Whether land transactions can benefit the local population depends on the governance system, the so-called rules of the game and their enforcement. As investors often face a weak institutional environment in target countries, outcomes for the local population frequently seem to be arbitrary and vary. This study draws on past and recent experiences in the Ghanaian oil palm sector. Based on qualitative and quantitative field research conducted in 2010/2011, the effects of a land-based, large-scale investment on people who received compensation, on neighbouring communities, on permanent and casual workers, as well as on contract farmers are analysed against a conceptual framework for land acquisitions inspired by the thoughts of Elinor Ostrom and Oliver Williamson. This leads to the main finding that outcomes are predominantly mixed and vary from very negative to positive for different population groups.
Väth, S.J. LDPI Working Paper 24. Gaining neighbours or big losers - what happened when large-scale, land-based investment in the Ghanaian oil palm sector met the local population on the ground? The Land Deal Politics Initiative, (2013) 31 pp.