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Long-awaited land reform research finally published

On 29 July the Scottish Government finally published the research it commissioned to inform the recent Land Reform Act. This work included four projects:

1.      The impact of diversity of ownership scale on social, economic and environmental outcomes

This work explored the degree to which large scale landownership contributed to sustainable community development in comparison with a greater diversity of ownership. This research found that: “Land ownership scale is one of a myriad of factors that influence the economic, social and environmental development of rural communities. The complexity of ownership motivations, societal, policy and economic interactions in driving community development means that it is too simplistic to conclude that scale of land ownership is a significant factor in the sustainable development of communities.” See: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/07/1094

 

2.      Engaging and Empowering Communities and Stakeholders in rural land use and land management in Scotland.

This report is aimed at public bodies and other organisations that hold responsibility and power around land use and land management for the benefit of society (like SNH, FCS and SEPA, local authorities and large wildlife charities), and partnership projects, which may also include businesses. It looks at the nature of engagement and the degree of empowerment in the way decisions are made around land use and land management in rural Scotland. It investigates what is already working well and provides recommendations for action so that the organisation above might improve the level of engagement and degree of community empowerment relating to the land they manage. See: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/07/9223

 

3.      Evaluation of the Scottish Land Fund 2012-16

This report presents the findings of an evaluation of the Scottish Land Fund (SLF) 2012-16, which took place between January and April 2016. The evaluation found a very high degree of satisfaction with the design of the fund from all stakeholder groups; that the impact of community ownership on sustainable development was found to be positive; and that urban applications in future are likely to be high value and increase demand on the SLF considerably in the long-term. See: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/07/1628

 

4.      Good practice in overcoming barriers to community land-based activities

This work follows on from the 2015 report that explored the barriers to community land-based activities by focusing on ways in which such barriers can be overcome. A number of types of ‘resolution strategies’ are described along with the factors for success in overcoming barriers, a review of the challenges facing landowners, and perceived principles of ‘good practice’ by both landowners and communities. See: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/07/7298

 

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