Conference Agenda

Overview and details of the sessions of this conference. Please select a date or location to show only sessions at that day or location. Please select a single session for detailed view (with abstracts and downloads if available).

Please note that all times are shown in the time zone of the conference. The current conference time is: 6th Dec 2023, 04:42:00am EAT

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Session Overview
TS 24-D: Technical Session D: 24 Nov.
Friday, 24/Nov/2023:
11:00am - 12:30pm

Session Chair: Dr. Richmond Antwi-Bediako, African Development Bank- AfDB-Consultant / Center for Environment Social and Governance Initiative (CESOG), Ghana;
Location: Nelson Mandela Conference Hall
Zoom Link to Nelson Mandela Conference Hall

Main Plenary and Room for parallel session
Session Topics:
04-Implementation of the AfCFTA: Breaking investment and trade - land related barriers for inclusion of African women, pastoralists and youth

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Land governance in Sudan and the question of Equity and Resilience

Prof. Elnazir Ramadan1,2, Dr. Ahmed Elfaig1, Dr. Eltaib Ganawa1

1University of Khartoum ,Sudan, Sudan; 2Sultan Qaboos University ,Muscat ,Oman;

The overall aim of the present article is to reflect on land governance in Sudan and the question of equity and resilience through the status of land's institutions and legislative aspects in the country. Land governance is a complex issue intertwined with social, political, environmental, and economic factors, requiring comprehensive understanding of these dynamics. Land ownership in Sudan has long been characterized by inequality. Traditional land tenure systems are affected by government policies, laws, conflict, displacement, and climate change. The article basic inquiry is to find possible answers to the status and the characteristics of land tenure and land governance practice in Sudan. The article methodology was based on review of available information, primary and secondary sources, such as interviews with multiple actors including, individuals, groups of the community, officials, tribal leaders, land lords and land users. A qualitative approach of structured interviews was conducted to get responses on the existing land tenure, land institutions and land governance practices. Consultation with stakeholders at the individuals and community level was also conducted. Several land legislation, Land Acquisition Act, Land Law and Interim National Constitution were reviewed. Two land tenure systems were deliberately selected on irrigated system and on rainfed and tribal system. These systems are selected because they are widely spread systems in Sudan where the majority of the Sudanese in that areas adopted such systems. In the analysis the article reviews includes a background on the whole situation of the country as one of the most geographically diverse and complex country in Africa. It has different climatic and vegetation zones. Sudan has been divided into eighteen 18 national administrative units called states., which divided into localities, and the localities were further subdivided into Administrative Units (AUs). With respect to the demography of the country, Sudan has a total population of about 40 million. 33.2% of Sudan population is urban inhabitants, while, and 57.9% and 8.9% are rural inhabitants and nomads, respectively. A country with such natural environment, resources, and human and population characteristics has different perspectives, institutions and legislative aspects on land tenure and land governance. Legally, in Sudan land management and land governances’ practices are implemented at several levels; Land legislation, Land Acquisition Act, Land Laws are implemented by Federal Institutions, there are also state level laws based on national laws with emphasis on particular local or state land. However, some of these laws are considered local orders issued by the state or localities to address problems such as those related to pasture and grazing and use of water points. The local orders also based on customary tenure to specify corridors and animals' routes to be followed by nomads. Practically and culturally, land tenure and land acquisition processes in Sudan, has been controlled by different socio-economic organizations (person, household, village, state and region). At the state level, land tenure, management of land and allocation of resources are operated partially under political economy. Likewise, land become a major cause of violence and conflict seeing that more land brought under cultivation i.e. gradual increase in subsistence farming, land grabbing and investment on land by many Arab countries, Turkey and local investors, the number and size of plot per stated actors increased at the expense of other land use types (geographical marginalization).Recently, land use and tenure has become a major cause of conflict, human insecurity and population instability in the country. This has resulted in tenurial and land resource-related conflict. Violence and conflict have arisen between individuals, households, social groups as well as between traditional farmers and pastoralists. Several patterns of land tenure systems exist such as customary land tenure, this system is found in most types of land use in the largest part of the Sudan states where the native administrations dominate particularly in Kordofan and Dar fur and among the different tribal groups in Sudan where every tribe acquired land for itself Dar (a large territory of land). The traditional communal ownership of land greatly controlled the range and pasture tenure the land tenure of pasture is related with Native Administration. Other types of tenure include Large Scale Farms Tenure (LSFT) which is classified under land leased system and example of this system is found in Gadarif State. Land tenure systems in irrigated schemes such as Gezira Scheme based on certain agreements between landlords, investors and government. In Darfur region, Land occupation has serious implications on many different issues such as the economy, demography, societal relationship, the environment and politics. In addition to the increase in poverty and unemployment among productive age of the population, of the IDPs and refuges to their villages encountered difficulties. As far as social and environmental implications are concerned, increasing hostilities and conflicts over land along ethnic lines is very evident on the ground. Millions of people have been forcefully expelled from their land due to their ethnicity, others are moving in because of the same reason, and the government is using land as an incentive to punish communities and reward others. Over exploitation and grazing of land by the current occupiers would, if not reversed, render the already fragile environment barren. In Sudan land governance and land administration are based on national land laws and Acts. It also includes land policy, norms, legal and related institutional frameworks. The Land Registration and Settlement Act in different periods geared towards providing the registration of rights . As such land governances trying to provide rules to determine rights on land and other rights attached to it and ensure land registration. Within this context any land which has not been registered shall be the property of the government and shall be deemed to have been registered as such. These official legislations contradict with reality when dealing with customary tenure in different parts of Sudan. The obvious feature of land governance in Sudan is inconsistency over land rights and land ownership. This has resulted in the disturbance of the already fragile ecosystem with few land resources which exemplified by conflict over land and land resources.

