Event Reports

Panel discussion on women’s land rights at the United Nations headquarters in New York

by Stefanie Braun

One World - No Hunger:Strengthening Women's Land Ownership and Land Use Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa

What are the main challenges that women are facing regarding their land rights? How can governments ensure that legal and policy reforms strengthen land rights of women in rural areas? And how can gender-transformative approaches contribute to tackle underlying norms and traditions?

To discuss these issues, Stefanie Braun, Project Manager of the special initiative “One World – No Hunger: Strengthening Women’s Land Use and Land Ownership Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa”, was invited as a speaker to a panel discussion on the topic “Transformative approaches to achieve women’s tenure security at scale: the relation between equal land rights and women’s empowerment in rural Africa” at the UN headquarters in New York.

The panel discussion took place on 13 March as a joint EU-Germany-Finland side event at the Commission on the Status of Women 2018, CSW 62. During the discussion, Stefanie Braun and four other panellists from different countries and organisations presented their perspectives on the topic, followed by input and questions from the audience.

In her presentation, Braun emphasized the key role that education plays for improving women’s land rights. Starting with discussions on culture and traditional customs in relation to statutory law, KAS Namibia is trying to make people aware of their rights and change their mindset through workshops, radio programmes and other educational material. She pointed out that even though the focus lies on strengthening women’s land rights, both men and women must be made equally aware of their rights for the project to be successful.