Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department / School



The formulation of land policies of the United States has been a gradual and continuous process. Land policies were built upon the experiences of the past and goals for the future. The physical characteristics of the land and the cultural characteristics of its owners and operators greatly affected the outcome of land programs designed to carry out policy. An evaluation of land policies, present and past, is not undertaken without examining the social, political, and economic conditions prevailing when the policies were formulated. Such an examination for the United States indicated changes in the concepts of property and tenure, and differences in the achievement of equality and individual freedom by different tenure institutions. The primary generalization which can be drawn is that while American land policies did achieve their purpose of settling and developing the major portion of the public domain, yet in many respects, they fell short of achieving other policy goals. The idea of complete owner-operatorship of American farms, for instance, was never quite achieved. A study of the history of land policies in South Dakota, including the purchase, development, and settlement of the land, provides valuable lessons. Although land policy is no longer the main part of agricultural policy of the United States, nevertheless, land policy formulation remains important, particularly as its lessons may be applied to problems of underdeveloped countries of the world. Iran economically is one of the underdeveloped countries of the world. Its land tenure and land use system needs drastic changes and improvement. Improvement of Iranian agriculture will require many steps, including land tenancy reform, improving the systems of property taxation, land registration, and agricultural education. Although the climate, environment, and culture of the people of South Dakota are different from those of Iran, nevertheless, certain of its experiences grained in land development could be used as a guide for formulating land policy in Iran.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Land use -- Iran
Land use -- South Dakota


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University