Capability approach to compulsory purchase compensation: evidence of the functionings of land identified by affected landowners in Scotland

Jyoti Rao, Piyush Tiwari, Norman Hutchison

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    4 Citations (Scopus)
    4 Downloads (Pure)


    This research was inspired by the challenges faced by landowners seeking adequate compensation for all their losses following the compulsory acquisition of land by public authorities in Scotland. This research uses Sen’s ‘capability approach’ and argues that the well-being contribution of land extends beyond its market value and therefore compensation payable following compulsory acquisition should include these other losses. The aim of this research is to identify the valuable functionings (or usefulness) of land from the perspective of the existing landowners. The functionings which contribute to their well-being can be both financial and non-financial and should be appropriately compensated. This research identifies and creates a list of valuable ‘functionings’ of individual landowners who have suffered losses due to compulsory acquisition, servitude and severance under various public projects in Scotland. Qualitative Content Analysis is applied to analyse case reports prepared by the Lands Tribunal for Scotland. In-depth analysis of 19 relevant cases is performed with the use of NVIVO software and reveals a list of 15 different functionings of land. Results show that financial functionings are the most frequently discussed at the Lands Tribunal. The debate on the loss of financial benefits from expected and planned development on land in the near future is the most debated topic by the landowners.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)305-324
    Number of pages20
    JournalJournal of Property Research
    Issue number4
    Early online date8 Nov 2017
    Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2017



    • compulsory purchase
    • compensation
    • capability approach
    • functioning and capability
    • landownership

    Cite this