The State of Land Data: Transforming Africa Into a Powerhouse of the Future | Land Portal
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Neil Sorensen,
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Why do we need development policy?

Today, our lives are much more interconnected with those of people living on other continents than ever before. We have many advantages because of that. However, it also means that we have greater responsibility than previous generations, because the international community is facing challenges for which it needs to find global solutions. Radical changes need to be made – at global level and as soon as possible. Germany is taking on its responsibility for that.

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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.

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Date: Thursday, 22 June, 2023, 2:00-3:30 PM CEST | 3:00-4:30 EAT





In land governance, good data governance is critical to ensuring that land use and allocation are fair and accountable, and that tenure rights can be defended and protected. The consequences of a lack of good data governance include increased difficulty in unlocking the value of land as an asset, lack of awareness of land policies and legal frameworks that can undermine land tenure security, inability to collect taxes from property owners, and more. 

AGENDA 2063 is Africa's blueprint and master plan for transforming Africa into the global powerhouse of the future. It is the continent's strategic framework for achieving its goal of inclusive and sustainable development. Part of this framework focuses on good governance, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Effective land data and information systems are a critical component that will contribute to the achievement of these goals. 

The Network of Excellence on Land Governance in Africa (NELGA) aims to strengthen human and institutional capacities for the implementation of the AU Agenda on Land. NELGA supports African governments, policymakers and civil society by helping them to build strong, evidence-based knowledge and networks of land governance experts. One of its objectives is to generate data and information for monitoring and evaluation of land policy reforms.

The Land Portal Foundation's State of Land Information (SOLI) methodology takes an integrated approach to measure, document, assess and ultimately improve the state of land data at national and global levels, and to support stakeholders in achieving a more open land data ecosystem in support of data equity and inclusion. 

This webinar highlighted the importance of good land data governance for improving property rights and enabling more efficient government services. Participants learned how improved data governance can support individuals, communities, businesses, and government agencies to conduct their land-related activities ethically and with integrity. The webinar presented examples of SOLI research in Southern African countries conducted by the Land Portal Foundation in collaboration with NELGA researchers.




Laura Meggiolaro

Laura Meggiolaro, Managing Director, Land Portal Foundation (Moderator)


Nanny Wiechert

Nanny Wiechert, Head of Component, GIZ project “Strengthening Advisory Capacities for Land Governance in Africa” (SLGA)


Laura Meggiolaro

Charl-Thom Bayer, Land Information Management Specialist, Land Portal Foundation


Mahmoud Solomon

Dr. Mahmoud Solomon, Assistant Director of Survey and Mapping, Liberia Land Authority


Ken Kasera

Kenneth Kasera, User Engagement Lead, Regional Centre For Mapping Of Resources For Development (RCMRD)


Seydina Mouhamed Mbaye

Seydina Mouhamed Mbaye , Technical Advisor, GIZ project “Improving Land Management in Senegal”


Related content: 
Introducing the State of Land Information Index
4 May 2023
Land Portal Foundation

This side event will serve to introduce the Land Portal’s State of Land Information Index (SOLIndex), which measures openness of land data at the country and global level. The aim of this index is to make land-related findings more actionable and to complement existing land governance monitoring systems, such as tools developed by GLTN. The SOLIndex provides an overall indicator that assesses the openness of land data and information at global and country levels. The SOLIndex can be used as a diagnostic and advocacy tool for making land data more open and inclusive in support of good land governance.

This side event will explore the range of indicators that constitute the index, explore strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the collection of these indicators in an effort to obtain and incorporate feedback from GLTN Partners into the process of validating the indicator.

Blog post
 An abstract painting about Enhancing Access to Land Data

As an advocate for open land data, the Land Portal Foundation aims to improve access to land data, engage stakeholders, and support actions that promote data openness. I recently had the opportunity to introduce the State of Land Information Index (SOLIndex) and talk about the Open Up Guide at the Global Land Tool Network (GLTN) Partners’ Meeting in Nairobi and show how these tools play a vital role in improving access to land information.


The State of Land Information (SOLI) research and reports seek to provide an overview of publicly available data and information on key land issues. The aim of the research is to uncover the many different sources of land data and information at the country-level and help to identify actual data and information gaps, with a view to establishing a baseline for targeted interventions to improve the information ecosystem. 

Our robust methodology demonstrates not only trends and gaps in land data collection, but functions as a practical guide in support of improved visibility and usability of land data and information. SOLI reports serve as the first step in the implementation of the Open Up Guide for Land Governance. 

In 2021, we kicked off SOLI research in five countries in Africa. We aim to develop SOLI reports for a dozen countries in Africa by 2024.

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