The Forum for Social Studies is an independent, non-profit institution engaged in policy-oriented research on the development challenges facing Ethiopia. Together with the Ethiopian Economic Association and the Agricultural Economics Society of Ethiopia, they organised a conference in 2005 from which the papers are collected in this volume. The main aims were twofold: to keep the debate on the land question alive, and to move the focus and scope of the debate if civil society and the public at large are to benefit from it. The land issue not only bears on a wide range of development and policy problems, but in a predominantly agrarian society such as Ethiopia, land is a critical asset and central to socio-economic development. Civil society is seeking to broaden the debate, which has hitherto been narrowly framed. The papers are organised in three parts: Access to Land and Agrarian Class Differentiation; Land Transaction; Natural Resource Management, Policy, and Economic Return. Eight papers are presented, including the welcome and opening statements and the conference programme. Dessalegn Rahmato won the 1999 Prince Claus Award in recognition of significant achievements in the field of research and development. He is a Senior Research Fellow at the Forum for Social Studies, and was formerly its Executive Director. He has published on land and agrarian issues, food security, environmental policy, and poverty in Wollaita. His current research is on civil society and democratisation.



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Dessalegn Rahmato, Taye Assefa
Forum for Social Studies