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News and Events

The Open City Initiative is a new global network of transdisciplinary education, research, and societal partnerships. The focus is on issues Read more
Extended deadline: 10 March 2021 The Mekong Region Land Governance together with our partners; FAO and Land Portal will be Read more
The Land Portal Foundation is seeking a dynamic and highly motivated (Open) Data Officer to join our dynamic data team Read more
What stories of frontline climate leadership need to be heard and amplified? The Human Impacts Institute, together with the Tenure Read more
Deadline expression of interest: 12 March 2021 The Knowledge Platform Security & Rule of Law has launced a Knowledge Management Read more
Despite Tanzania’s progressive legal framework on land rights and governance, many women are often left out of community decision-making due Read more
In this perspective article, author Albert Salamanca, Senior Research Fellow at the Stockholm Environment Institute’s Asia Centre, shares five insights Read more

1st March 2021 00:00 -
10th March 2021 00:00
WASS/CSPS PhD ‘Early-Spring’ School Natural Resources and Conflict: Violence, Resistance and the State (Online) - Wageningen University

Dates: Monday 1 – Wednesday 10 March 2021

Growing pressures on natural resources –related to land and water grabbing and climate change- feed into concerns over natural resource conflict worldwide, making this a core issue in development studies today. Dominant paradigms frame the resource-conflict nexus in terms of scarcity, employing some form of causal reasoning. This course unpacks and critiques this reasoning, introducing a range of other perspectives on the varied linkages between resources, conflict and violence. The course discusses the overt and covert forms of violence shaping resource access, the (absence of) resistance, and the role of institutions and state power. The course offers students a solid theoretical basis to problematize the relation between natural resources and conflict, drawing on classical thinkers as well as recent work.

The course is designed for PhD students interested in (further) developing a conceptualization of the link between resource access, conflict, and violence. Participants will actively reflect on the relevance for their PhD projects and research context. Participants discuss critical perspectives on resource conflict from political sociology, philosophy, political geography, and (legal) anthropology.

Course set-up

  • This course encourages students to reconsider their own research from a variety of perspectives and stimulates creative thinking through working with classic theories on natural resources and conflict.
  • The course is organised around reading, self-study, active pre-class preparation, in-class dialogue, and interactive methods.
  • The course includes literature-based tutorial sessions that take place every morning (online, 10.00-12.00 every morning AMS time). The sessions develop around questions and reflections brought in by the participants. Topics discussed include, among others, structural violence, dispossession, contentious politics, legal pluralism, violence as performance.
  • The course concludes with a debate session. Assessment is done on the basis of a ‘running’ essay that participants work on throughout the course.

Course coordinators
Lotje de Vries (SDC) (contact person), Gemma van der Haar (SDC). Lecturers include experts from different departments at Wageningen University. We are currently finalizing the course outline and will post it online soon.
Please reach out to if you have any questions regarding the program.

The course is offered in an online format. The course combines daily online 2-hour sessions with readings, assignments, and the discussion forum on Brightspace.

To register for the course please contact Marcella Haan; Tel +31 317 484126,

This online edition is offered at a reduced rate. The fee is 275 euro for WUR PhD Students and 550 euro for those from outside WUR.

The course is organized and developed by the Conflict Cluster of the Centre for Space, Place and Society (CSPS) that brings together researchers from various chair groups within Wageningen University (WUR) – Cultural Geography (GEO), Rural Sociology (RSO), Health and Society
(HSO) and Sociology of Development Change (SDC).

Download the flyer here.


8th March 2021 00:00 -
11th March 2021 00:00
Youth Learning Lab: Good Practices and Innovations for Youth Access to Land

Date: 8-10 March 2021, 15:00 - 16:00 CET

How do young men and women succeed in accessing land? Join the International Land Coalition, Landesa and Slow Food Youth Network in a series of three webinars dedicated to youth and access to land. Learn from the good practices and experiences of innovation from all over the world! During three days, the following good practices will be examined:

  • March 8: Inclusive inheritance
  • March 9: Redistributive policies and pro-youth quota
  • March 10: Market-based mechanisms

More information and registration

9th March 2021
12:30 to 14:00
Webinar FIFDH | Films for Change: It's time to upgrade your changemaking toolbox!

Date: 9 March 2021, 12:30 - 14:00 CET
Location: online

The Geneva International Film Festival (FIFDH) and Movies that Matter invite you to this special webinar for changemakers on using films as tools for action and social change. Films can be effective tools to strengthen human rights movements and create social and environmental change. When strategically used, they can enhance the work of NGOs, international organisations, foundations, philanthropists and all those involved in human rights and climate justice advocacy and activities in the field.

In this session you will discover the power of films as effective tools and learn why engaging with films will contribute to effectively advancing the causes you care and advocate for.

More information and registration, click here.

