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Doug Hertzler

Doug Hertzler

Senior Policy Analyst

Meet Doug, one of our Senior Policy Analysts at ActionAid USA. His work focuses on land rights and global food security issues. His work includes monitoring global agricultural investment policies and advocating for civil society participation in food and agriculture policy.

Doug holds a PhD in Anthropology from the University of Iowa and has conducted research on social movements and land rights in Bolivia. Prior to that, he spent over five years living in indigenous smallholder villages in eastern Bolivia where he worked with agro-forestry and other rural development projects.

From 2001 through 2012, he served as a faculty member at Eastern Mennonite University, and as Associate Director of the Washington Community Scholars’ Center.Doug has a deep personal background in agriculture, having been raised in dairy, corn, soy, and vegetable farming in central Pennsylvania. He is fluent in English and Spanish and enjoys both urban and rural living. Overall, he loves being outdoors, so his latest goal is to find some more time to do more camping.

Why are you working with ActionAid?  

I share ActionAid’s commitment to building cooperative people power. We all have a responsibility to make sure there is equitable access to financial and natural resources for everyone to be able to live well. We all have economic, social, and cultural human rights and the responsibility to care for the planet without marginalizing anyone. 

I’m an expert! Talk to me about:

Food Security; the Right to Food and Agriculture; Climate Change; Climate Justice; Politics and Economics; Land Rights; Social Justice. 


POSTS BY Doug Hertzler

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Connecting Land Rights, Migration and Human Rights on Capitol Hill

October 22, 2018 By

The U.S. immigration system is descending further into crisis, as the Trump Administration’s authoritarian and draconian policies are only increasing injustices and exacerbating the underlying problems. The Trump Administration continues aggressive deportations and detentions and the separation of families at the border, yet a massive caravan of thousands of refugees…

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Indigenous Peoples’ Right to Land Is a Basic Human Right

August 9, 2018 By

Today is International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples! We celebrate the countless contributions of Indigenous peoples to the world, including their diversity of ideas, languages and technologies, their knowledge and histories, and their lasting commitments to protecting the environment. In a world threatened by rapid climate change, Indigenous peoples…

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UN Rapporteur for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Visits Jailed Land Rights Defender in Guatemala

May 11, 2018 By

Earlier this week, UN Rapporteur for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Vicky Tauli-Corpuz, visited Maya Q’eqchi land rights defender Abelino Chub Caal, imprisoned for 15 months on baseless charges, and denounced racism and unequal access to justice in Guatemala. As Tauli-Corpuz explained, the case of Chub Caal is just the…

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Documents Forged with Cricket Poop Used to Legalize Land Claims in Brazil as World Bank Project Opens Doors to Land Grabbers

April 2, 2018 By

Earlier this month, the World Bank held its annual land and poverty conference. Ironically, the title chosen for the event was Land Governance in an Interconnected World, but while the bank’s bigwigs championed their role in this space, we joined with 70 organizations in Brazil and across the globe to…

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Palm Oil Pays for Human Rights Abuses, Land Grabbing, and Corruption

February 1, 2018 By

Last week the Guatemalan attorney general and the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) announced that arrest warrants for bribery charges had been issued for three key figures in the country’s palm oil trade: Carlos Arévalo Garcia, legal representative of the palm oil company REPSA, and Hugo Molina Botrán…