Backgrounder: Gender inequalities in land rights in Africa

| August 16, 2021

Download this story

In keeping with this edition’s Farmer story from Kenya, our Script of the week is a backgrounder on gender inequalities in land rights in Africa. 

Land is a key economic and livelihood resource for women in Africa. Most women rely on land for their livelihoods and are responsible for much of the agricultural production. But many women are either landless or have limited and insecure rights to land. The important role that rural women play in agriculture means that insecure land rights threaten their well-being and that of their children and their communities.

Improving women’s access to land is one way of increasing gender equality and addressing other important development goals. So far, efforts to improve women’s access to land have focused on agricultural land. This focus needs to be broadened to include access to other resources linked to land such as forests, water, minerals, and urban space.

After an introduction, the backgrounder contains the following sections: 

  • Customary tenure and women’s right to land
  • What are the implications of insecure land rights for women?
  • Challenges to gender equality in land ownership
  • Positive efforts that support secure land rights for women