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Connected and changing: An open data web platform to track land conflict in Myanmar

Conflict over land is a key concern in Myanmar. Land governance bears the mark of past injustices, and as the country opens up to new investments in its farmland and natural resources, changes are putting the livelihoods and land of smallholder farmers at risk.

Open Data Myanmar (ODM) is a web-based database providing information on land disputes from across the country. Focusing on conflicts between individuals and companies or government actors, its aim is to present accurate credible data in a way that can be used by civil society, Members of Parliament and policy makers in the development of new policies and laws. Through a pool of pro bono lawyers, ODM also provides legal literacy training and legal advice and representation to the affected communities.

This report presents the establishment of ODM, set against the recent political changes that took place in the country. It outlines the key features and activities that form the first stage of the ODM project, reviews the successes achieved and the obstacles encountered so far, including the challenges of developing a web-based platform in a country with limited telecommunications infrastructure. Finally, it shares lessons for future development and tips for successful replication elsewhere.

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Knapman, C. and Wai Wai, L. (2016) Connected and changing: An open data web platform to track land conflict in Myanmar. IIED, London.
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Around the world, citizens' groups are taking action to change the way investments in natural resources are happening, to protect the rights of citizens and the environment for a fairer and more sustainable world. The Legal Tools for Citizen Empowerment initiative shares tools and tactics among practitioners.

More at www.iied.org:
Legal tools for citizen empowerment: sharing lessons from innovation