Issue

Land and Property Rights

Across the globe, rising demand for food, energy and natural resources such as timber, water, and minerals, has created enormous pressures on land— and access to it. Vast tracts of land are being snatched up by both public and private investors; most frequently in low-income and middle-income countries. The impact of these often secretive land deals on local communities is huge.

In frontier markets, where property rights are weak, unclear, or poorly governed, there is an increased likelihood of corruption, human rights abuses, conflict over resources, and environmental degradation. And it is often the most vulnerable groups, including minorities, indigenous people, the poor, and women, who bear the brunt of the problems created by poor land governance.

To investigate this growing crisis, Pulitzer Center-funded journalists are following stories that will increase transparency about land deals, expose weak land governance systems, and highlight the risks to stakeholders who invest in bad land deals. Their reporting illuminates fresh, new approaches to securing land rights that might promote, rather than erode, local development priorities.

The Pulitzer Center’s reporting on land rights issues is made possible through the support of the Omidyar Network's Property Rights Initiative, American Jewish World Service, the Kendeda Fund, and other Pulitzer Center donors.

 

 

 

 

Land and Property Rights

December 27, 2017

Panama at the Crossroads

Guido Bilbao, Sol Lauría

Heavy machinery is cutting a new road to untouched Caribbean beaches. Extractive industries are threatening the Darien's forests. Who owns these lands? Their ancestral inhabitants are ready to fight.

December 15, 2017

Inter(Nation)al

Isaac Kestenbaum, Allison Herrera, Josephine Holtzman

Inter(Nation)al ​explores current events through the lens of treaties signed between the U.S. Government and Native Nations. These treaties bind all of us—legally and culturally.

December 14, 2017

Venezuela’s New Gold Rush

Bram Ebus, Stefano Wrobleski, Gustavo Faleiros

For many people, gold fires the imagination, but can it resolve a crisis? Venezuela finds itself in distress and is going all-in on gold mining—an industry tainted by conflict.

December 14, 2017

Border Fence Land Grab

Julián Aguilar, Kiah Collier, Jay Root

Donald Trump's promised border wall will involve taking land from hundreds of people. An earlier land grab to build border fencing was rushed, sloppy, and gave landowners wildly differing payments.

October 31, 2017

The Federation Files

Uri Blau, Akela Lacy

Together, more than 148 non-profit Jewish federations hold assets of $16 billion in the United States and Canada. Investigative journalist Uri Blau examines how the money is spent.

Kruger’s Contested Borderlands

Displaced communities in Mozambique are calling out rich foreigners and corrupt politicians, saying their land is being unfairly taken in the name of environmental conservation.

Meet the Journalist: Guido Bilbao

Panama is facing a serious environmental threat. Investigations have revealed a serious threat to Panama's natural resources that impacts the country's environment and people.

This Week: Kingdom of Women

This Week: A village in China where women rule, an island off British Columbia was supposed to be an economic salvation, and illegal mining is causing problems for Venezuela.

This Week: Botched Land Grab Along the Border

This week: A land grab at the U.S.-Mexico border reveals how the government might go about building the wall, a history of land grabs by the government are revealed by a laundry list of treaties with American Indian nations, and the women taking on military duty in the Central African Republic.