land and gender

Land & Gender

To achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and promote gender equity in access to land, laws, institutions, and customary practices that are gender discriminatory need to be addressed.

To achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and promote gender-equitable land tenure, discriminatory laws, institutions, and customary practices need to be addressed.

From large land acquisitions that displace communities without due compensation, to the encroachment of mining on indigenous lands, to the brunt of climate change and natural disasters, to everyday land and property deprivation by kin or state, women are typically more harshly impacted by land tenure insecurity due to discriminatory laws and lingering social bias.

For millions of rural women their nexus to the land – their lifeline, home, livelihood, and social security – often teeters on the strength of their relationship to their father, husband, brother or son. In many contexts, they lack direct, unmediated rights to the land. They face layers of discrimination in both the law and in practice, fueled by their gender, race, ethnicity, affiliation, orientation, age, or social status.  

Laws and social norms impose barriers to women’s right to own and access to land. In more than half the world, laws, and more often gender bias, and discriminatory social norms[1] entrench women’s unequal rights to access, use, inherit, transfer, control, benefit from, and own land discount their input into decisions about the fate of their land, and dismiss their compensation or redress claims when the land is taken by an investor, corporation, powerful local leader, the government, or even their kin.

Research affirms that secure land rights can be transformational[2] for women, their families, and communities. The Global Agenda for Sustainable Development[3] spotlights land as a critical driver, and regional efforts reflect growing political support for women’s land rights. Broad coalitions of NGOs and civil society rally around regional and global calls. The Deliver for Good campaign[4] spotlights women’s land rights as critical to a holistic gender-responsive implementation of the sustainable development agenda. A recently launched Africa Land Policy Initiative campaign calls for 30 percent of documented land in women’s name individually or jointly[5].

Women across the globe have formed collectives and networks and forged innovative approaches to secure land rights for communities, within communities and households. Women to Kilimanjaro mobilized women across Africa to climb up the continent’s highest peak to stand up for women’s right to land[6]. Indigenous women in Latin America and Asia – often at great personal risk – are leading movements for rights to their land and resources[7].


Disclaimer: The data displayed on the Land Portal is provided by third parts indicated as the data source or as the data provider. The Land Portal team is constantly working to ensure the highest possible standard of data quality and accuracy, yet the data is by its nature approximate and will contain some inaccuracies. The data may contain errors introduced by the data provider(s) and/or by the Land Portal team. In addition, this page allows you to compare data from different sources, but not all indicators are necessarily statistically comparable. The Land Portal Foundation (A) expressly disclaims the accuracy, adequacy, or completeness of any data and (B) shall not be liable for any errors, omissions or other defects in, delays or interruptions in such data, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. Neither the Land Portal Foundation nor any of its data providers will be liable for any damages relating to your use of the data provided herein.


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    Latest News

    20 June 2017

    Women from lakeside communities in Phnom Penh are leading a fight against the lake's destruction - but have faced a brutal crackdown by police

    PHNOM PENH, June 23 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Cambodian activists fighting plans to transform Phnom Penh's largest lake into a luxury development made a tactical decision when they took to the streets - put women on the frontline to show a "gentle" face and prevent violence.

    But it was wishful thinking.

    20 June 2017

    LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Each week, at least four men and women vanish without trace or are found dead, cut down in a hail of gunfire.

    In Cambodia, a single mother is separated from her two children, arrested and locked up in prison.

    On the dry savannahs of Brazil's Mato Grosso do Sul, farmers shoot dead a 26-year-old indigenous man in broad daylight.

    In Bangladesh, a university professor receives death threats from an al Qaeda-inspired militant group.

    14 June 2017

    "People have many reasons to come after me - because I talk about land grabbing, because I talk about the rights of indigenous people, of crimes against minorities"

    MUMBAI, June 14 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - In her long career defending the rights of women, indigenous people and ethnic minorities, Sultana Kamal has faced numerous threats and intimidation. But none over a statue.

    12 June 2017

    NEW DELHI, Jun 12 2017 (IPS) - In Meghalaya, India’s northeastern biodiversity hotspot, all three major tribes are matrilineal. Children take the mother’s family name, while daughters inherit the family lands.

    Because women own land and have always decided what is grown on it and what is conserved, the state not only has a strong climate-resistant food system but also some of the rarest edible and medicinal plants, researchers said.

    Latest Blogs


    Farmers in Mali have gained critical new rights to their traditional land—and rural communities have gained much-needed economic stability—as a result of a historic new law.


    Property rights are a global concern that needs to be understood by all of us, write Monique Villa & Peter Rabley


    By Chris Jochnick, President and CEO of Landesa

    The development community has experienced various “revolutions” over the years – from microfinance to women’s rights, from the green revolution to sustainable development.  Each of these awakenings has improved our understanding of the challenges we face; each has transformed the development landscape, mostly for the better.

