Itayosara Rojas is currently a PhD Researcher at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), Erasmus University Rotterdam. She works in the research project “Commodity & Land Rushes and Regimes: Reshaping Five Spheres of Global Social Life (RRUSHES-5)” led by Professor Jun Borras and sponsored by the European Research Council. Her research interests focus on agrarian dynamics, socio-environmental conflicts, land-use transformations in the Colombian agricultural frontier and its links with the development of illegal economies such as coca leaf production and processing. Itayosara has worked closely with the peasant movement in Colombia, accompanying training and advocacy processes at different levels.
Understanding Changes and Transformations of the Global Land and Commodities Rush: A Historical and Integrative Framework
The global land and commodities rush has led to structural, institutional and political transformations, whilst also (re)shaping the politics of climate change, labour and state-citizen dynamics. A large body of scholarly work has focused on land grabbing and the impacts of corporate land deals on the politics of climate and labour, as well as on state-citizenship dynamics. However, these analyses have been conducted as separate, individual case studies. This paper presents an integrative approach towards understanding how structural, institutional and political shifts and the changes in the spheres of climate change, labour, and state and citizenship, are intertwined in the contemporary land and commodities rush. Colombia and more specifically the Amazon-Orinoco corridor correspond to a hotspot of the global land rush, where the global demand for land is integrated with: climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts, the increase in food production to meet the world’s growing population needs, and global accumulation patterns. This conjuncture makes land politics, climate change and labour regimes inseparable as a subject of and context for exploring the impacts of the land rush in Colombian society. The societal change sparked by the land rush has been contested within and between the state and society, bringing the question of citizenship and democratization as part of the analysis. From a historical perspective and through conjunctural analysis, this paper purposes an analytical framework to examine the interwovenness of three spheres of global social life an d the transformations of the global land rush in specific settings.
Affiliation: International Institute of Social Studies, Netherlands