The Guidance Tool

Assessing Land Tenure

Assessing land tenure governance in the areas where a company operates

The risks posed by weak land and forest tenure governance to companies and communities can be difficult to quickly identify. Fortunately, there is a growing body of research and databases that provide information on land and forest governance in the developing world. While these sources of information can be useful to guide a company’s research, they cannot replace careful, due diligence performed by a company’s staff and the robust consultations required by the VGGT.

World Bank Land Governance Assessment Framework (LGAF) provides detailed assessments of the land sector and the recognition of local tenure rights in more than 30 countries18

Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index can give a company insights into the level of corruption and government accountability in a country as part of your due diligence process. Corruption in the land sector can lead to forced evictions and human rights abuses19

Land Matrix is an online platform monitoring land investments that can help a company mitigate risks and understand global trends in land acquisitions.20

Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI)’s research on forest tenure and community forestry will provide a company with up to date information on the current laws and tenure systems in countries where you might operate.21

18 World Bank LGAF website: EXTERNAL/EXTDEC/EXTRESEARCH/ EXTPROGRAMS/EX-TARDR/ EXTLGA/0,,contentMDK:22793966~ menuPK:9163253~pagePK:64168427~ piPK:64168435~theSitePK: 7630425,00.html

19 Transparency International website:

20 Land Matrix website:

21 Rights and Resources Initiative Forest Tenure Data: resources/tenure-data/