Towards sustainable land use? Land management, knowledge claims and land practices in the global north

Management of agricultural resources to sustain a growing world population is seen as one of the key challenges of our time. Agricultural land is a vital yet limited resource – we depend upon it for food production, but it is also in direct competition with other land-based activities, such as housing, infrastructure, mining, investment, carbon off-setting, nature conservation, recreation and industry. This working group will focus on understanding principles and practices of land use in the global north. Land is a finite resource different interests and agendas compete over. The protection of land through regulations and law has always caused controversy and conflict. With varying interests and objectives, come also different means and modes of power. What is sustainable land use in a context of climate change and global population increase? How can this be achieved across levels of governance and through different means of participation? How are various forms of knowledge integrated and how do they influence land use governance processes?

Subject areas can be, but are not restricted to:

  • Processes of balancing different societal goals to achieve economic, ecologic and social sustainability
  • The role of measurement and models in land use governance
  • Transparency in political processes
  • The dilemma between collective values and private property rights

This working group welcomes papers that contribute to a broadening of the understanding of land use processes in the global north.


Heidi Vinge, Centre for Rural Research and Dep. of Sociology & Political Science, NTNU

Elin Slätmo, Unit for Human Geography, Depatment of Economy and Society, University of Gothenburg


List of participants