IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/deveco/v103y2013icp167-181.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The political economy of rural property rights and the persistence of the dual economy

Author

Listed:
  • Fergusson, Leopoldo

Abstract

Rural areas often have more than one regime of property rights and production. Large, private-property farms owned by powerful landowners coexist with subsistence peasants who farm small plots with limited property rights. At the same time, there is broad consensus that individual, well-specified and secure property rights over land improve economic outcomes. If property rights in land are so beneficial, why are they not adopted more widely? I put forward a theory according to which politically powerful landowners choose weak property rights to impoverish peasants and force them to work for low wages. Moreover, because weak property rights force peasants to stay in the rural sector protecting their property, the incentives to establish poor property rights are especially salient when peasants can migrate to an alternative sector, such as when urban wages increase with industrialization.

Suggested Citation

  • Fergusson, Leopoldo, 2013. "The political economy of rural property rights and the persistence of the dual economy," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 167-181.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:103:y:2013:i:c:p:167-181
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2013.02.009
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304387813000229
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Brasselle, Anne-Sophie & Gaspart, Frederic & Platteau, Jean-Philippe, 2002. "Land tenure security and investment incentives: puzzling evidence from Burkina Faso," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 373-418, April.
    2. Acemoglu, Daron & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 1999. "Information Accumulation in Development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 5-38, March.
    3. Deininger, Klaus & Binswanger, Hans, 1999. "The Evolution of the World Bank's Land Policy: Principles, Experience, and Future Challenges," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 14(2), pages 247-276, August.
    4. Hans P. Binswanger & Klaus Deininger, 1997. "Explaining Agricultural and Agrarian Policies in Developing Countries," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(4), pages 1958-2005, December.
    5. Piyabha Kongsamut & Sergio Rebelo & Danyang Xie, 2001. "Beyond Balanced Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(4), pages 869-882.
    6. Piyabha Kongsamut & Sergio Rebelo & Danyang Xie, 2001. "Beyond Balanced Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(4), pages 869-882.
    7. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Andrew F. Newman, 1998. "Information, the Dual Economy, and Development," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(4), pages 631-653.
    8. Markus Goldstein & Christopher Udry, 2008. "The Profits of Power: Land Rights and Agricultural Investment in Ghana," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(6), pages 981-1022, December.
    9. Oded Galor & Omer Moav & Dietrich Vollrath, 2009. "Inequality in Landownership, the Emergence of Human-Capital Promoting Institutions, and the Great Divergence," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(1), pages 143-179.
    10. Richard Hornbeck, 2010. "Barbed Wire: Property Rights and Agricultural Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(2), pages 767-810.
    11. Hanan G. Jacoby & Guo Li & Scott Rozelle, 2002. "Hazards of Expropriation: Tenure Insecurity and Investment in Rural China," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1420-1447, December.
    12. Sonin, Konstantin, 2003. "Why the rich may favor poor protection of property rights," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 715-731, December.
    13. Besley, Timothy & Ghatak, Maitreesh, 2010. "Property Rights and Economic Development," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Dani Rodrik & Mark Rosenzweig (ed.),Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 4525-4595, Elsevier.
    14. Roland Bénabou, 1996. "Inequality and Growth," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1996, Volume 11, pages 11-92, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. repec:dau:papers:123456789/10091 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Fenske, James, 2011. "Land tenure and investment incentives: Evidence from West Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 137-156, July.
    17. Binswanger, Hans P. & Deininger, Klaus, 1993. "South African land policy: The legacy of history and current options," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 21(9), pages 1451-1475, September.
    18. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A., 2005. "Institutions as a Fundamental Cause of Long-Run Growth," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.),Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 6, pages 385-472, Elsevier.
    19. Cecilia Garcia-Penalosa & Eve Caroli & Philippe Aghion, 1999. "Inequality and Economic Growth: The Perspective of the New Growth Theories," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1615-1660, December.
    20. Daron Acemoglu, 2006. "Modeling Inefficient Institutions," NBER Working Papers 11940, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Antonia Diaz, 2000. "On the Political Economy of Latin American Land Reforms," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 3(3), pages 551-571, July.
    22. Deininger, Klaus & Feder, Gershon, 2001. "Land institutions and land markets," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, in: B. L. Gardner & G. C. Rausser (ed.),Handbook of Agricultural Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 6, pages 288-331, Elsevier.
    23. Binswanger, Hans P. & Deininger, Klaus & Feder, Gershon, 1995. "Power, distortions, revolt and reform in agricultural land relations," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Hollis Chenery & T.N. Srinivasan (ed.),Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 42, pages 2659-2772, Elsevier.
    24. Erica Field, 2007. "Entitled to Work: Urban Property Rights and Labor Supply in Peru," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(4), pages 1561-1602.
    25. Besley, Timothy, 1995. "Property Rights and Investment Incentives: Theory and Evidence from Ghana," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(5), pages 903-937, October.
    26. Tasso Adamopoulos, 2008. "Land Inequality and the Transition to Modern Growth," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(2), pages 257-282, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Why are property rights not adopted more widely?
      by UDADISI in UDADISI on 2012-07-29 01:24:00

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Fergusson, Leopoldo & Larreguy, Horacio & Riaño, Juan Felipe, 2015. "Political constraints and state capacity: Evidence from a land allocation program in Mexico," Research Department working papers 764, CAF Development Bank Of Latinamerica.
    2. Leopoldo Fergusson & Horacio Larreguy & Juan Felipe Riaño, 2018. "Political Competition and State Capacity: Evidence from a Land Allocation Program in Mexico," Documentos de Trabajo LACEA 016517, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA.
    3. