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To Fight Climate Change and Achieve Policy Objectives, Think Politics First and Often

By Nathan Lobel
February 26, 2019

What the Green New Deal gets that the carbon tax misses: embedded in political realities, the seemingly first-best option can become at best insufficient to achieve its original policy objectives, and at worst a costly distraction from other more viable alternatives.

Opening Up Sugar Contracts in Southeast Asia: An Interview with Golda Benjamin

By Ayesha Audu
December 18, 2018

A recent project by the Business & Human Rights Resource Center shows how OpenLandContracts.org can be used to strengthen advocacy around corporate accountability and good governance of natural resources.

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Investor-State Arbitration: An Opportunity for Real Reform?

By Lorenzo Cotula, Brooke Guven, Lise Johnson and Thierry Berger
December 7, 2018

An ongoing multilateral process could provide a unique opportunity to reform a contentious area of global economic governance – but only if it properly identifies the key problems.

Marcela Chaves Alumni Profile

December 8, 2018

In this alumni profile, Marcela Chaves, Advisor to the Land and Sustainable Livelihoods Program at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and a 2018 Executive Training alumnus, highlights the importance of meaningfully engaging with all stakeholders to promote responsible investments in agriculture and improved livelihoods for rural communities.

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Marian Amissah-Ocran Harrison Alumni Profile

In this alumni profile we feature Marian Amissah-Ocran Harrison, a Women’s Empowerment Programme Coordinator at the Initiative for Gender Equality and Development in Africa (IGED-Africa) and an alumnus of the 2017 CCSI Executive Training on Sustainable Investment in Agriculture. Marian discusses her legal, policy, and advocacy work on women’s economic empowerment and land rights, including her advocacy for the ground-breaking Resolution on Women’s Rights to Land and Other Productive Resources.

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Global Perspectives on a Global Pact for the Environment

Edited by Michael Burger, Teresa Parejo, and Lisa Sachs
September 19, 2018

As the UNGA convenes this week, we are bringing together independent thought leaders and legal scholars from around the world to weigh in on what, if anything, the process initiated by UNGA Resolution 72/277 might usefully accomplish; and what the United Nations agencies, national governments and civil society stakeholders engaged in the process could usefully consider. Together, these perspectives identify a number of existing issues that merit attention and, if heeded, might inform negotiations on the future of international environmental governance.

Why Politics Matter for Technical Assistance, in Guyana and Beyond

By Michael Jarvis
September 19, 2018

With the announcement of yet more oil, Guyana is back in the news. While much ink has been spilled on what Guyana will do with its newfound riches, not much is being written about the role of donors and advisers in this context. To maximize impact of technical recommendations, these development practitioners must navigate the thorny task of integrating political considerations into technical recommendations.

Forging a Path Forward on International Investment Governance: Columbia International Investment Conference

By Nathan Lobel
September 19, 2018

The world has entered a critical moment for international investment governance. To seize upon this moment, the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment is hosting a two-day conference on Rethinking International Investment Governance: Principles for the 21st Century. The conference seeks to elaborate principles for a progressive investment agenda.

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New Guides Help Communities Avoid Exploitative Contracts

By Sam Szoke-Burke
September 10, 2018

Would you sign a lease that gave your landlord “sole discretion” in deciding on how any disputes you have with them would be resolved? Would you spend months or years negotiating a contract only to have it include a clause saying it is not legally enforceable? These are the sorts of alarming features that we have seen in agreements between communities and investors seeking to community lands and resources. They were also one factor behind CCSI’s and Namati’s decision to develop new guides to help communities understand their rights and avoid exploitative agreements.

Here’s How Cameroon Can Achieve Land Contract Transparency

By Téodyl Nkuintchua, Sam Szoke-Burke, and Horline Njike
August 29, 2018

Cameroon’s new code on transparency and good governance promises to remove the shroud of secrecy that has hovered over contracts the government has signed with natural resource investors. It should also require the publication of investor-state contracts for agriculture and forestry projects. Everything appears to be lined up for Cameroon to advance on land contract transparency; here’s how the government can fulfill this promise.