Members of the Global Working Group on Land (GDWGL) attending CFS 46 gave informal on the concept note for a Global Land Governance Report (GLGR), as jointly developed by GLTN/UN-Habitat, FAO, and ILC. During the session, presentation of the proposed objectives, content of GLGR and institutional structure for the development of the report was made. The presentation was followed by a productive round of questions and discussion to further clarify the concept note; with comments and inputs to better shape the concept note also received.
The concept for the development of the GLGR received universal support from those in attendance and it was agreed that all ideas expressed should be taken as proposals and in support of a continuous consultation with the GDWGL on the development of this report, subject to further upcoming discussion. The GLGR is meant to accelerate and elevate the global interest, value of and contribution of land tenure and governance to sustainable development; take the insights and lessons learned on land governance that have been gained, and consolidate those findings and link land to current global themes including social, economic and environmental development, peace and security.
The GLGR concept note stems from discussions by GDWGL members physical meeting held last March during the WB Conference 2019 about increasing global advocacy on land tenure, possibly by elevating land via the SDGs to deliver not just better measurement, but more progress and achievement. This is a discussion that also reflected upon the proposal by GLTN/UN-Habitat and GLII on the development of the GLGR report. The land community has had ongoing efforts to address the global challenges facing land tenure and to build synergy between land and other development sectors. The development of the VGGTs, SDGs, AU-F&G, NUA and others have provided opportunities to raise the profile of land tenure for sustainable development.
The existence of diverse data sources and the good will among land actors to strengthen governance issues has led to enhanced coordination. The value of land tenure has been underscored in several global reports with the need for land governance related issues featured, including land tenure linked to achieving land degradation neutrality, climate change, addressing conflict, and achieving gender equality, thematic items which could be taken forward with the GLGR for further profiling and policy direction. The question remains on how to better track and document outcomes associated with the progress made in the land governance sector and provide better alignment with changes in social, economic and environmental sectors. There is a lack of a reference point for doing this and the GLGR could potentially fill this gap.
The discussion at the CFS46 highlighted the potential objectives, content, and governance structure for the development of the report. Overall, the proposal for the development of the GLGR was found to be progressive and will benefit from additional strategic thinking on its objectives and positioning in contributing to better land governance for sustainable development. There was also a call to include a wide involvement of stakeholders in order to properly capture the complexity inherent in land tenure and governance issues and increase ownership, with example of the role that a wide front of organizations has had in successfully keeping land-related indicators in the SDGs, and the availability of a range of data that different land actors can provide to the report.
Both GDWGL members present in the meeting and those not in the meeting were invited to submit will have the opportunity to submit concrete and constructive suggestions on the GLGR concept to the Platform Secretariat before the Group’s next physical meeting for further consideration. At the next physical meeting scheduled to take place in Abidjan, GLTN/UN-Habitat, FAO and ILC will present an improved version of the concept note following inputs received during the meeting in Rome and any additional inputs to be received from members to present a concrete propositions on how the report will be developed including a draft structure of the report, and structural options for its development for members discussions, inputs and decisions on the way forward.