Ramadan-Land governance in Sudan and the question of Equity and Resilience-1300_a.docx

The Social Tenure Domain Model A Pro-Poor Land Tool

Grace Ananda01, Sarah Nandudu02

1Habitat For Humanity International.; 2Slum Dwellers International;


The Global Land Tool Network (GLTN) aims to address the issue of unregistered land, slum upgrading, and urban and rural land management by developing land management tools that prioritize the needs of impoverished communities. The network, led by UN-HABITAT and supported by Norway and Sweden, consists of international partners like the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG), the University of Twente's Faculty of Geo-information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), and the World Bank. The security of tenure for individuals residing in these areas is contingent upon tenurial arrangements that differ from individual freehold ownership. GLTN partners, such as Habitat for Humanity, Slum Dwellers International, and Oxfam, are actively involved in promoting a comprehensive range of land rights, including documented and undocumented forms, extending to individuals, groups, pastoralists, and residents of both legal and illegal informal settlements. The Social Tenure Domain Model (STDM) has been designed to incorporate various social land tenures, and the initial iteration of the Spatial Temporal Data Model (STDM) is currently accessible. This land information management system helps the land administration of economically disadvantaged individuals in both urban and rural areas, including women, youths, and indigenous communities.


Land Administration Systems (LAS) are the infrastructure that allows land policies and land management strategies to be implemented in support of sustainable development. Institutional arrangements, a legal framework, processes, standards, land information, management, and dissemination systems, and technologies required to support allocation, land markets, valuation, control of use, and development of interests in land are all part of the infrastructure. In many countries, such infrastructure does not have nationwide coverage. In fact, this is only true in 25 to 30 countries around the world.

The Social Tenure Domain Model (STDM) is a concept and a tool that aims to bridge the gap between conventional land administration systems and the reality of land tenure in many countries. STDM recognizes that land rights are not only formal, legal and technical, but also informal, social and diverse. STDM provides a standard for representing ‘people – land’ relationships independent of the level of formality, legality and technical accuracy.

However, the However, the need for this is not always acknowledged, and institutional changes are not always easy to implement. The Social Tenure Domain Model (STDM) may be able to bridge this gap: STDM enables the recording of all possible types of tenures; STDM enables the demonstration of what can be observed on the ground in terms of tenure as agreed within local communities. This agreement counts as field evidence.

Benefits of using SDTM.

  • Increased inclusivity by recognizing informal and customary tenure.
  • Improved accuracy and completeness of land information.
  • Enhanced transparency and accountability in land management.
  • Strengthened tenure security for marginalized communities including women, youths and the indigenous communities.

Examples of the implementation focus areas using the STDM model.

  1. Focused agenda on “Tenure Security for All” –Through pro-poor land tools and promotion of the continuum of land rights approach
  2. Strong focus on empowering the rural and urban poor, youths, women and vulnerable groups, indigenous communities, smallholder farmers.
  3. Strong focus on bottom-up and inclusive approaches; grassroots engagement
  4. Knowledge building for land policy development

Lessons learned.

1. Digital data collection process and storage using Fit-for-purpose tools Like STDM are perceived to improve Data share, storage, and management.

2. Community participation and a collaborative approach to land registration with a clear monitoring mechanism promote social and financial value to the services attached to property ownership status.

3. In addition, it also enhances governance structures with an increased revenue base to local government bodies as applicants contribute towards securing tenure rights under the legal gazette tools such as CCOs.

4. Continuous adoption of fit-for-purpose tools like STDM, Tenure responsive planning tool through integrated neighborhood planning approach by Local government promotes sustainable development.

Key achievement:

- Customary Certificates of land ownership and decrease in land related conflicts among slum dwellers in the targeted cities.

