Mexico has a long and complex history of land reform as a result of the peasant struggle during the Mexican Revolution of 1910. Many conflicts arose as a result of the implementation itself, together with conflicts that had been inherited from the past. In 1992, Article 27 of the Constitution was amended, as was the Agrarian law.
The reform of Article 27 was followed in 1993 by PROCEDE, a program aimed at regulating the tenure of land by defining clear property rights for the millions of peasants in ejidos and agrarian communities and by providing them with proper titles to these rights.
This article focuses on the way in which PROCEDE has dealt with conflict resolution with the aim of reaching solutions to disputes at the local level. It is argued that even though the land regularization program allows for democratic and participatory approaches to conflict resolution, procedures are entrenched in the legalistic framework and practices of formal institutions that rule and enforce property rights in rural Mexico. Little attention is given to how disputes or conflicts are actually negotiated or solved at the local level.
Hence, there is a need for better understanding of how people deal with the conflicts that emerge regarding claims to rights and their enforcement. There is space for strengthening the participation of people in the bargaining process and also the tools of government and non-government actors in enhancing cooperation between individuals and communities for resolving conflicts and avoiding the creation of new ones.