Can Land Administration in Post-Conflict Environment Facilitate the Post-Conflict State Building? a Research Problem

Dimo Todorovski, J.A. Zevenbergen, Paul van der Molen (Emeritus Professor)

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There is a very specific correlation between land and conflict; they meet each other on every point of the cycle of the armed conflict and in the post-conflict period. Although land was identified as a critical gap in international response capacities and the awareness about the vital importance of addressing the housing land and property issues within the context of post-conflict peace building has increased, experiences show that there are only a few cases where land issues were addressed in the post-conflict period, and humanitarian organizations in this period mainly focus on internally displaced persons and refugee’s related issues, and restitution of the situation as it was before the conflict. There is an identified need to ensure that land issues are put on the agenda of the international community and that they are tackled in the peace treaty document or national land policies of the states emerging from conflict. As the goal of a ’land administration process is to support the implementation of land policy using the aspects of land management’, land administration is the appropriate instrument for implementing land related parts of the peace treaty document or national land policies of post-conflict states. Post-conflict period is complex, fluid and enormously difficult. After a war sometimes a new state is formed or the old one is coming out from the conflict. Both need to follow a post-conflict state building process. State-building is defined as purposeful action to build capacity, institutions and legitimacy of the state in relation to an effective political process to negotiate the mutual demands between the state and societal groups. Main characteristics of the post-war society are: institutional weaknesses, economic and social problems, and serious security problems. ‘Land administration in post-conflict environment’ in this research is recognised as land administration performing in peace - normal life conditions - but loaded with the characteristics of the post-conflict environment. Having an overview of the post-conflict situations, the potential of land administration as an instrument for implementing land policies, the concepts of state building and the acknowledged characteristics of war-torn societies, it could be derived that land administration can be seen as one element – facilitator – of the overall process of post-conflict state building. This phenomenon needs in depth and evidence based research.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages21
JournalFIG Peer Review Journal
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2012
EventFIG Working week 2012: Knowing to manage the territory, protect the environment, evaluate the cultural heritage - Rome, Italy
Duration: 6 May 201210 May 2012


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