- Strengthened local land administration systems.


  • Extend existing Land Administration Systems to include all tenure types.
  • Encourage the adoption of the Social Tenure Domain Model.
  • Promote institutional changes for effective land governance.

This paper will share experiences by Slum Dwellers International (SDI), Habitat for Humanity and GLTN urban cluster using STDM to address land governance.

Ananda-The Social Tenure Domain Model A Pro-Poor Land Tool-1356_a.docx
Ananda-The Social Tenure Domain Model A Pro-Poor Land Tool-1356_b.pptx

A Gender and Land Analysis in Selected Customary Settings in Uganda

Simon Peter Mwesigye1, Christine Kajumba2, Evelyne Ajambo1, Robert Lewis-Lettington3

1United Nations Human Settlements Programme/Global Land Tool Network, Uganda; 2Associates Research Trust Uganda; 3United Nations Human Settlements Programme/Global Land Tool Network, Kenya;

Gender equity in land administration is a critical issue in many developing countries, including Uganda, where women still face significant challenges to access equal land and natural resource rights. In Uganda's customary land rights system, women are primarily disadvantaged as they cannot own or inherit land, mainly due to restrictive practices under customary land tenure. Customary practices in some areas of the country continue to override statutory law in recognizing and enforcing women's land rights.

Despite achievements in legislating land rights equality in Uganda, policy, legal and regulatory frameworks still have gaps, notably in the presumption of marriage among cohabiting couples and the absence of conclusive administrative land regulations for aspects of the 1998 Land Act that concern land certification. In practice, the implementation of gender-responsive actions is outpaced by the rate at which societal norms and practices are reinvented and redefined to disadvantage-gendered land rights. This situation is not helped by the over 50 tribes and over 70 languages spoken in the country, duty bearer associated pitfalls like skewed personal convictions and corrupt tendencies in both statutory and customary land management and administration institutions, opportunistic posturing between marital and natal clans in defining land rights, among others. All is happening amid imprompt dissemination, inappropriate policy translation, and limited access to information services.

This paper provides an overview of Uganda's gendered aspects of land ownership, access, and control, highlighting key issues such as land tenure, customary practices, and policy interventions to promote gender equity in land rights.

This paper achieves its aim through the following research questions;

  1. What social/ cultural norms and practices lead to gender inclusion (progressive) and exclusion in land administration/management on customary tenure?
  2. What are the barriers hindering and opportunities available for women, youth, men, and vulnerable groups to have access and control over land and natural resources for agricultural production and economic empowerment?
  3. What are the approaches, tools and best practices used by the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development (MLHUD), development partners, and Civil Society Organisations to mainstream gender in land governance in Uganda, and what are the gaps and existing capacity needs?
  4. What is the impact of land registration on women's land rights, including women's participation in ongoing customary land registration processes?

The analysis was undertaken using desk review, Key Informant Interviews (KIIs) and Focus Group Discussions (FGDs), to acquire information from youth, women and men. The FGDs were categorized as married men, married women, unmarried persons and youths; interviewed separately. The KIIs were comprised of duty bearers in the government, local government land management and administration structures, cultural and traditional leaders and project implementing partners.

Most customary norms, traditions, and practices are driven by sheer ignorance and lack of knowledge, even among those regarded as elites in these communities. There is no visibility of the legal education dividends arising from sensitization efforts that have taken place in these communities. Men and women do not know the details in laws that protect women's land rights, resulting in intended and unintended continued violation of their land rights. It is also clear that there is rampant ignorance even in leadership because some decisions they make in settling land disputes leave one wondering whether they know what they are doing.

Gender mainstreaming tools and approaches are used by government ministries concerned with land tenure and governance. These require compliance with the affirmative action, that is, one-third of women membership for the approval of any board or committee; established GLTN tools, for example, the Gender Evaluation Criteria (GEC) is used alongside the access and control tool and the time analysis tool for productive and reproductive work developed by the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (MoGLSD). Sensitization communicates the rationale for conditional participation or specific nudges that invoke gender-specific action. However, implementation gaps and cultural resistance to change remain hurdles in achieving gender equity in land rights. Customary practices continue to perpetuate discriminatory practices against women, hindering their ability to access and control land effectively. The tools used to help identify practical and strategic needs and solutions are difficult to operationalize, requiring translation into local languages, prior training and sensitization to develop use proficiency and therefore have a resource outlay requirement that often fails many implementers.

