WFAL Workshops on land and natural resource access

at the World Social Forum 2015, Tunis

A wide variety of farmer and civil society organizations, researchers, and individuals from all over the world have begun a process of debate dedicated to land and natural ressources access related issues. The goal of this processus – a series of debates (and an opportunity to share firsthand experiences and case-studies) that will unfold over the coming year – is to draw attention to the very serious issue of farmer eviction, and to strengthen farmers’ ongoing fight for access to land, water, and natural resources. It is called the World Forum for Access to Land (WFAL).

These organizations and individuals are working together to organize the World Meeting, which will take place in 2016, and all of the events leading up to it.

The WFAL intend to offer a space to continue some of the discussions that began during the International Year of Family Farming (cf. the Brasilia and Lyon Manifestos). It is linked with the processus engaged toward the implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests (Committee on World Food Security, 2012).

AGTER and CERAI are in charge of the WFAL permanent secretariat, and represent the organizations and individuals who have signed the call to organize the WFAL (see, list and signatures). They will be moderating two workshops at the 2015 World Social Forum:

WFAL Workshop – 1. Land and natural resource grabbing: state of the situation

Thursday, 26th of March, 3 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (reading room SLB)

  • What kinds of land and natural resource grabbing exist today, and what is the true extent of the phenomenon?
  • What broad causes can we identify? (financial and economic interests, major policy trends…)
  • How do land and natural resource grabbing impact society? (Cultural, environmental, economic impacts / impact on human rights / impact on peace)
  • How are communities resisting land grabbing? What is the state of current movements against it?
  • What is the scope of existing institutional reponses to address land and natural resource grabbing?

WFAL Workshop – 2. Land and natural resource grabbing: reverse the situation !

Saturday, 28th of March, 8:30 a.m.  – 11 a.m. (room SP16)

  • What solutions?
  • What actions should be taken to get these solutions implemented? What strength and what alliances should be developed?

The following individuals will introduce the workshops:

Samir Amin (Third World Forum, Egypt)

Ibrahima Coulibaly (CNOP, Mali)

Vicent Garces (president of the WFAL International Organizing Committee)

Olivier de Schutter (former Rapporteur Special of the United Nations on the Right to Food 2004-2008)

Francois Houtart (Indigenous Peoples Foundation of Ecuador)

Marcel Mazoyer (AgroParisTech and Universite Paris Sud, France

The WFAL workshops will give World Social Forum participants the opportunity to share their experiences, observations, and proposals with the organizations and individuals involved in the organization of the WFAL. The WFAL organization process will last from now until the beginning of 2016, when the international forum takes place. With the approval of World Social Forum participants, their contributions will be included in reports that will be shared with WFAL participants and with the public through various means (, websites of organizations and individuals who have signed the call to organize the WFAL 2016, electronic and paper newsletters or reports, etc.)

The World Social Forum in Tunis provides an essential space for the development of alternatives. It is an essential step for the WFAL to develop the farmer and other civil society organizations work together. The analysis and proposals that they share during the workshops will be notably directly confronted to the ones of governmental institutions representatives during events that will follow the Tunis Conference.