Lorenzo Cotula casts a critical eye over the most reliable available evidence on this hotly contested topic, examining the implications of land deals in Africa both for its people, and for world agriculture and food security in a shrinking planet.
Lorenzo Cotula is a senior researcher at the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), a policy research institute based in the UK. Lorenzo leads IIED's Land Rights Team, undertakes research and policy advocacy on land rights and on investment in agriculture and extractive industries, and coordinates a multi-country programme to strengthen local capacity to get a better deal from natural resource investment. Before joining IIED in 2002, Lorenzo worked on assignments with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN and with two Italian NGOs. He holds a Law Degree (cum laude) from the University 'La Sapienza' of Rome, an MSc in Development Studies (Distinction) from the London School of Economics, and a PhD from the University of Edinburgh.