Abstract

Several decades ago, property rights in Natural Resources Development (NRD) had provided benefits to the right holders and resulted in cost burden on the host communities; in terms of human right abuses, conflicts and environmental degradation. Gradually, the concepts of sustainable development, public participation and  corporate responsibility have shaped the limits of property rights in NRD. This has resulted in shared benefits and costs for both the property right holders and the host communities. This paper seeks to stimulate discussions on understanding how the interactions between property rights and human rights in NRD affect and are affected by concerns for the host communities, the environment and the world at large. It concludes that the concept of "Social License to Operate" will in the nearest future usher in a property rights regime in NRD in which the host communities will be the ultimate determinant of who does what? where? And how?