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Date of Award

Spring 2013

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


International Studies

First Advisor

Professor Brigitte Schulz

Second Advisor

Professor Janet Bauer

Third Advisor

Professor Zayde Antrim


The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of large-scale land acquisitions (LSLAs) in Ethiopia and Ghana on the realization of the countries’ development goals. More specifically, it will look at the impact of LSLAs on the prevalence of hunger in terms of income and access to food. Previous researchers have examined large-scale land acquisitions in terms of validity (in terms of property rights/land tenure), political and cultural impact, and the livelihood of those removed from the land. They lack, however, analysis in the context of specific development goals. This paper aimed to fill this gap by examining the impacts of LSLAs in light of development policy frameworks put forth by the governments of Ethiopia and Ghana. More specifically, it sought to discuss their effects on food security, in terms of income (as a method to acquire food) and access to food, for the portions of the agriculture-dependent populations residing in rural areas, despite difficulties in linking the two variables, hunger and large-scale land acquisitions, due to the multitude of factors affecting (i.e. employment, investment climate, etc.) each.

While initial analysis might suggest that large-scale land acquisitions have a positive impact on development frameworks in Ethiopia and Ghana, this paper determines the results to be inconclusive. Information on LSLAs is limited in availability and reliability. To move forward with the analysis, further data must be provided. Additionally, future research might take into account the political intricacies of each country and provide a more economic-based analysis of policy impacts.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in International Studies. Full text access is limited to the campus only.