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inFRONT: a research programme on sustainable placemaking in investment frontiers


Welcome to the website of the inFRONT research programme. The ‘Inside the Investment Frontier’ Project will offer a perspective on investment-induced displacement and resettlement in the global South.

A wide range of globally articulated investment projects – infrastructure development, mineral extraction, agribusiness and forestry, nature conservation and tourism development – have led to displacement of millions of people worldwide. While much emphasis has been placed on compensation and livelihood restoration of the displaced and self-planned resettlement, it remains unclear whether and how these displacement experiences and new settlements could lead to sustainable community-rebuilding and local and regional development. We ask:

How can sustainable places be made within the newly expanding investment frontiers?

The inFRONT project takes Mozambique as the case, a country that is dealing with various types of resettlement projects induced by foreign investments. The team looks into:

  • community rebuilding processes in conservation displacement and resettlement in Limpopo National Park;
  • chains of mobility induced by resettlement projects within the Nacala Corridor and their influence on community place attachment;
  • mapping out spatial patterns of displacement and resettlement and vegetation change in multiple investment frontiers of Cabo Delgado.

The 5-year NWO project will open a new research field of sustainable place-making in relation to displacement and resettlement in Africa.


This research programme is funded by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) through an Aspasia Research Grant, and by the Toyota foundation.