The Land Portal is a global gateway for land related information that is building a specialized community of land experts from civil society, government, intergovernmental agencies, and academia.
Our Challenge: Information for Land Governance
Land governance is central to sustainable development. But without better data and information, many opportunities to improve land governance are being lost.
Goal 1.4 of the Sustainable Development Goals commits the world to: “By 2030, ensure that all men and women, in particular the poor and the vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services, ownership and control over land and other forms of property, inheritance, natural resources, appropriate new technology and financial services, including microfinance.”
With climate change increasing pressures on land, and the legacy of large-scale land deals in recent years, meeting this goal requires actions from many different stakeholders. These actions need to be supported by clear, accessible and inclusive data and information.
Our Mission: Linking Open Data and Land Rights
Data, big data and open data can often seem complicated, convoluted and at times, even distant words that have little meaning in our daily lives. More importantly for the purposes of our work, understanding how these concepts can lead to better land governance for the rural poor can present some complexities. It is in part for this reason that we seek to apply an information ecosystem model to the work that we do. What is an information ecosystem? We’ve tried to wrap our heads around it too, and have come up with the following:
The information ecosystem draws on the language of ecology and science to describe and better analyze information systems, understanding that organisms, much like pieces of information, are inter-connected and have relationships with each other
In more practical terms, what concrete issues do poor land users face when it comes to making the best use of this information ecosystem and how can the Land Portal help with this? It is widely known that poor land users face many barriers when it comes to making their voices heard at all levels of the spectrum, from national to international. More often than not, this is not because there is a lack of information about land, but rather because of disparities in information visibility, accessibility, consistency and completeness. The Land Portal aids organizations both big and small, in bringing data that can often get stuck in the dark corners of the web, to the forefront, and to life!