Contested Global Landscapes

A Multidisciplinary Initiative of the Cornell Institute for the Social Sciences

International Academic Conference on
Global Land Grabbing II
17-19 October 2012

LDPI conference schedule

The Land Deal Politics Initiative (LDPI) is organizing a second international academic workshop on ‘Global Land Grabbing’ to be held on 17-19 October 2012 at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, USA. The event will be co-organized and hosted by the Cornell Department of Development Sociology. Among the confirmed keynote speakers is the new Director-General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Brazilian academic, José Graziano da Silva.

This conference is a follow up to the highly successful 2011 conference, Global Land Grabbing, held 6-8 April at the Institute for Development Studies at the University of Sussex, Brighton, England. At that conference, 120 papers were presented that sketched the broad outlines of land grabs happening across the globe. A convergence of factors has been driving a revaluation of land by powerful economic and political actors. This is occurring across the world, but especially in the global South. As a result, there has been a dramatic rise in large-scale land deals unfolding worldwide. The phrase ‘global land grab’ has become a catch-all phrase to describe this explosion of (trans)national commercial and government-driven land transactions revolving around the production and sale of food and biofuels, conservation and mining activities.

The purpose of the 2012 conference is to continue deepening and broadening our understanding of global land deals. An overriding concern of the conference is with agrarian change: what changes in broad agrarian structures are emerging? Are land deals motivated by new forms of agrarian capitalism or repeats of the past? What is the nature and extent of rural social differentiation – in terms of class, gender, ethnicity – following changes in land use and land property relations as well as organizations of production and exchange? At the same time, we have remained open to broader topics around land grab intersections with political economy, political ecology and political sociology, and are convening a series of parallel sessions on a range of themes.