Netherlands, access to land and housing is of course also important, but as I learnt at the just-ended IGAD Youth and Land Conference, land seems to be even more important in the African context as it is a prerequisite for African youth to reach food security, gain economic empowerment and to create sustainable livelihoods.

The agricultural sector is still seen as a key factor for African development in which access to land plays a crucial role. Moreover, in several communities land is very much interconnected with the social norms and cultural values that are a part of peoples’ identity. For example, a case study I consulted says that a young person is only considered an adult if they have access to land so they can build a house and start a family.

But the youth are facing a lot of challenges in getting access to, control over and ownership of land. Challenges that are often mentioned are the dependency of inheritance, fragmentation of land and land governance practices that are in the hands of elderly men. Most African countries have a growing youth population which form a large part of their demographics. The 226 million that lived in Africa in 2015 are expected to double by 2055, according to the UN. In combination with higher life expectations, this results in accessing smaller plots of land at a later age for the youth. Besides accessing land through inheritance or land allocations by the traditional authorities, there are also possibilities to access land through government allocations and to rent or buy land on the land market. However, bureaucratic practices and lack of legal structures that acknowledge and secure land rights for youth make this pathway very difficult. Accessing rental and sales markets for the youth is also a big challenge, as these markets are often very insecure and expensive. Youth generally lack the financial resources to access land through this way.

One of the things that became really clear during my research is that youth are often not taken seriously in land governance spheres. One of my interviewees, who is a female youth who worked in the land sector, said: “I remember the times that I went to these meetings and you find that you are the youngest person in the room, and you feel that your voice is suppressed. You are scared because you know those are people that have been in land governance for 20 years or 15 years, and they look at you thinking, ‘what are you even doing here?’” This was confirmed in other interviews with other (female) youth in the land sector. This is a very important point as it is often acknowledged and pointed out by many actors that it is important that youth be at the table, and involved in land governance. After all, they are the ones that are going to inherit the laws and policies that are made today. However, there are many challenges that need to be overcome to make sure youth are really engaged and able to participate in land governance. Besides not being taken seriously, they also often lack information about their land rights and sometimes seem to be unaware of the need to be involved in land governance. This places them at a disadvantaged position.

The scientific literature is very much silent about youth engagement in land governance, and what their challenges and opportunities are. There are some examples of how conflict can change social settings within land governance, and there are some papers that stress the importance of good training programs and youth engagement in research about land governance. However, very little has been written about how youth can be engaged further, especially within traditional land management systems. For ILC, this might be an opportunity to investigate how their members deal with youth participation in land governance and what we can learn from each other. After all, it would be a missed opportunity for everyone if the youth have no voice in creating their own future, and the future of Africa.


Chigbu, U. E., Wanyonyi, A., & Antonio, D. (2020). Empowerment of youth through strengthening their land rights knowledge and research capacity: evidence from Eastern and Southern Africa. African Journal on Land Policy and Geospatial Sciences3(1), 129-142.

Diao, X., Hazell, P., & Thurlow, J. (2010). The Role of Agriculture in African Development. World Development, 38(10), 1375–1383.

IGAD youth land governance. (2020, November 24). Exhibition Day 1. Steering Committee Video [Video file]. Retrieved from

Kobusingye, D. N. (2020). African youths; the forgotten category in land governance. A case study of post-conflict Acholi Region, Northern Uganda. Geoforum109, 135-142.

United Nations. (2015). Population facts: Youth population trends and sustainable development.

This blogpost is published as part of Ms. Achterberg’s intership program at ILC Africa under the supervision of Kevin Eze, Communications, Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist.

Find the original publication of the blog here on the ILC’s website

Land 2022 Travel Award

Land (ISSN 2073-445X) is an  international and cross-disciplinary, peer-reviewed, open access journal of land use and land management published quarterly online by MDPI. 

Land will be awarding two Travel Awards for junior scientists. The applications will be assessed by an Evaluation Committee led by Editor-in-Chief, Prof. Dr. Andrew Millington.

