Women in Nampula, northern Mozambique.
Women in Nampula, northern Mozambique.Photo: Gaborbasch via Shutterstock

Investigating how land-titling and agricultural intensification initiatives affect womens' land rights in Northern Mozambique.

2022 - 2024

Swedish Research Council

  • This project investigates how processes of individual/household land titling and agricultural intensification initiatives affect women’s and land-holding lineages’ land rights. It seeks to understand how land titles affect gendered land-related responsibilities under matrilineal tenure systems.

    While African policy documents highlight women’s land tenure insecurity as a key development problem, land reforms through regularisation are usually based on the implicit assumption is that land tenure is patrilineal.

    When customary land rights are formalised through community delimitations, in spite of non-discriminatory intentions, there is a tendency to formalisation bringing about a strengthening of male roles and authorities, in both patrilineal and matrilineal communities.

    So far, there are no systematic research findings reported in the scholarly literature on this particular topic.

  • The project carries out field-based studies in communities where traditional tenure arrangements have been matrilineal. The research is conducted in the context of a community-based land tenure reform in Nampula Province in Northern Mozambique.

    The four main issues that are addressed are:

    • titling processes and women’s roles
    • land rights and gendered responsibilities
    • access to and control of land
    • agricultural intensification and subsistence

    The research approach is qualitative, based on a comparative case study of three delimited communities. 

  • Project Leader
  • Land reform and agricultural development
  • Gendered access to and control over livelihood resources
  • Women's land rights
  • Gender relations and food production
  • Natural resource conflicts