Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
08-06: What Evaluations Tell us on the Impact of Land Interventions
Wednesday, 22/Mar/2017:
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Session Chair: Arianna Legovini, World Bank, United States of America
Location: MC C1-100


Assessing the Impact of Second-Level Land Certification in Ethiopia

Lauren Persha1, Adi Greif2, Heather Huntington3, Sarah Lowery4

1NORC; 2Stanford Research Institute; 3Cloudburst Consulting Group, United States of America; 4USAID, United States of America

This paper presents the results of a USAID-funded impact evaluation of the Ethiopia Land Tenure Administration Program (ELTAP) and the Ethiopia Land Administration Program (ELAP). Utilizing panel data collected from 4,319 households in Ethiopia, the evaluation employed a Difference-in-Difference design coupled with matching to examine the impact of second-level certification relative to first-level certification across a range of household-level outcomes. The evaluation found small, positive, and potentially important impacts on household access to credit and on indicators of female empowerment. Little evidence for household impacts of second-level beyond first-level certification was found for indicators related to tenure security, land disputes, land rental activity, or soil and water conservation. The key findings of the evaluation presented in this paper contribute to the knowledge around the impacts of formal land documentation on household level development outcomes. Moreover, the critical analysis of the impacts and limitations of ELTAP and ELAP can contribute to enhanced programming during the Government of Ethiopia’s ongoing scale up of second-level land certification. Finally, the evaluation findings may inform the development of a national land use policy.


Formalizing Rural Land Rights: Long-Run Evidence from a Policy Experiment in Benin

Markus Goldstein1, Kenneth Houngbedji2, Florence Kondylis1, Edouard Mensah3, Michael O'Sullivan1, Harris Selod1

1World Bank, United States of America; 2Paris School of Economics; 3Michigan State University

We present evidence from the first large-scale randomized-controlled trial of a land formalization program, the Plans Fonciers Ruraux in Benin, which aim to improve tenure security and stimulate agricultural investment through the formalization of customary land rights in rural areas. The intervention consists of an identification of land right holders and mapping of parcels at the village level followed by the delivery of property rights (Certificats Fonciers Ruraux) to the identified land right holders. We draw on two rounds of data to assess the short-run and medium-run effects of the program. Improved land security following land demarcation in 2011 led to an increase in long-term agricultural investment in tree planting and perennial crops. Female-headed households further responded to demarcation by closing the gender gap in fallowing, a key soil fertility investment. Four years later, treated households continued to report significantly higher rates of perennial crop cultivation. Despite the observed increases in investment, no average effects on output or farm yields were observed in either 2011 or 2015.


Inheritance law reform, empowerment, and human capital accumulation: Second generation effects from India

Klaus Deininger1, Sognqing Jin2, Fang Xia3

1World Bank, United States of America; 2Zhejiang University & Michigan State University; 3University of International Business and Economics, Beijing, China

Evidence from three Indian states, one of which amended inheritance legislation in 1994, allows us to assess first- and second-generation effects of inheritance reform using a triple-difference strategy. Second- generation effects on education, time use, and health are larger and more significant than first-generation ones even if mothers’ endowments are controlled for. Improved access to bank accounts and sanitation facilities in the parent generation suggest that inheritance reform empowered females in a sustainable way, a notion supported by significantly higher female survival rates.


Impact of property rights reform to support China’s rural-urban integration: Evidence from the Chengdu national experiment

Klaus Deininger1, Songqing Jin2, Shouying Liu3, Fang Xia4

1World Bank, United States of America; 2Zhejiang University & Michigan State University; 3Renmin University; 4University of International Business and Economics, Beijing, China

As part of a national experiment, Chengdu prefecture implemented, in 2008, ambitious property rights reforms including complete registration of all land together with measures to ease transferability and eliminate migration restrictions. We examine impacts of these reforms at village and household level, using a discontinuity design with spatial fixed effects to compare 529 villages just inside and outside the prefecture’s border and the Statistics Bureau’s regular household panel. Village level evidence points suggests that reforms increased tenure security, aligned land use closer to economic incentives, mainly through market transfers, and led to an increase in enterprise start-ups. This is consistent with household level analysis suggesting s reforms increased consumption and income, especially for less wealthy and less educated households, with estimated benefits well above the cost of implementation. Local labor supply increased with the young shifting towards agriculture and the old towards off-farm employment. Agricultural yields, intensity of input use, and diversity of output also increased, suggesting that improved property rights helped to increase investment and diversification.