Recent years have seen a globalization of property rights as the Western conception of property over land has extended across the world. As formerly community-owned land and natural resources are privatized and titling schemes proliferate, Property Rights from Below questions the trend towards treating land as a commodity and explores alternatives to the Western model.
As we enter an era of resource scarcity and as competition for land and associated natural resources increases, purchasing power cannot become the sole criterion for land allocation; and the law of supply and demand in increasingly financialized markets cannot become the sole metric through which the value of land is determined. Using a range of examples from around the world, Property Rights from Below demonstrates that alternatives to this model often emerge from social innovations supported by local communities, and that there is an urgent need for a broader political imagination when it comes to land governance.
This innovative cross-disciplinary perspective on the pressing problems surrounding global property rights will be of interest to academics, students and professionals with an interest in property law, development economics and land governance.
1. Property Rights From Below: An Introduction to the Debate
Olivier De Schutter and Balakrishnan Rajagopal
Part I: The Global Commodification of Land and Competition for Resources
2. When Primitive Accumulation Inhabits Advanced Systems
3. Land Grab Governance and the Crisis of Market Rule
4. From transgression to normative innovation: Land conflict resolution in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo
An Ansoms, Emery Mudinga, Aymar Nyenyezi et al
Part II: Social Mobilization and the Counter-Movement
5. Forging a Single Proletariat
J. Phillip Thompson
6. Urban Squatters
Sonia Katyal and Eduardo Peñalver
7. Land and territory: struggles for land and territorial rights in Brazil
Sergio Sauer and Luís Felipe Perdigão de Castro
8. Right to Land and Control Over Territories: How Peasants Movements are Claiming and Creating New Rights
Part III: Shaping Alternatives: from Commodification to Rebuilding the Commons
9. Facilitating the Commons Inside Out
Hanoch Dagan and Tsilly Dagan
10. Urban Commons and Property
11. When Land is Inalienable. Territorial transformations and peasants’ property rights in Mexico
Real Property Rights are central to the global economy and provide a legal framework for how society (be it developed or customary) relates to land and buildings. We need to better understand property rights to ensure sustainable societies, careful use of limited resources and sound ecological stewardship of our land and water. Contemporary property rights theory is dynamic and needs to engage thinkers who are prepared to think outside their disciplinary limitations.
The Routledge Complex Real Property Rights Series strives to take a transdisciplinary approach to understanding property rights and specifically encourages heterodox thinking. Through rich international case studies, the goal of the series is to build models to connect theory to observed reality, informing potential policy outcomes. This series is both an ideal forum and reference for students and scholars of property rights and land issues.
Video interviews with the series authors and editors can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCm6WmSmaP8spLX0GlFRiSjw