Responsible investments in agriculture and land are vital to supporting resilient communities and food systems as well as promoting rather than hindering human rights and land rights. The many and often overlapping stages and various stakeholders involved in seeing an investment through from the beginning to the end leaves ample room for challenges as well as opportunities to optimize the benefits of proposed investments and avoid harms. While international voluntary guidelines and guiding principles exist, no two countries address each of the investment stages in exactly the same way. Experience-sharing and cooperation around strong––as well as weak––practices can support an enabling environment for responsible investments for all countries.
Together with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), CCSI co-organized a virtual forum from October 7 to December 2, 2020 to promote inter-country dialogue on practices regarding responsible agricultural investments. This 9-week long series brought together government representatives from six countries (Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Uganda) to facilitate peer-to-peer learning around existing practices and challenges with regard to specific phases of investment approval processes for land investments. The live sessions also included short presentations from FAO and CCSI staff, as well as civil society and private sector representatives.
Prior to the virtual forum, participants completed an online e-learning program on key topics relevant to responsible land investments.