In Mongolia, the word “rangeland” is synonymous with “homeland.” It is a clue to the importance of rangelands in a country where a quarter of Mongolians are herders, and the wider livestock economy provides sustenance, income, and wealth to nearly half of the population. For many nomadic societies herding is at the core of their life. Around the world, rangelands support the livelihoods, social traditions, and resilience of 500 million people, primarily in low-income countries.
The data revolution – characterised by the transition to big data, open data and new digital data infrastructures  – is projected to make an astonishing 44 billion terabytes of digital data and information available by the end of 2020 . Despite this plethora of information now available to us, about 1 billion people in 140 countries still feel insecure about their land and property rights .
If we only get recognition of our Individual Forest Rights (IFR) over the land under the Forest Rights Act 2006,we will get out of the cycle of poverty."
This is the story of how dozens of communities in Mozambique are mapping and documenting their own land rights. "A New Hope" is the winner of the Land Portal's Second Data Story Contest, and is authored by the team at Terra Firma Mozambique.
This article was originally published through CSDS (Center for Social Development Studies) at Chulalongkorn University, Thailand. It can be found at: https://www.csds-chula.org/publications/2020/4/28/critical-nature-are-chinas-dams-on-the-mekong-causing-downstream-drought-the-importance-of-scientific-debate
The computerization of land records has allowed for the storage of mutations (land transfers) as data records into a database, instead of being a simple text entry. History of land mutations/transactions is also easily available.
We meet Rosalía in a roadside café in a dusty town in the Quiché department, in Guatemala’s Western Highlands. She lowers her voice whenever people come in – you never know who might be listening. Land is sensitive stuff, especially in Quiché, a region that still bears, perhaps more than any other part of Guatemala, the scars of the civil war (1960-1996) – as we will see. In 2018 alone, 15 defenders of land rights in Guatemala have been killed with total impunity, several of them in Quiché.
This story was submitted as part of the Land Portal Data Stories Contest and was the recipient of the second prize.
A data story from women in a semiarid region of Brazil
*This story was written by the following women: Ducicleide Maria da Silva, Gigliola Silva Araújo, Ianka Sayonara da Silva, Josefa Ferreira da Silva, Maria do Carmo da Conceição Carvalho, Maria Karoline Policarpo Silva, Manuella Donato, Mariana de Albuquerque Vilarim and Thalya Carla Vieira de Lima and Patricia Maria Chaves . It was translated by Sonia Jay Wright.*