At a time when numbers of farmers are declining and absentee landownership is increasing, this Doctoral thesis uses mixed quantitative and qualitative methods and the concepts of power, capitalism and sustainability, to construct a theoretically informed relational typology to classify international types of landowners and establish trends in landownership and underlying factors contributing to these trends since European occupation of the Lachlan River catchment in New South Wales, Australia. Findings challenge ahistorical and stereotypical views about absentee landownership. In the Lachlan catchment, the extent of absentee landownership in 2009 was as high as its extent in 1849. Corporate agriculture, including pastoral companies and financial firms, have invested in land and agriculture in the catchment since the 1850s. From the height of resident landownership in 1970, the increase in different types of absentee landowners, including foreign and local town-based entities, lifestyle property owners and Aboriginal incorporations, may not be as detrimental to agriculture and rural communities as some discourses suggest. However, there are some critical caveats related to capacity building for Aboriginal landowners, as well as land rights, land zoning, the need for highly qualified farm managers and attention to environmental, labour, tenancy and tax issues.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Award date||01 Sep 2012|
|Place of Publication||Australia|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|