By Julia Day, STEPS Centre Communications Manager

Across the world, especially in the global South, there has been a dramatic rise in ‘land grabs’ – cross-border, transnational corporation-driven and, in some cases foreign government-driven, large-scale land deals.

In-depth and systematic enquiry in to this issue has become a matter of urgency, and to that end, the Land Deal Politics Initiative (LDPI) sponsored a successful a small grant competition last year. Now applications are invited for the second year of small grants.

Grants of up to US$3,000 per study are available to successful applicants who wish to undertake original field research, carry out follow up fieldwork on an ongoing related initiative, or write up a paper based on research that is being/has been undertaken. LDPI is particularly keen on themes around resistance and alternatives but is open to broader topics.

In 2010 LDPI were able to fund 40 small grants. Many of the papers were among the 120 presented at the LDPI-organized International Conference on Global Land Grabbing held at the Institute of Development Studies in April this year.

Some of the small grant-funded papers contributed to policy initiatives including the UN Committee on Food Security (CFS) related studies and deliberations.

Additionally, many of the papers were selected as contributions to three forthcoming journal special issues on land grabs:


>Green Grabs: a new way of appropriating nature?’ guest edited by James Fairhead, Melissa Leach and Ian Scoones, Journal of Peasant Studies (JPS), due March 2012

>The politics of global land grabbing’ guest edited by Ruth Hall, Ben White and Wendy Wolford, Journal of Peasant Studies (JPS), due May 2012

>Governing land grabs’, guest edited by Jun Borras, Ruth Hall, Ian Scoones, Ben White and Wendy Wolford, Development and Change, due July 2012

The LDPI Small Grants Competition Part 2: 2011-12 is now open. Short proposals (500 words maximum) for the research/paper must be submitted by email to [email protected] by
15 December 2011, together with a short CV (maximum one page, including the name of one referee) and small grants will be awarded in January 2012.

For a full explanation of what is required of applicants, please see this PDF document.