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puce Editorial. June 22d, 2010
AGTER’s Newsletter
Vicent Garces

The association AGTER runs an international network of people, exchanging and thinking together how to improve the governance of land, water and natural resources. The network selects and makes information available but it also formulates suggestions and alternatives to face the current great challenges. A quaterly newsletter presents the latest information available on our website : www.agter.asso.fr. Each newsletter is introduced with an editorial written by a member of AGTER’s network.

One of AGTER’s objective is the production of comprehensive and good quality information in order to contribute to the conception of alternative modes of management of land, water and natural resources. This newsletter gives an idea of this work.

Marta Fraticelli realized a rigorous and deep analysis of the agrarian reform that took place in Italy from the middle of the 20th century and its modernizing effects on agriculture policies of the country. It is clear that these policies have affected Mediterranean countries of Europe and East of Europe but also Africa, Asia and Latin America. This work brings many elements to be considered for the land policies of this bustling 21st century.

Marta Fraticelli presents us, among other articles, an excellent Chronicle about the World People’s Conference on Climatic Change, that took place recently in Cochabamba-Bolivia with the hope that it will be an alternative to the United Nations Conference of Copenhagen-December 2009.

Bolivia is engaged in a process of change that modified all the organizations of the country. In the Andean countries, main political, social and economic changes are interacting, building one of the most fascinating transformation of Latin America in the beginning of this century. The property, use and management of land and other natural resources is fully questioned. In this context, debate about collective and individual land rights presented by Gonzalo Colque, Director of Fundación TIERRA in Bolivia, is fully topical.

In this newsletter, we introduce the content of a Conference held by Professor Hubert Cochet, President of AGTER, in Addis Ababa on Ethiopian agriculture. This article reports the decisive weight of agriculture in the Ethiopian economy and the clear link between poverty and vulnerability to climate risks. In another article, Professor Cochet describes the agrarian reform in Mexico and analyzes 77 years (1915-1992) of State intervention on land issues.

Michel Merlet studies the fight between “via campesina” and “via Junquer” in Nicaragua, 19th century. The story of virgin inland, communal land and land owned by indigenous communities transformed into private and enclosed property remind us the current issue of massive landgrab.

This could have been paradoxical but the work of Gwenaëlle Mertz about complex thought of classical economists : Stuart Mill, Leon Walras and Henry George on land, private property and its limits is particularly useful for the passionate debate of the 21st century.

Finally, you will find some translations of articles about the categories of good, access rights and management of fish resources, territory and governance in the 21st century, evolution of the forest in the State of Amazonas-Brazil and a video about land management in France.

We wish to remind you that AGTER wants to contribute to the conception of alternative modes of land and natural resources management, relevant to take up the 21st century challenges. In this sense, we promote a on-going process of collective reflection and learning, whose goal is to support members of civil society organizations and other actors in being informed, building and implementing new models.


Professor in Polytechnic University of Valencia-Spain

Member of Board of directors of AGTER

The French, Spanish, and English articles and videos that we present here differ.

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