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Land grabbing, sustainable development and human rights

Grant, Evadne; Das, Onita


Onita Das
Senior Lecturer in Law


© 2015 Cambridge University Press. Increasing investment in agricultural land by global corporations and investors from wealthy developed nations in poorer, less developed countries has significant human rights and environmental impacts. Proponents of such land deals argue that they provide opportunities for improvements in agricultural practices and generate employment, which will benefit economic growth in host countries. However, there is growing evidence that the phenomenon known as 'land grabbing' displaces poor and vulnerable populations and damages the environment, which in turn exacerbates poverty and food insecurity. This article explores the impact of land grabbing in Ethiopia and examines the human rights and sustainable development frameworks within which land grabbing takes place. The article argues that a human rights approach is fundamental to reconcile the sustainable development imperatives of economic development and environmental protection in the context of land grabbing. It advocates an integrated human rights and sustainable development approach as a holistic framework for assessing the impact of land grabbing and for the development of policy and regulatory responses.


Grant, E., & Das, O. (2015). Land grabbing, sustainable development and human rights. Transnational Environmental Law, 4(2), 289-317.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2015
Journal Transnational Environmental Law
Print ISSN 2047-1025
Electronic ISSN 2047-1033
Publisher Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 4
Issue 2
Pages 289-317
Keywords land grabbing, food security, environment, sustainable development, human rights, Ethiopia
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : Final version published online 24 March 2015 by Cambridge University Press. View online here:


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