A historical perspective on the 'Global Land Rush'

1 Jan 2011

Using a broad historical and conceptual scope, this paper by Chris Huggins and the International Land Coalition acknowledges the difficulties inherent in drawing neat conclusions regarding a long history of unequal relations around agricultural production and trade.

It argues that the “land rush” is only the most overt aspect of a more insidious pattern of external control over decisions which critically compromises local livelihoods in the global South. Rather than becoming fixated solely on the idea of foreign direct investment, the report warns that wider questions should be considered: what is the future of agricultural production in the developing world, particularly in Africa, and what is the role of the smallholder farmer in the future? Without a commitment to an equitable and sustainable future for rural producers, the author concludes, any temporary investment is merely a distraction, not a solution.

Author: Chris Huggins, ILC, 2011