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

Haiti and the Failed Promise of US Aid

After an earthquake struck in 2010, the US pledged to help rebuild the Caribbean country. A decade later, nothing better symbolises the failure of these efforts than the story of a new port that was promised but never built.

In These Hills, Our Gods and Our Futures

In Odisha in eastern India, Arko Datto and Raghu Karnad cover the resistance of Dongria Kondh women to industrial interests that want to exploit their sacred hills for bauxite reserves.

A Journey Through Contested Lands: Tanzania

A moving photo essay about the Maasai in northeast Tanzania, who are struggling to make a living on ancestral lands that the government keeps trying to take away.

A Journey Through Contested Lands: Honduras

Real estate investors are violating the hard-fought land rights of the Garífuna, an Afro-Caribbean community in Honduras whose unique and endangered culture has been recognized by UNESCO.

A Journey Through Contested Lands: Azerbaijan

In Azerbaijan, Emin Özmen captures a story of assimilation: the integration of the Talysh, with their distinct and sometimes fading traditions, into a country asserting its national identity.

Meet the Journalist: Uri Blau

Uri Blau used U.S. and Israeli tax records to connect the dots between American tax-exempt charities and their Israeli beneficiaries operating over the Green Line.

Meet the Journalist: Chris Arsenault

What happens when investors look for land deals in Africa? Journalist Chris Arsenault looks at what is happening to the Libyan government's 100,00 hectare land grab in Mali.