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Research Report

Land-use planning in the Moluccas: What of customary tenure security?

Louis Durey
Esther Mwangi
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2014
Pages: 28
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 1-2)

    Governments use spatial planning as a public policy tool, in a “statutory system for regulating development and the use of land” (Jay 2010, 494). In practice, a spatial plan serves as a reference for development planning and infrastructure policy and for planning land uses. The value of spatial planning is that it enables governments to record the different land uses in an area, such as forest, industry or agriculture. Although much research has examined planning in developed countries, the connection between spatial planning and customary land tenure in developing countries is an emerging empirical field that merits greater research attention...

  2. (pp. 3-4)

    In this study, we use the concepts developed by Young et al. (2008) on environmental governance and institutional interplay. We investigate the role of different actors in different institutions, where ‘institution’ is defined as “a cluster of rights, rules, and decision making procedures that give rise to social practices, assign roles to participants in these practices, and guide interactions among the occupants of key roles” (Young et al. 2008, XXII).

    Institutions react to each other in an environment, shaping the institutional interplay, which in turn influences the way spatial planning is conducted and the outcomes for local tenure security:


  3. (pp. 5-11)

    The literature reveals several contradictory elements in Indonesia’s legal frameworks for spatial planning and forestry planning as a result of forest estate delineation in the 1980s. At the time, forest boundaries were set based on desk studies, and the materials available at that time were considerably less sophisticated than the remote-sensing technology in use now (Contreras-Hermosilla and Fay 2005). Consequently, much of the land designated as the forest was not actually forested, with much of it under other uses, such as community settlements. To resolve that problem, in 1997, the central government launched a process known as Paduserasi, to achieve...

  4. (pp. 12-13)

    Our results suggest that spatial planning in Maluku is imperfectly conducted and has little effect on how land is actually used. We presented several examples indicating that Indonesia rarely enforces spatial plans, at least in the Outer Islands. Our findings echo those of other studies in Indonesia that reveal evidence of the ineffectiveness of spatial plans at regional and local levels (Wollenberg et al. 2006). This analysis also suggests that spatial plans remain only a minor component of larger land-use planning policies, and whether or not actors adhere to spatial plans is affected by the conflicting interests between stakeholders, which...

  5. (pp. 14-14)

    In this study, we shed light on the linkages between ambiguities and contradictions in land-use planning laws, institutional bottlenecks in spatial planning and the outcomes of current processes for customary tenure security, in the context of a developing country. To do this, we analyzed legal frameworks and the literature and then conducted interviews with government officials at different administrative levels involved in spatial planning in Maluku in Indonesia.

    The results show that the broader political configuration is a major determinant of the quality of institutional coordination across levels and sectors for achieving spatial planning objectives. This political context includes tensions...