Blog

Transparency and Community Empowerment around Land Investments in Cameroon

By Kelly D. Ward
January 29, 2018

Samuel Nguiffo, founder of Cameroon’s Centre for Environment and Development, explains how he uses OpenLandContracts.org, a unique tool created by the Columbia Center for Sustainable Investment.

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Justine Sylvester on Land Contract Transparency and OpenLandContracts.org

January 23, 2018

In this blog post, CCSI speaks with Justine Sylvester, an advisor to the Land and Livelihoods Program and Private Sector Engagement at Village Focus International and alum of the CCSI’s Executive Training on Sustainable Investments in Agriculture program. Justine explains how OpenLandContracts.org has influenced her work and how it can be used to “level the playing field” between investors, governments, and communities.

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New York City Joins Growing Chorus on Divestment

By Nathan Lobel
January 16, 2018

In the face of ever-greater urgency to act on climate, and few prospects for action at the federal level, Mayor Bill de Blasio built upon New York City’s already impressive record on climate with a big announcement last week: first, New York City would divest its $189 billion pension funds from fossil fuel companies. And second, the city would sue five oil majors—BP, Chevron, Conoco Phillips, Exxon, and Royal Dutch Shell—for their contributions to climate change and efforts to cover up scientific evidence of its reality. These are important steps in the transition away from fossil fuels toward a clean energy future. Institutions should use all available tools—including investment funds and the courts—to press for a just and sustainable future.

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Experts Examine Costs and Benefits of Investment Incentives

By Nathan Lobel
January 10, 2018

Governments continue to use incentives to attract and hold corporate investment. In Rethinking Investment Incentives: Trends and Policy Options edited by Ana Teresa Tavares-Lehmann, Perrine Toledano, Lise Johnson, and Lisa Sachs (Columbia University Press, July 2016), several distinguished experts question some of the core assumptions that lead to these deals. In doing so, they identify key issues for policymakers and propose best practices to help governments get the most bang for their buck.

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Investor-State Dispute Settlement: What Are We Trying to Achieve? Does ISDS Get us There?

By Lise Johnson, Brooke Skartvedt Güven, and Jesse Coleman
December 11, 2017

In this blog post, the first part of a two-part series, Lise Johnson, Brooke Skartvedt Güven, and Jesse Coleman raise questions regarding the effectiveness of investor-state dispute settlement in achieving its stated objectives.

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CCSI at the 44th Plenary Session of the Committee on World Food Security

By Sarah Cruz
December 4, 2017

In this blog post, Sarah Cruz summarizes the highlights from CCSI’s participation in the 44th Plenary Session of the Committee on World Food Security.

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Michael Jarvis Interview on OpenLandContracts.org

November 21, 2017

In this video, Michael Jarvis, Executive Director of the Transparency and Accountability Initiative, speaks about OpenLandContracts.org, and what changes in resource contract transparency mean for stakeholders seeking to improve governance and accountability around investments.

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Is There a Human Right to Land?

By Kaitlin Cordes
November 8, 2017

In this blog post, Kaitlin Cordes considers whether and how international human rights law recognizes a human right to land, and the ways in which land rights are inextricably linked to human rights.

3 Uses for OpenLandContracts.org

By Kaitlin Cordes
October 17, 2017

Kaitlin Cordes shares some of the ways she uses OpenLandContracts.org, a repository of investor-state contracts.

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Reflecting on OpenLandContracts.org’s First Two Years

By Kaitlin Cordes
October 3, 2017

Two years ago, CCSI announced OpenLandContracts.org, the world’s first global repository of publicly available investor-state contracts for land, agriculture, and forestry projects. In this blog post, Kaitlin Cordes reflects on the progress CCSI is made and further goals for the future.

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