Since 2000, implementation of agro-industries has been promoted by government and supported by several development projects. Foreign investments are expected to meet three priority goals set by the current government: developing food self-sufficiency, facilitating food exports and income generation for farmers, and improving basic infrastructure in remote rural and less productive areas. The agricultural section of the Emerging Senegal Plan drafted in 2013 explicitly identifies synergies between agro-industries and family-farms as the main lever towards rural development and the emergence of middle-scale farms. This win-win partnership is expected to provide self-sufficiency returns for rice, maize, onion, peanut, and other horticulture productions.
In this context, Senegal is currently facing an increasing demand for transparency and reliability of information regarding tenure management and land deals from a range of actors (civil society, governmental and non-governmental organisations, etc.) Here, the objective is to display information on large-scale land acquisitions (LSLAs) in the country, but more importantly to provide a tool to share and discuss information through a dynamic database that will inform debates on LSLAs and ultimately improve decision-making on land-based activities.
What are National Land Observatories?
National Land Observatories (NLOs) are funded activities at country level. They initiate decentralised tasks and strive for more inclusive participation of local partners in collecting, managing, and reviewing land data, thereby promoting transparency and accountability in decision-making processes over land and investments in their countries.
NLOs are an important tool which:
Are you interested in establishing a National Land Observatory in your country? Or are you part of an independent land governance structure or initiative that could benefit from our support? If so, we invite you to get in touch!
Find out more about LSLAs in Senegal through our map, dataset, and charts below.
Image credit: Bourgoin J., Touré L.
By: Jérémy Bourgoin, Elodie Valette, Simon Guillouet, Djibril Diop and Djiby Dia
In current literature, certain scholars have stressed the role of the private sector in the process of revitalizing agriculture through agribusiness-led development. Others have underlined the global risks of poorly negotiated land acquisitions that disadvantage farmers and of nontransparent trade arrangements that create suspicion within local communities. Official and unofficial data whose relevance is frequently questioned, because they differ from actual conditions found on the ground, are often built upon these narratives. This acknowledgement points to the need for reliable data in order to support constructive debates on models of agricultural development. Senegal is experiencing similar controversies involving the dynamics of agribusiness development within the context of inadequate information on land acquisitions. In this paper, we first acknowledge the existence of past and current efforts to address investments in the agricultural sector. After critical analysis of these documents, we propose another way to monitor investments with survey tools that are embedded in participatory action-research processes and then provide information that can be used as a boundary object. We advocate the use of mapping tools to identify and monitor land processes, and the use of geospatial information to help identify an initial inventory of various sources of data on large-scale land transactions.
Use customisable filters to explore the web-based geographic information systems (GIS) map for information about land deals from global down to regional and country level.
Search the dataset through pre-configured entry points where deals have been grouped by common shared attributes (such as nature of investment, region, or investor), filter information according to your line of interest, or drill down to single deals where you can provide feedback and start a discussion through comments.
Generate your own downloadable infographics using a wide selection of charts to illustrate information about deals, such as the global flow of transnational land acquisitions, the total size and number of deals, and a breakdown of deals according to sector and interest.