11th March 2021
16:00 to 17:15

Educating for Food Sovereignty: Insights from Brazil's Landless Workers' Movement  

David Meek, University of Oregon

Agrarian social movements are at a crossroads. Although these movements have made significant strides in advancing the concept of food sovereignty, the reality is that many of their members remain engaged in environmentally degrading forms of agriculture, and the lands they farm are increasingly unproductive. Whether movement farmers will be able to remain living on the land, and dedicated to alternative agricultural practices, is a pressing question. In this talk, Dr. David Meek will explore this question through a discussion of his recent book The Political Ecology of Education: Brazil’s Landless Workers’ Movement and the Politics of Knowledge (2020; West Virginia University Press, Radical Natures series; see His presentation will examine the opportunities for and constraints on advancing food sovereignty in the 17 de Abril settlement, a community born out of a massacre of landless Brazilian workers in 1996. Based on immersive fieldwork over the course of seven years, Meek’s ethnography makes the provocative argument that critical forms of food systems education are integral to agrarian social movements’ survival. While the need for critical approaches is especially immediate in Brazil’s Amazon, Meek’s presentation will speak to the burgeoning attention to food systems education at various educational levels worldwide, from primary to postgraduate programs. His talk will call on us to rethink the politics of the possible within these pedagogies.

You can join by clicking on the Teams link below.

Microsoft Teams meeting

Click here to join the meeting

16th March 2021 00:00 -
26th March 2021 00:00

The Open City Initiative is a new global network of transdisciplinary education, research, and societal partnerships. The focus is on issues related to cities as open frontier spaces that belong to everyone, and urban studies that are widely open to any discipline. In the face of current events (e.g. BLM, climate crises, pandemic-lockdown, widespread urban evictions) in established cities and the rapid pace of urbanisation across continents, there is an increasing need for an open platform to tackle the urgent societal questions regarding inclusivity, sustainability, and ‘openness’ of urban spaces and research. To provide such a platform, the Initiative has joined forces from geographers, urban planners, anthropologists, humanity and international development scholars at Utrecht University.

The Initiative will be launched through a series of webinars and workshops planned in two weeks from March 16 to March 26. They will provide an opportunity for sharing and exchange of knowledge about the Open City. A wide range of academic and nonacademic speakers will be present, such as NGOs, activists, researchers and students.

Who we are

The organization of the initiative is led by: Abigail Friendly, Kei Otsuki, Francesca Pilo (Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning); Martijn Oosterbaan (Department of Anthropology), and Babette Berrocal (Centre for Global Challenges, UGlobe) at Utrecht University.

If you have any questions regarding one of our events, please feel free to contact us by e-mail through:

Webinars & Workshops
  • Keynote: Open City: The Spatial Justice of Urban Sutainability | March 16, 14:30–15:45 (CET)
  • Webinar: Pandemic (In)securities: Violence and Order-Making | March 17, 13:00 – 15:00 (CET time)
  • Webinar: Coping with Corona in the Margins: Urban Vulnerabilities and Inequalities | March 18, 13:00 – 15:00 (CET time)
  • Workshop: Inclusive Cities and Global Urban Transformations | March 19, 13:00 – 15:00 (CET time)
  • Workshop: The More-Than-Human City | March 23, 10:00 – 12:00 (CET time)
  • Webinar: Sustainable Solutions for Open Cities: How Citizens Deal and Shape Energy and Climate Challenges | March 24, 13:00 – 15:00 (CET time)
  • Webinar: Politicizing the Pandemic: Legitimacy, Integrity and Governance | March 25, 13:00 – 15:00 (CET time)
  • The Open City Initiative: Future Steps | March 26, 15:30 – 16:45

For more information and how to register, visit the website here.

22nd March 2021 00:00 -
26th March 2021 00:00
Washington, USA

Tentative date. The conference will most probably be postponed until fall 2021 or spring 2022

15th May 2021 00:00 -
17th May 2021 00:00
FIG | 6th FIG Young Surveyors Conference
‘Challenges in our new reality: Reimagining a Sustainable Future’

Date: 15-16 May 2021
Time: online conference across four time zones

Surveyors play a large role in the drive towards our common future. More so, young surveyors representing the link with the future play a larger role in the adaption to the new reality and face the Global Challenges of our day. This requires the involvement, and cooperation of young surveyors from the wide spectrum of the surveying profession. The 6th FIG Young Surveyors Conference (6YSC) is a two-day online conference, held across four time zones, that will provide young surveyors from different cultures, countries, academic qualifications, and professional backgrounds to meet, learn from each other, dialogue on the integral role of young surveyors towards rising up to the Challenges of our New Reality.
20th June 2021 00:00 -
26th June 2021 00:00
FIG | E-Working Week 2021

'Smart Surveyors for Land and Water Management. Challenges in a New Reality'

Date: 20 - 25 June 2021
What impact is the coronavirus pandemic having on the geospatial industry worldwide? The current situation is unique. There are no textbooks from which we can learn how to master such a crisis. The impact varies from country to country and from organisation to organisation. Such a change in reality brings challenges and opportunities. During FIG e-Working Week we want to focus on the surveyor and the challenges they have in an unstable, uncertain, unpredictable world and with what technology, methods and procedures they face these new developments. How do surveyors adapt to these unexpected circumstances and what have we learned so far from these challenges?

