Community land rights open investment opportunities in global south

The devolution of land tenure rights to forest-dwelling communities over the past quarter century has led to the development of entrepreneurial initiatives with substantial positive socio-economic outcomes for livelihoods, according to a leading scientist.

Through case study examples in Guatemala, Namibia, Nepal and Mexico, Steven Lawry, director of Equal Opportunities, Gender, Justice and Tenure at the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), demonstrates how ownership and exclusionary rights provide incentives for communities to proactively manage resources, leading to equitable distribution of benefits and sustainable environmental outcomes.

“These are communities that hadn’t had meaningful rights – where independence governments kept the colonial model of state ownership,” said Lawry, who recently delivered a research paper on the subject at World Bank headquarters in Washington, D.C.

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