The award provide financial support for the winners to attend an international conference in the field of Land to be held in 2022, in order to hold a presentation, present a poster, or both.

Candidate Requirements:
– Postdoctoral fellows or PhD students.
– Plans to attend an international conference in 2022 (oral presentation or poster).

Required Application Documents:
– Information of the conference the applicant is planning to attend and the abstract that will be submitted.
– Curriculum Vitae and list of publications.
– Justification letter describing the focus of the research (max. 800 words).
– Letter of recommendation from the supervisor, research director, or department head, which also confirms the applicant’s status as a postdoctoral fellow/PhD student.

The winners (two awardees) will each be awarded CHF 800 and a certificate.

Please submit your applications for the Land 2022 Travel Award online by 31 December 2021. Prizes will be awarded at the end of February 2022 and announced on the Land website.

Apply here

Opportunity: Program Manager, Explore, RECOFTC Main Office

Application deadline: August 16th, 2021

At RECOFTC, we believe in a future where people live equitably and sustainably in and beside healthy, resilient forests. We take a long-term, landscape-based and inclusive approach to supporting local communities to secure their land and resource rights, stop deforestation, find alternative livelihoods and foster gender equity. We are the only non-profit organization of our kind in Asia and the Pacific. We have more than 30 years of experience working with people and forests, and have built trusting relationships with partners at all levels. Our influence and partnerships extend from multilateral institutions to governments, private sector and local communities. Our innovations, knowledge and initiatives enable countries to foster good forest governance, mitigate and adapt to climate change, and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda.

RECOFTC is inviting applications for the position of Program Manager for Explore, a research network and community of practice, which is dedicated to expanding and applying knowledge on forest landscape governance in Southeast Asia. The successful applicant will be based in the RECOFTC main office in Bangkok, Thailand, but a remote working arrangement may be considered for the first six months of the contract. The contract duration is for 24 months with a possibility of extension subject to funding availability and satisfactory performance.

Click here to read the Vacancy Announcement PCTS Program Manager Forest Landscape Governance Research Network_JPA2

Opportunity: Postdoc position in ‘development-induced displacement and resettlement’

Deadline: 15th of August
Click here for the full vacancy

Postdoc position in ASPASIA project: ‘Inside the investment frontier (inFRONT)’ (1.0 FTE)
In recent years global investments in large-scale development projects – for energy production and transitions, infrastructure and urban development, nature conservation and tourism – have proliferated. These land-based investments are increasingly justified under the banner of sustainable development. Proponents argue that the investments are vital to close the dire infrastructural gap across the globe. Critical scholars contend that investment projects for greater public goods and national development generate few opportunities for local populations. However, the project-associated land acquisitions tend to displace people with little responsible follow-up. In this context, ‘resettlement’ is increasingly framed as a new development opportunity, in order to expand new frontiers of infrastructural development and create new jobs and alternative livelihoods for the displaced people, who are often portrayed as those in need of ‘development’.

Previous studies have focused largely on the problems of resettlement by focusing on inadequate compensation or housing and livelihood vulnerabilities in the new areas where the displaced are forcibly resettled. The cultural practices that are disrupted and therefore leading to social disarticulation are also widely problematized. However, these problems keep on being reproduced across various investment projects even when the projects follow the international guidelines or national legislations that oblige investors to conduct ‘environmental and social impact assessments’. The urgent question is: why? What are the structural and fundamental problems that create persisting problems associated with resettlement? What are the wider implications of resettlement for building more inclusive, sustainable and equitable societies? As resettlement projects are part of discourses of pursuing global sustainable development, development geographers need to explore theoretically as well as empirically what resettlement means for more equitable and sustainable development for all.

Want to know more? Click here for the full vacancy

Ready for some music?

LANDac’s first music playlist

We have added a new creative aspect to our platform in order to inspire you; through music. Songs that are somehow related to issues of land, and its meaning and significance are collected and can be found in a Spotify playlist: LANDac Songs of Our Lands. It consists of music from all over the world and the list will continue to grow overtime with new input.

Get inspired, start your week, end your day, dance around, walk outside with one click on this link: