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What is Good Land Use? From Rights to Relationship

29 Pages Posted: 9 Oct 2011 Last revised: 31 Aug 2012

Peter D. Burdon

Adelaide Law School, University of Adelaide

Date Written: 2010


Industrial agriculture is the dominant method for feeding an increasingly urbanised world. However, a growing body of literature suggests that industrial practices are unsustainable and risk global food security. This article examines the legal-philosophical dimension of this literature and the vision of good land use promoted in both industrial and agrarian farming practices. It argues that industrial agriculture is premised on a concept of private property that promotes individual preference satisfaction, separates people from place and fragments landscape. In response, this article examines agrarian farming practices as a means of re-conceiving private property so that it is seen to embrace not only human good, but also ethics and the land itself. By re-conceiving private property as embracing these factors, private property may offer but one solution to the agricultural crisis.

Keywords: Private Property, Agriculture, Agrarian Farming, Bundle of Rights, Relationship, Nature, Environment

Suggested Citation

Burdon, Peter D., What is Good Land Use? From Rights to Relationship (2010). Melbourne Univeristy Law Review, Vol. 34, No. 3, p. 708, 2010; U. of Adelaide Law Research Paper No. 2011-016. Available at SSRN:

Peter D. Burdon (Contact Author)

Adelaide Law School, University of Adelaide ( email )

Ligertwood Building
Adelaide 5005, South Australia SA 5005


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