Annual report 2002
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The year 2002 was an extremely busy one for PLAAS staff, and saw the initiation of many new projects and activities, some of them qualitatively different to anything undertaken before. These included an in-depth, national review of the land reform programme, and the release of several media briefings that summarise research findings on poverty in the Western Cape. Others were the co-hosting of a continent-wide networking programme on land and resource rights, and lobbying and advocacy in relation to a proposed new law, the Communal Land Rights Bill. These indicate that PLAAS is only just beginning to realise its potential to combine rigorous academic research, effective communication of research findings, highly-focused policy advocacy, and effective networking in support of African research and policy advocacy. Research highlights of the year include the initiation of a project to evaluate national land and agrarian reform policies and their impacts since 1994. Ruth Hall and Dr Peter Jacobs were recruited to undertake this research and made impressive progress in relation to this ambitious and challenging task. Other important new projects that began in 2002 included Dr Thembela Kepe’s research on HIV/AIDS and land-based livelihoods, and the multi-disciplinary and international KNOWFISH project on the informational needs and institutional structures for effective fisheries co-management, co-ordinated by Dr Mafa Hara.