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PhD Scholarship in the field of land use research

Subject: Call for PhD scholarship

The Center for international development and environmental research (ZEU) at the University of Giessen, Germany and the Kazakh Scientific Research Institute of Ecology and Climate, Almaty, are offering a PhD Scholarship in the field of land use research in Central Asia

Background
The LUCA postgraduate programme is going to support the education of young scientists from Central Asia and to create a network of research on land use effects in the region. Ten multidisciplinary working groups of scientists from Germany and Central Asia address land use aspects specific to Central Asian landscapes, their implications for ecosystem services as well as for development and human welfare.  In each working group, one PhD student will focus his/her research on a concrete topic defined below. The PhD student will participate in a sandwich programme of 3 years: his/her research will mainly take place at the home institution in Central Asia (approx. 8 months per year); methodological training will be obtained during study stays at the German institute (approx. 4 months per year). For this 3-years-programme period the PhD student will be supported through a scholarship of the German Volkswagen-Foundation.

Content of the PhD study
In the frame of the LUCA programme the PhD student is asked to work on the following research topic: “Property rights and land tenure in Central Asia”
Objectives:
Given the importance of land tenure and property rights for sustainable land use, the PhD project aims at evaluating land tenure and property rights reforms in Central Asia with a view to measuring not only outputs (among others, analyzing the law on the books and measuring the number of land titles which have been issued) but also impacts (moving beyond a pure desk study and looking at market performance and investment increases, improved sustainable management practices and possibly also reduced conflicts). In order to arrive at such an analysis, the first part will be a desk study, analyzing the legal framework, land administration and institutions, as well as types of tenure. The second part of the analysis will focus on the legal framework for sustainable land management practices. The research will focus on Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan with two of these states selected for in-depth case studies. The findings of appropriate desk studies will be included into a comparative analysis, taking into account the following criteria: (1) legal certainty, (2) individual character of property rights (fundamental rights character), (3) interrelationship between individual (property) rights and common interests (conservation of the environment and appropriate natural resources), (4) access to justice, (5) enforceability of property rights and land tenure rights.

Methods:
The first part of the study will primarily apply legal methodology, ranging from documentation across hermeneutical analysis to a review of appropriate court rulings.
The second part of the study will make use of input/output and social-accounting matrices. Data will be obtained from land administration authorities but also on the basis of field research and expert interviews. On that basis relational arguments will be developed, linking legal and economic analysis.

Required qualification
The applicant should meet following qualification and skills:
• University degree in Law
• Particular expertise in property rights, land tenure, public law and comparative law
• Understanding of land use aspects (proved by professional and/or study record)
• Proficiency in English
• Interest in multidisciplinary and multicultural research

Application procedure
The full application contains:
• Motivation letter (including personal contact data)
• CV (including information on academic career and study course specialisation, professional record, former scholarships or awards, knowledge of foreign languages)
• Copy of diploma
• Draft of research proposal including work and time schedule

Please, send the application (by email) until 12th of March 2010 to both following addresses:
• Prof. Dr. Thilo Marauhn, Faculty of Law, Justus Liebig University, Licher Str. 76, 35394 Giessen / Germany
E-mail: Thilo.Marauhn@recht.uni-giessen.de
• Mr. Vadim Ni, Kazak Scientific Research Institute of Ecology and Climate, 597 Seyfullina Street, Room 504, Almaty 050022
E-mail: vadimnee@mail.ru

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. The selection process is due to be completed end of March. A first study stay for Germany is foreseen April – July 2010.
For any questions, please contact:  Thilo.Marauhn@recht.uni-giessen.de

web-site: http://www.bilim.kz