Case Studies

A project on shared land use (rights) and governance of the Commons


The IWT-supported research project INDIGO is an inter- and transdisciplinary project, which puts the discussion about shared land uses, land property and use rights within the interdisciplinary context of ownership regimes and the ‘governance of the Commons. INDIGO’s partners examine jointly contemporary concepts of land use, ownership and the Commons and ways to govern them. Concurrently they take the history of the Commons, in Flanders and abroad, and their use and administration into consideration as background explanatory information. INDIGO analyses different ownership regimes, the contextualised legal dimensions of property and use rights and their implications for spatial development planning practices and modes of governance.

The project explores the use of differentiated ownership and governance modes in Flanders in two ways: a conceptual one and an evidence-based, practical way. Its purpose is to go beyond the current predominant dichotomy between private and public ownership and adsvance innovative and more articulated institutional forms. In this perspective, the project has far-sighted and multi-scalar ambitions for socially constructed strategies fitting more inter-active and imaginative planning approaches. If achieved, these new planning approaches, taking into account more variegated ownership regimes, could provide more appropriate instruments to respond to socio-economic crisis and ecological insecurities, and as such, to pursue sustainable development strategies.

Briefly, the project aims to explore how spatial development (planning) can be improved to address contemporary and future challenges for socially and ecologically sustainable spatial organisation and development, by