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SURV456 Land Tenure 3

An exposure to wider issues of land tenure, land administration, land registration and cadastral surveying in the national and international arena.

Very broadly, land tenure is the relationship between people and land - a relationship that bridges the gap between surveying and other disciplines, such as anthropology and the social sciences. This paper looks at a broad spectrum of land tenure issues ranging from boundaries to ways of securing rights in land, informal settlement (squatting) and community-based natural resource management. As the world population continues to climb, further pressure is being exerted on land, and an understanding of land tenure is increasingly important in poverty alleviation, housing provision and food security. Land tenure is a field in which wisdom and careful judgement is needed as well as knowledge.

Paper title Land Tenure 3
Paper code SURV456
Subject Surveying
EFTS 0.1334
Points 18 points
Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,173.39
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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216 points
SURV 426, SURV 556
Recommended Preparation
SURV 306 or SURV 316
Schedule C
May not be credited together with SURV427 passed before 2005.
Although SURV 306 forms an ideal preparation for SURV 456, it is not a requirement.

Dr Francesca Marzatico

Teaching staff

Convenor and Lecturer: Dr Francesca Marzatico

Paper Structure
The paper explores a spectrum of land tenure issues including:
  • Boundaries
  • Securing and documenting rights in land
  • Land tenure types
  • Communal tenure
  • Informal settlement and land invasion
  • Adjudication
  • Fragmentation and multiple ownership
  • Community-based natural resource management
  • Credit
  • Voluntary land tenure guidelines
  • Land administration
  • Property markets and leasing
  • Treaty making
  • Case studies from other countries
Teaching Arrangements

The paper is offered in the second semester of alternate years, with the next course being offered in 2023. Teaching is by way of lectures, tutorials on topical land tenure issues and through students sharing their own findings on countries with land tenure and cadastral systems dissimilar to that of New Zealand. Students complete an in-depth study on these countries and, towards the end of the semester, present these country projects to the rest of the class.

There are two tests in the semester to ensure that learning is spread evenly throughout the semester, and sometimes a mini-test on tutorial readings prior to tutorials.


Textbooks are not required for this paper.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Research, Self-motivation.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Improvements to land tenure systems are best done with an awareness of alternative models and wider global issues, and this paper provides knowledge and skills that should help graduates to take their place as players in the land tenure consultancies both within New Zealand and internationally.

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Wednesday 10:00-10:50 28-34, 36-41
Thursday 09:00-10:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Friday 10:00-10:50 29-34, 36-41