The Legal Tools newsletter is sent quarterly with updates on Legal Tools for Citizen Empowerment, a collaborative initiative to strengthen local rights and voices in natural resources investments.
The latest issue explores the costs and benefits of international investment treaties and the role of private investment in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. We highlight a new report by IIED and the Beijing-based Global Environmental Institute, 'China-Africa investment treaties: do they work?', which provides a cautionary tale as to whether such treaties do indeed promote investment, casting doubt on the benefits of investment treaties.
We also share a newly published briefing, 'Rethinking investment treaties to advance human rights', which shows that human rights issues have been at stake in many arbitrations worldwide. This briefing is intended to support parliamentary scrutiny of treaty making as part of a project with the Trade Justice Movement and Traidcraft.
Further discussion about international treaties and land rights can be seen in a book chapter by IIED principal researcher Lorenzo Cotula, who also takes part in a Q&A. A further new briefing by Cotula discusses the possible impacts of the European Union referendum on foreign investment treaties.
A recent IIED webinar examined how community by-laws can help secure customary land rights to build community unity, improve local land governance, and strengthen claims to traditional lands. Speakers from Namati and the Ogiek’s People Development Program talked about their different approaches.
Vacancy: the legal tools team is looking for a French-speaking senior researcher. The closing date for applications is Monday, 6 February.
The most recent IIED legal tools papers and bulletins can be found to read and download:
- China-Africa investment treaties: do they work?
- Beyond trade deals: charting a post-Brexit course for UK investment treaties
- Legacy land issues: addressing historical disputes in agribusiness investments
- Rethinking investment treaties to advance human rights , Lorenzo Cotula
- 'Land grabbing' and international investment law: toward a global reconfiguration of property?
We also feature 'Lessons from the field':
- Pillars of the community: how trained volunteers defend land rights in Tanzania
- Connected and changing: an open data web platform to track land conflict in Myanmar
- Strengthening women's voices in the context of agricultural investments: lessons from Tanzania
- Strengthening women's voices in the context of agricultural investments: lessons from Kenya
- Genre et foncier : l'expérience des consultations juridiques gratuites au Sénégal [in French only]
- Mainstreaming gender in Tanzania's local land governance
Our newsletter is a great way to keep up with the latest news from IIED, the current work being undertaken by our researchers and our most recent publications. To get your copy, subscribe here.
The legal tools newsletter is one of six email bulletins we issue to subscribers on a regular basis, including a main IIED one that offers a cross-section of all of our work every month. Sign up here.
More on forests
Are you interested in forests? The IIED forests newsletter provides updates on our work to improve forest livelihoods and ensure forests are managed in a fair and sustainable way. Sign up here.
More on urban
The urban newsletter is produced every two months by IIED's Human Settlements research group and focuses on inclusive urbanisation and reducing urban risk. Sign up here.