Madagascar is a country with an abundance of natural resources that have attracted an increasing number of investments and tourists. The economy of the country is largely dependent on agriculture, which also provides the livelihood for more than 60% of the population. However, the economic growth of the country slowed down after de coup d’etat of 2009, which was in part the consequence of the government’s decision to grant or lease agricultural land to a South Korea company.

Madagascar has both a formal land tenure system and a community-based customary land tenure system. The Land Law of 2005 classifies land as state or private, establishes land tenure types and provides procedures for land registration. The Law No. 2006-031 sets the juridical regime for untitled private property and it established the procedures for individuals and groups to obtain certificates in order to recognize their rights from the local land administration offices.

Land disputes generally involve individuals and families over land ownership and individuals and the state over the control of land and natural resources, which are often the consequence of the co-existence of a formal and customary land tenure system. Conflicts are generally resolved within the communities thanks to clearly defined land tenure rules and process. However, it is possible that the two systems overlap regarding issues related to the acquisition and ownership of land. 

Source of the narrative

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Land Governance Assessment Framework (LGAF)

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    • Very Good Practice
    • Good Practice
    • Weak Practice
    • Very Weak Practice
    • Missing Value

    Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure

    Legend: National laws adoption of the VGGT principle
    • Fully adopt
    • Partially adopt
    • Not adopted
    • Missing Value

    Note: The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (The VGGTs) were endorsed by the Committee on World Food Security in 2012.

    The "VGGT indicators" dataset has been created by Nicholas K. Tagliarino, PhD Candidate at the University of Groningen, with support from Daniel Babare and Myat Noe (LLB Students, University of Groningen). The indicators assess national laws in 50 countries across Asia, Africa, and Latin America against international standards on expropriation, compensation, and resettlement as established by Section 16 of the VGGTs.

    Each indicator relates to a principle established in section 16 of the VGGTs. Hold the mouse against the small "i" button above for a more detailed explanation of the indicator.

    Answering the questions posed by these indicators entails analyzing a broad range of national-level laws, including national constitutions, land acquisition acts, land acts, community land acts, agricultural land acts, land use regulations, and some court decisions.




    Displaying 1 - 6 of 296
    Journal Articles & Books
    December 2012

    The impact of climate change and anthropogenic deforestation on biodiversity is of growing concern worldwide. Disentangling how past anthropogenic and natural factors contributed to current biome distribution is thus a crucial issue to understand their complex interactions on wider time scales and to improve predictions and conservation strategies. This is particularly important in biodiversity hotspots, such as Madagascar, dominated by large open habitats whose origins are increasingly debated.

    Conference Papers & Reports
    December 2006

    The effect of globalization on the environment and natural resource use in developing countries is hotly debated. We contribute to this debate through the analysis of primary data collected with small contract farmers in Madagascar that produce vegetables for export to Europe. Strong spillover effects of these trade opportunities on land use exist. Using a matched plot sampling design, the productivity of rice - the main domestically consumed staple - is shown to be two thirds higher on those fields that were contracted during the off-season for the production of vegetables.

    Journal Articles & Books
    December 2011

    Protected Areas (PAs) form a core component of efforts to conserve biodiversity, but are designated for a variety of reasons. We assessed the effectiveness of PAs in covering the ranges of 157 globally threatened terrestrial bird species in mainland Africa and Madagascar. To reduce commission errors, rather than using Extent of Occurrence (EOO) as a measure of distribution, we estimated the Extent of potentially Suitable Habitat (ESH) for each species within its EOO, using data on habitat preferences and land cover.

    Journal Articles & Books
    December 2015

    In many developing countries, people rely on natural resources for subsistence and cash income. The trade ban on species listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List may be counter-productive, as increasing the rarity and thus price of these species acts as a stimulus to illegal markets rather than a deterrent. Since illegal markets cannot have legal property rights, there is no basis for any form of sustainable harvesting based on property rights.

    Journal Articles & Books
    December 2010

    Slash and burn agriculture is a traditional and predominant land use practice in Madagascar and its relevance in the context of forest preservation is significant. At the end of a cycle of culture, the fields become mostly weed covered and the soil fertility starts to drop. As a consequence, these fields are abandoned (they are called “monka”) and the farmers, in the best case, re-use old surfaces where the vegetation has recovered to some extent. Nevertheless, some of the farmers continue to extend part of their cultures into the natural forest.

    Journal Articles & Books
    December 2011

    Faced with the low success rates of protected areas in conserving natural forests and supporting rural development, the Malagasy government recently chose to transfer forest resource management to local communities. Feedback about the implementation of this new policy suggests that agriculture continues to drive deforestation. This article explores farmers' household livelihood strategies and land use changes in response to changing forest access rules arising from community-based land management.