Guidance on agreements with investors

Hi all,

The Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment and Namati are currently investigating potential ways to assist and provide guidance to communities affected by land-based investments. Specifically, we are hoping to develop written and other guidance and tools pitched at communities (or their paralegals or advisers) that cover:

  1. How to negotiate better contracts between communities and investors.

  2. How to ensure investors fulfill the terms of agreed investor-community contracts.

  3. Model contractual clauses / guidance for: (1) Terms of engagement for negotiation between communities and investors; and (2) actual community-investor contracts.

  4. Monitoring company obligations contained in contracts entered into between investors and host governments.

We would love to hear from community members and paralegals or advisers supporting communities. Are there tools / guides that you already use? Are there any gaps that you think need filling? If so, what do you think is needed, and what format (written / online / video / in person training / guidance) would be helpful?

Many thanks!

Sam Szoke-Burke

Legal Researcher

Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment

Columbia Law School | The Earth Institute, Columbia University 435 W116th St. New York, NY 10027 | (+1)(212) 854-2635 | (+1)(646) 630-4123 | | | @CCSI_Columbia | @samszokeburke


Community Guidance on Agreements Relating to Agriculture or Forestry Investments

While there are a number of existing resources that can assist communities and their advocates in their interactions with investors over land—from negotiating better agreements with investors, to monitoring whether investors fulfill the terms of their agreements—these resources are not always easy to find. CCSI has created a detailed Google document that lists relevant guides and other documents, provides links to the original documents, and includes brief descriptions of their content. This Google document is available here; it can be viewed online, downloaded, emailed, and printed.

This document was developed in the context of CCSI’s work on Addressing Legal Support Gaps around Land-Based Investment and in the course of a partnership with Namati to develop community-oriented resources to support communities’ interactions with investors.

CCSI will update this document periodically; if you know of additional materials that should be included, please email us at