The value of so-called ‘failed’ large-scale land acquisitions


Authors: Saturnino M. Borras Jr, Jennifer C. Franco, Tsegaye Moreda, Yunan Xu, Natacha Bruna, Binyam Afewerk Demena
Published: 2022
Source: Land Use Policy

This article intensively engages with the Land Matrix's contributions. It underscores that the land rush has remained, and is likely to remain, a significant global phenomenon despite waning international media attention. The scope of the phenomenon is likely to be wider than previously thought. Quantifying the extent of land deals in order to study the social phenomenon spotlights the relevance of two distinct but dialectically linked ‘scopes’, namely, the scope of land deals in terms of the precise geographic physical land area of operational land deals, and the scope of land deals in terms of the larger extent of lands implicated in land deal-making, of which only a part ends up as operational land deals. The latter category is necessarily bigger than the former, and its logic results in the production of non-operational land deals. Studies have been overwhelmingly about operational land deals, inadvertently downplaying the relevance of non-operational land deals. The challenge is to study both operational and non-operational land deals because they are co-constitutive.

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