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Married Women's Rights to Land in China's Traditional Farming Areas

Full Citation: Li, Y. and Yin-Sheng, X., "Married Women's Rights to Land in China's Traditional Farming Areas," 15(49) JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY CHINA 621 (2006). - This paper focuses on women’s land rights in their maiden village in traditional farming areas, and shows, based on an analysis of a case study combined with a questionnaire survey, that married women’s land rights tend to be retained in their parent’s village with the implementation of new policy and land contract laws, but that they have almost no rights in their maiden families after marriage, due to the influence of traditional marriage notions and customs. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
China
Creator:
Li, Y. and Yin-Sheng, X.
Year:
2006

Who Owns the Land? Gender and Land-Titling Programmes in Latin America

Full citation: Deere, C. D. and Leon, M., "Who Owns the Land? Gender and Land-Titling Programmes in Latin America," 1(3) JOURNAL OF AGRARIAN CHANGE 440 (July 2001). - The main focus of state intervention in Latin American agriculture in the 1990s was on land-titling programs, designed to promote security of tenure and enliven land markets. A review of seven of these projects suggests that they were often designed without sufficient attention to civil codes and marital regimes that protect women's property rights. They often ignored that a household's endowment of land may consist of three forms of property: the wife's, the husband's, and jointly owned property. By assuming that the family farm is owned by the male household head, these projects trampled upon women's ownership rights. Nonetheless, the share of female beneficiaries of land-titling projects has been much higher than the share of women adjudicated land under the agrarian reforms of previous decades. This is partly because the primary way that women acquire land is through inheritance, and inheritance appears to be more gender equitable than other manners of acquiring land. It is also due to the impact of the more gender-equitable agrarian legislation of the current period, itself a product of the impact of women's movements on the state. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Multiple Countries
Creator:
Deere, C. D. and Leon, M.
Year:
2001

Women, Marriage and Asset Inheritance in Uganda

Full citation: Doss, C., Truong, M., Nabanoga, G. and Namaalwa, J., "Women, Marriage and Asset Inheritance in Uganda," 184 CPRC WORKING PAPER (Chronic Poverty Research Centre 2010). - The study uses a combination of qualitative and quantitative research. The first phase involved interviewing focus groups and key informants about assets held by men and women in the communities and on patterns of acquisition and social norms surrounding asset ownership and inheritance. The second phase was a household and intra-household survey. Life-history interviews were also conducted. The study found that many women gain access to land or ownership through their marital relationships. Both husbands and wives often indicate that land is owned jointly. However, rights over land differ for men and women, with women having fewer rights than men. Women do inherit land, both from their fathers and from their husbands, although it is much more common for men to inherit land. While women may successfully access land through their husbands, and may even claim ownership, these rights frequently depend on the stability of the marriage. Under most customary systems, a widow can claim land that belonged to her husband only if she has a son. The land will be inherited by the son, and the mother can continue to farm it until the son is grown-up and can claim it. Women without sons are at risk of losing access to the land, depending on their relationships with their husband’s family and the community. In spite of this arrangement, some widows have been able to maintain independent claims on land. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Uganda
Creator:
Doss, C., Truong, M., Nabanoga, G. and Namaalwa, J.
Year:
2011

Gender and Property Rights: A Critical Issue in Urban Economic Development

Full citation: Rabenhorst, C. and Bean, A., "Gender and Property Rights: A Critical Issue in Urban Economic Development," IHC PAPER (August 2011). - This paper looks at: (1) gender equality in property rights, i.e., the rights of women to participate in property use and ownership with full legal and societal protection; (2) the importance to economic development of residential and commercial property rights in urban areas; and (3) the role of women in economic development. It profiles the Tanzania Settlements Trust, which forms groups of women that advocate together and provide support for tenure and housing access. It recommends that projects make gender a focus, adequately assess political, legal, and socio-cultural factors regarding gender, and provide training to the community covering: the legal rights of women specifically, including inheritance and divorce; special problems encountered by women such as documentation, location of registration offices, access to credit; involvement of both men and women in the adjudication process and in registration of rights; and clear communication of the benefits of participation.

[Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Multiple Countries
Creator:
Rabenhorst, C. and Bean, A.
Year:
2011

Realizing women's rights to land and other productive resources

Full citation: OHCHR and UNWOMEN. (2013). “Realizing women's rights to land and other productive resources.” - This piece identifies barriers to women’s access to, use of and control over land and other productive resources as primarily being inadequate legal standards and/or ineffective implementation at national and local levels, as well as discriminatory cultural attitudes and practices at the institutional and community level. The publication provides guidance to support the adoption and effective implementation of laws, policies, and programs to respect, protect, and fulfill women’s rights to land and other productive resources, including an overview of international and regional legal and policy instruments recognizing women’s rights to land and other productive resources, and ways of advancing a human rights-based approach to women’s rights to land and other productive resources. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Multiple Countries
Creator:
OHCHR and UNWOMEN
Year:
2013

Cocoa, Marriage, Labour, and Land in Ghana: Some Matrilineal and Patrilineal Perspectives

Full citation: Duncan, B.A. (2010). “Cocoa, Marriage, Labour, and Land in Ghana: Some Matrilineal and Patrilineal Perspectives.” Africa: Journal of the International African Institute 80 (2), 301–21. - Based on field research conducted between April 2006 and November 2007 in four matrilineal and two patrilineal communities located in the Brong Ahafo, Western and Volta regions, the study sets out important changes taking place within the institutions of marriage, land tenure and conjugal labour relations, within the cocoa production sector. Many scholars have documented systems of land exchange between husbands and wives for services rendered within the context of cocoa farming. This study shows that new and previously undocumented forms of informal conjugal unions may be coming into existence in the context of cocoa production, and these new arrangements provide much less land tenure security for women.

In the matrilineal communities especially, formal marriage arrangements appear to be an exception rather than the prevailing norm. Contract marriages, popular in the western region, are essentially seasonal arrangements made between men and women particularly during the cocoa harvesting season, which lasts for a period of three to six months, after which the relationship is either renewed or terminated. No land is exchanged in a contract marriage. Consensual unions are not as secure as formal marriages, but are a step toward formal marriage. In one case, the Ghanaian court said women in such relationships were entitled to a one-third share of cocoa land which they had assisted their partners to develop. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Ghana
Creator:
Duncan, B.A.
Year:
2010

Towards Customary Legal Empowerment in Namibia: Enhancing gender equality in customary justice systems

Full citation: Ubink, J.M. (2011). “Towards Customary Legal Empowerment in Namibia: Enhancing gender equality in customary justice systems.” International Development Law Organisation. - In Namibia, national authorities have made various interventions aimed at enhancing the functioning of customary law and traditional leadership. These efforts include both the creation of institutional linkages as well as community-based activities. One issue has been the position of women under customary law, and especially the fact that widows often have no rights to their deceased husbands’ lands. At a workshop, the traditional leaders present unanimously decided that widows should not be chased from their lands or out of their homes and that they should not be asked to pay again for the land. The president of the country was also a proponent of the change. This research found that this statement led to positive change. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Namibia
Creator:
Ubink, J.M.
Year:
2011

Empowering Widows: An Overview of policies and programmes in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka

Full citation: UN Women. (2014). “Empowering Widows: An Overview of policies and programmes in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka.”
- This paper finds that strengthening engagement with civil society in the implementation of government programs results in a more enabling environment for widows to claim services, including land rights. Focus group discussions in India and Nepal showed that widows who were a part of this collaborative effort were more articulate, confident and aware of their rights. This played an important role in helping them claim their entitlements, including land rights. In Sri Lanka, widows have been able to take advantage of government programs for capacity building and skills training due to the partnership between the government and the groups working with widows. In the process, many widows have become agents of change in their community. [Threats to Women’s Land Tenure Security and Effectiveness of Interventions - Annotated Bibliography]

Collection Type:
Research Articles
Country:
Multiple Countries, Sri Lanka, Nepal, India
Creator:
UN Women
Year:
2014