The Land Portal is a Foundation registered in the Netherlands in 2014.
The vision of the Portal is to improve land governance to benefit those with the most insecure land rights and the greatest vulnerability to landlessness through information and knowledge sharing.
As a service provider in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development and international education work, we are dedicated to shaping a future worth living around the world. We have over 50 years of experience in a wide variety of areas, including economic development and employment promotion, energy and the environment, and peace and security. The diverse expertise of our federal enterprise is in demand around the globe – from the German Government, European Union institutions, the United Nations, the private sector, and governments of other countries.
Reviving Documentation of Property Rights
Cadasta Foundation is dedicated to the support, continued development and growth of the Cadasta Platform – an innovative, open source suite of tools for the collection and management of ownership, occupancy, and spatial data that meets the unique challenges of this process in much of the world.
The global data revolution has undoubtedly reached the land sector. Land information is increasingly created, stored and shared as data.
The land sector is regularly ranked among the sectors where people are most likely to pay bribes for access to services, according to Transparency International’s Global Corruption Barometer. Corrupt government action and the looting of state property are often considered a priority development challenge. Open Data has been put forward as a tool to increase transparency, support innovation and increase civic engagement. Open Data is data that can be freely used, shared and built-on by anyone, anywhere, for any purpose. The argument that open data, as a key public good, empowers citizens to gain more insight on government spendings and decisions and gives them the power to hold their governments accountable for those actions, is one of the main arguments used in support of Open Data.
Still, land ownership data systematically ranks lowest on the Global Open Data Index or the Open Data Barometer: year after year, the land ownership dataset is marked least likely to be open. The Land Portal’s State of Land Information reports piloted in four East African countries corroborate these conclusions. The land ownership chapter in the 2019 State of Open Data report also concludes that, when it comes to land ownership data, “we are confronted by a transparency gap and a messy reality of patchy and overlapping recordkeeping and data systems”.
STATEMENT OF THE WEEK:
OPEN DATA IS NOT A MAGIC BULLET
It takes more than Open Data to fight corruption.
While the excitement over the potential of open data as a tool to combat corruption is widely shared across the world, evidence of this impact is difficult to find. Read more about the reasoning behind this second statement in this brief note.
Questions to guide your responses to this statement are:
What are the needs of the different stakeholders to use Open Data? Which capacities or tools are needed to increase data use?
How to avoid that increasing accessibility to open land data increases the digital divide?
How can we ensure that use of Open Data is used as a means to combat corruption without invoking harmful side effects, such as putting land rights defenders at risk? What safeguards are needed to ensure data is used responsibly?
We look forward to your contributions!