The analysis concludes that the heterogeneity of women has a bearing on land rights programming. Land tenure experiences for women are as nuanced as their relationships with male kin. In programming and project work, therefore, they cannot simply be women; they need disentanglement to impact each category effectively. The analysis recommends focusing on land management and administration duty bearers, broadening the scope of secure tenure interventions beyond land certification to include the capacity to negotiate for better terms in sharecropping, land rentals and land grants and reforming sensitization to include actions that influence persons at household level and in private spaces for objectivity. While policy interventions have made positive strides, sustained efforts are needed to address cultural norms and structural barriers that hinder women's equal access to and control over land. Recognizing women's land rights as a crucial component of sustainable development can contribute to achieving gender equity and fostering inclusive land governance in Uganda

Mwesigye-A Gender and Land Analysis in Selected Customary Settings in Uganda-1391_a.docx
Mwesigye-A Gender and Land Analysis in Selected Customary Settings in Uganda-1391_b.ppt

How a land policy can support the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area ? Lessons from the Democratic Republic of Congo - DRC.

Mamadou Mballo, Jonathan Yakutiel

UN HABITAT/GLTN, Congo, Democratic Republic of the;

In recent years, the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo - DRC has launched economic and social development projects, in which land occupies a prominent place as a support for growth-enhancing investments and as a factor of social and political cohesion. It is noted, however, that the current land tenure system, as derived from the Act of 20 July 1973, has proved to be a limiting factor in terms of the expected progress in the land occupation and land use processes, which would have been sought to be concerted, integrated and sustainable. It is in this context that land reform has been initiated since 2012 with the technical and financial support of UN-Habitat/GLTN. Following extensive consultations that affected the country's 26 provinces, the DRC adopted a new land policy in 2022.

As land is the support of all economic activity, the DRC had a rendezvous with history to guarantee land governance aligned with international standards, particularly in terms of inclusiveness, accountability, investment promotion and environmental considerations. Indeed, without a clear formulation of a good land policy capable of guaranteeing healthy land tenure systems and therefore the rights of peaceful access to land for all; agricultural production, for example, will be difficult to achieve in rural, urban and peri-urban areas; farmers including foreign investors) will be reluctant to invest in the long term in improving their productivity; Vulnerable groups such as women, youth, internally displaced persons, returnees, indigenous peoples and the elderly will be limited in the enjoyment of their often unknown land rights.

To address these challenges and establish responsible land governance capable of supporting the achievement of a common African market, the Congolese land policy provides innovative responses. First, it commits Congolese decision-makers to put in place a framework for productive and responsible land investments through special economic zones and the use of public-private partnerships, to promote "intra-African trade" in accordance with the decision (Assembly/AU/Dec.394(XVIII)) of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union.

In addition, Congo's land policy promotes the local economic integration of large-scale land investments with a view to reducing land conflicts over large-scale land investments and with a view to socially anchoring such investments. Thus, the Congolese land policy pursues a double objective of the African continental free trade agreement: that of promoting industrial development through the diversification and development of regional value chains, the development of agriculture and food security and that of promoting and achieving inclusive and sustainable socio-economic development, gender equality.

Moreover, the Congolese land policy has sought to (i) regulate the duration of agricultural land titles by confirming a maximum duration of 25 years for any agricultural concession renewable indefinitely as long as the conditions of funds and form are respected, (ii) categorize land investments according to their size With a view to diversifying its economy, in particular by enhancing the agricultural sector, and ceasing to be an economy based essentially on mining rent, (iii) to establish a specific regime for land intended for real estate investments by allowing them to benefit from an incentive land taxation and parataxation.

Its promulgation will not only consecrate a new era in land governance that guarantees equitable, transparent and secure access to land resources through the establishment of a clear information system, an attractiveness of land for a more sustained agricultural production oriented both towards self-consumption but also and above all towards export on the one hand. On the other hand, will certainly accelerate the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area whose basic principles are among others "accountability, equity, transparency and dissemination of information".

Finally, the land use planning approach advocated by the land policy facilitates the various uses of land, including mining activities.


  • The general objective of this submission is to show, from the Congolese experience, the importance and necessity for States to have a good land policy to succeed in the African Continental Free Trade Area.
  • Specific objectives: more specifically, the presentation will focus on: (i) Presenting the content of the DRC's national land policy in its articulation and merits for the realization of the African Continental Free Trade Area; (ii) Engage in exchanges with stakeholders, including political decision-makers, on the need for land policies aligned with international standards; (iii) Conduct high-level advocacy for African policy makers in general and Congolese in particular for the adoption and effective implementation of land policies and laws to promote the achievement of an African common market.

Expected results

R1: The content of the DRC's national land policy in its articulation with the African Continental Free Trade Area is shared and promoted as a model of good practice

R2: Participants discuss best practices and international standards to ensure sustainable land governance in Africa for accelerated implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area

R3: Policy and practical recommendations are formulated for African decision-makers in general and Congolese decision-makers in particular for the effectiveness of the land policies adopted

Mballo-How a land policy can support the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area _a.docx
Mballo-How a land policy can support the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area _b.ppt

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