    Latest Events

    27 November 2017 to 30 November 2017


    Teresina, Piauí, Brasil, 64000-000

    A Comissão Organizadora da IV Reunião Nordestina de Ciência do Solo já definiu a data do evento, que ocorrerá entre os dias 27 a 30/11/2017 na cidade de Teresina, PI. Segundo o Coordenador do evento, o Dr. Henrique Antunes de Souza, da Embrapa Meio-Norte, nos próximos dias será disponibilizado o site do evento contendo informações sobre programação, preço das inscrições, modelo de resumo, normas de submissão, etc. A seguir são apresentados os membros que compõem a Comissão Organizadora da IV RNCS:



    4 October 2017 to 5 October 2017


    Vår Gård Saltsjöbaden , Stockholm
    Stockholm SE


    Join us for the 3rd international conference on community land and resource rights

    23 August 2017 to 25 August 2017


    Curitiba, Brasil Curitiba
    Latin America and the Caribbean

    Nos dias 23,24 e 25 de agosto do presente ano, levar-se-á a cabo o TERCEIRO CONGRESSO IBEROAMERICANO DE SOLO URBANO na cidade de Curitiba, Brasil, com o tema “O solo na nova agenda urbana”, organizado de maneira conjunta pelo Colégio Mexiquence AC, a Universidade Federal do Paraná, a Universidade Pontifícia Católica do Paraná e a Universidade Positivo.

    11 August 2017 to 11 October 2017


    Av. Presidente Vargas, 417/ 8º 20.071-003 – Rio de Janeiro – RJ
    2224-8577 Rio de Janeiro

    O Comitê Executivo da Rede Brasileira de Pesquisa em Soberania e Segurança Alimentar e Nutricional tem a satisfação de confirmar a realização do III Encontro Nacional de Pesquisa em SSAN nos dias 08, 09 e 10 de Novembro de 2017, na cidade de Curitiba (PR), em local ainda a ser escolhido entre as opções existentes.

    A programação do Encontro ainda está sendo finalizada, porém, podemos antecipar as seguintes informações:


    20 June 2017 to 4 July 2017
    Malcolm Childress

    From June 20th to July 4th, 2017, the Land Portal, in collaboration with GLTN/GLII, Land Alliance and LandAC, will co-facilitate a dialogue through which a variety of stakeholders will focus on discussions centered around measuring the perception of land tenure security in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  

    5 June 2017 to 16 June 2017
    Godfrey Massay
    Lukasz Czerwinski

    From June 5-16, 2017, Landesa and the Land Portal will co-facilitate a dialogue through which a variety of stakeholders will contribute to discussion on the principles and practices of land-based investments, with a focus on the Tanzanian context. This is intended as part of the broader conversation on responsible investment in land principles, guidelines and practices that has proliferated since, at least, the 2009 food crisis and subsequent ‘land grabs’ that swept the global south

    28 November 2016 to 23 December 2016
    Nicholas Tagliarino
    Marcello Demaria

    Land tenure changes are on the rise throughout the world as a result of increased migration from rural to urban areas, expansion of infrastructure, commercial pressures on agricultural land, extractive activities, and climate change. Shifts in land tenure arrangements are proceeding through compulsory acquisitions (i.e. expropriations) and voluntary market transactions, such large-scale land leases and concessions.



    Women Legal Aid Centre


    Tanzania Women Lawyers Association


    Legal and Human Rights Centre


    Pastoralists Indigenous Non Governmental Organizations Forum

    PINGO's Forum

    Research on Poverty Alleviation


    Ujamaa Community Resource Team


    Agricultura Familiar e Agroecologia



    Pa-O Youth Organization


    Resource Equity

    Pro-femme Twese Hamwe


    Plan International CIDSE-Laos

    Women for Women International

    Global Land Tool Network


    Huairou Commission

    International Center for Research on Women


    Just Associates



    Manuela Ramos

    Mujeres Federadas Argentinas

    Mujeres rurales de Latinoamérica y el Caribe


    Committee on the Status of Women


    Social Institutions & Gender Index


    Tanzania Gender Networking Program


    Working Group for Women and Land Ownership


    Commission on the Status of Women


    Donne in Campo


    Gender Action

    Global Coalition on Women and AIDS


    GROOTS Kenya

    Association for Women's Rights in Development

    Association for Women's Rights in Development

    Asian Rural Women's Coalition (ARWC)

    Asian Rural Women's Coalition


    Oxfam International

    Landesa - Rural Development Institute


    International Land Coalition




    Displaying 1 - 6 of 1816
    Institutional & promotional materials
    December 2017

    La Plataforma de Beijing, aprobada en la Cuarta Conferencia Mundial sobre la Mujer (1995), señala el deber de los gobiernos de emprender reformas administrativas y legislativas para dar a la mujer acceso pleno y equitativo a los recursos económicos, incluido el derecho a la herencia y la posesión de tierras, el acceso a créditos, recursos y tecnologías. Adicionalmente, existen varios tratados y leyes internacionales y nacionales que abordan la necesidad de garantizar estos derechos para promover el desarrollo y garantizar la igualdad.