Scaling in Context – Towards responsible scaling in land governance interventions | Land Portal
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Date of publication: 
Outubro 2023
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LAND-at-scale (LAS) is a land governance support program for developing countries from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, which was launched in 2019. The objective of the program is to directly strengthen essential land governance components for men, women and youth that have the potential to contribute to structural, just, sustainable and inclusive change at scale in lower- and middle-income countries/regions/landscapes.

The central aim of the program is to scale successful land governance initiatives, and to generate and disseminate lessons learnt to facilitate scaling (see for a detailed discussion: Meij and Vintges, 2021). Strengthening land governance, however, is a complex process which requires different approaches depending on the region or country involved, tailored to local, regional or national socio-political, historical and legal contexts. The strong focus of the LAS programme on just and equitable land governance actually seems to require bottom-up and inclusive approaches – the intended beneficiaries need to be involved and endorse the policies and activities (ibid.: 2). At the same time, this results in questions and dilemmas concerning how to scale initiatives which have been designed through bottom-up and participatory approaches, and are strongly embedded in local contexts. These issues were also raised during the first partner consultation organized in collaboration with the Knowledge Management partners of LAS in 2022 in conjunction with the LANDac annual conference (see Chamberlain and Betsema, 2022). In response, the Thematic Knowledge Agenda in the LAS knowledge management programme has made scaling a key area of focus. This concept paper serves as a starting point for the consultation and discussion with the LAS- partners.

The paper is based on a literature review, as well as discussions with a selection of partners involved in the Land-at-scale programme. Much of the literature on scaling in relation to land governance focuses on titling and administration, often in combination with technological innovations (see e.g. Thakur, 2020; Koeva et al., 2021), or challenges related to scaling fit-forpurpose approaches to land administration and governance (see e.g. Mekking, 2021). The latter body of literature is linked more directly to the questions raised by the Land-at-scale project partners. There is also a body of literature on scaling in relation to interventions in food production and food systems, which is also relevant for the exploration of scaling in relation to land. Finally, scaling is an important subject discussed by scholars in the field of (sustainable) transition management. Insights from these bodies of literature were combined for the development of this concept paper.

Autores e editores

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

Marja Spierenburg


Leiden University was founded in 1575 and is one of Europe’s leading international research universities. It has seven faculties in the arts, sciences and social sciences, spread over locations in Leiden and The Hague. The University has over 5,500 staff members and 25,800 students. The motto of the University is 'Praesidium Libertatis' – Bastion of Freedom.

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