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Politecnico di Milano (2016)

A possible alternative to land grabbing through territorial planning. The case of Senegal : a new scenario for the Senegal river valley

BARCHIESI, VALERIA

Titre : A possible alternative to land grabbing through territorial planning. The case of Senegal : a new scenario for the Senegal river valley

Auteur : BARCHIESI, VALERIA

Université de soutenance : Politecnico di Milano

Grade : Laurea Magistrale 2016

Résumé
Land grabbing, accaparramento di terre e risorse naturali, land rush, land acquisitions, land deals, large scale land investments : many terms and explanations have been used to define a complex phenomenon characterized by multiple aspects which are intertwines to different scales of analysis. The research is aimed initially to analyse different interpretations, ideological and interpretive views, which are expressed in the definitions. Moreover, the factors that have led to the emergence of the phenomenon are highlighted and deeply described. The issue is addressed from a territorial point of view, trying to understand which contribution a planner can give to the international debate about land grabbing. Several researches faced the issue in juridical and legislative terms, many environmentalists raised their doubts about this dangerous trend and a relatively extensive bibliography can be found about the numbers and the characteristics of these land deals. But, according with a planner’s way of looking at issues, this research tries to translate in spatial terms the data collected and the importance of the phenomenon, making a continuous comparison with other territories. The objective of the first part is to quantify qualitatively the phenomenon, to facilitate the understanding and to emphasize the entity. The second part focuses on the analysis of the obstacles that these large land acquisitions pose to the development of potentially rich territories. The concepts of quality, efficiency and territorial identity are studied as the basis of the concept of sustainability in its territorial dimension. It is then supported the necessity of an alternative model of development in opposition to the one we are used to : an alternative which has a more ambitious goal than foreign investments directed to exportation. The third and fourth parts are focused on the analysis of an area particularly affected by the phenomenon in the north of Senegal. The analysis is made with a methodology which is in view of possible future not-transparent investments and with the aim to develop a planning proposal for an alternative. With the analysis of best practices and experiences that are going in this direction it is constructed a theoretical and practical support to the objective of the research. Finally, an alternative scenario is proposed for the analysed area, with actions and planning suggestions, which does not claim to be exhaustive or to solve such a complex issue, but tries to look at it differently and to state the necessity of a different model of development.

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