This special e-Working Week will be accessible from all over the world, allowing the whole FIG Community with over 250.000 members from 120 countries to join in the event.

More information

30th June 2021 00:00 -
3rd July 2021 00:00

Land, Crisis and Resilience

30 June – 2 July 2021

The LANDac Annual International Conference offers a podium for knowledge exchange between researchers, practitioners and private sector representatives interested in land governance for equitable and sustainable development. Anticipating that the COVID-19 global crisis will continue to restrict travel and large-scale events, the LANDac Annual International Conference 2021 will be held in an online format.

This year’s conference ‘Land, Crisis and Resilience’ focusses on the challenges that global, intertwining crises pose to land governance systems, processes and actors. The global pandemic and the expected economic decline play out simultaneously with ongoing effects of climate change and persistent food insecurity. The COVID-19 pandemic put land access and land governance under pressure, and both uncovered and deepened underlying problems. While we have only started to document the impacts of the pandemic on rural and urban livelihoods, we also need to ask how it plays out in relation to these other crises, chronic (such as poverty) or acute (e.g. climate-related hazards). To this background, the conference addresses three interconnected questions:

  • How do different global crises impact land access? (And where do we see the biggest problems?)
  • How does the land governance landscape respond? (And where does it need to do better?)
  • What can we learn about resilience in response to these intertwined crises? (And how could land governance support that?)
5th July 2021 00:00 -
17th July 2021 00:00
LANDac Annual Summer School
Land Governance for Development

Every summer, LANDac organises the ‘Land Governance for Development’ Summer School in Utrecht, the Netherlands. The next Summer School will take place between the 5th – 16th July 2021.

Large-scale acquisition of land in the global South has received a great deal of interest in the last few years. Especially following the food crisis (2003-08), and stimulated by the growing demand for biofuels, pressure on land continues to increase. This course provides a multidisciplinary analysis of the ‘land rush’ within the more general context of land governance in Africa, Asia, and Latin America: the history and drivers, the diversity of stakeholders and networks involved, the urgency and current challenges, and innovative governance solutions.

The large-scale acquisition of land in the global South – often referred to as land grabbing – has received much attention from academics, policy-makers, and media in the last years. Especially following the food crisis (2003-08), and stimulated by the growing demand for bio-energy, pressure on land in developing countries has increased quickly. Besides the demand for agricultural land, current land acquisitions are also related to tourism development, the rush for minerals and oil, industrial development, urbanization and nature conservation. Local populations often seem defenseless in this ‘rush for land’ and governments lack capacity to address the challenges. As a result, access to and use of natural resources, particularly in the developing world, is being transformed irreversibly.

Land governance in developing countries has to deal with the multiple pressures and competing claims in balancing economic growth, environmental protection and social justice. This course provides a multidisciplinary analysis of the ‘land rush’ within the more general context of land governance in Africa, Asia and Latin America: the history and drivers of the processes, the diversity of stakeholders and networks involved, the urgency and current challenges, and innovative governance solutions.

The course
The course is organized by the Netherlands Academy for Land Governance (LANDac), a network of organizations interested in how land governance may contribute to sustainable and inclusive development. MSc students, PhD students and professionals from development organizations and related projects will acquire up-to-date knowledge on new land pressures and learn how to place these in broader theoretical contexts and policy debates. Participants learn about best practices in land governance from different perspectives and on multiple levels, from local to international. Topics are discussed in interactive mini-courses, lectures and solution-oriented workshops. The design of the course allows for participants to closely work together with professionals, experts and fellow students from a variety of backgrounds.

The tutorials in the two-week course provide a general overview of important themes such as the global land rush, land governance, land administration and land issues in post-conflict situations. This overview is complemented by a mix of case studies that illustrate issues and trends in specific contexts, cases highlighted in previous LANDac summer schools include (trans)national land investments in Indonesia and the Philippines, government-led land acquisition and resettlement policies in India, and World Bank policies on land. The course also investigates the trend of foreigners buying real estate for residential tourism in Costa Rica, land governance solutions in countries with weak institutions such as Burkina Faso, challenges for participatory land governance in Mozambique, and coping with urban pressures on agricultural land in Vietnam. Topics are discussed from a range of perspectives, blending insights from Dutch and international academics with those of development practitioners, representatives of farmers’ organizations and government policy advisors.

More information
Visit the Utrecht University Summer School website for more information and to register, or contact us at if you have any questions.

Last year (2020), due to the global COVID19 pandemic, the Annual Summer School took place online. Covid-19 and the measures taken worldwide to curb the pandemic are of great concern to the land governance community, as alarming observations are coming in about the loss of livelihoods and deepening poverty, government crackdowns on civil society, the suspension of land administration services and irregular land acquisition. We also reflected on these current developments and immediate effects of the pandemic, and how it might change the future work and priorities of the land governance community.