Ethnicity and Networks in African Trade
AbstractThis paper investigates the role of ethnicity and networks in domestic agricultural trade in Africa. Using a theoretical model of self- disciplining markets, we begin by demonstrating that statistical discrimination and networks can generate similar patterns of ethnic concentration. We then test these ideas using original survey data collected in Benin, Malawi and Madagascar. We find no evidence that members of a particular sex or ethnic group are more easily trusted by suppliers and trust clients more easily. In contrast, network effects have a strong and systematic effect on trust and information sharing. Women accumulate working capital slower than men, including in Benin where women represent 80% of surveyed traders.This does not suggest the presence of discrimination. Agricultural trade appears open to all, irrespective of gender, ethnicity, or religion.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Development and Comp Systems with number 0409022.
Length: 53 pages
Date of creation: 22 Sep 2004
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- Marcel Fafchamps, 2002. "Ethnicity and Networks in African Trade," CSAE Working Paper Series 2002-20, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
- Marcel Fafchamps, 2002. "Ethnicity and Networks in African Trade," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2002-20, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AFR-2004-09-30 (Africa)
- NEP-ALL-2004-09-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2004-09-30 (Development)
- NEP-NET-2004-10-30 (Network Economics)
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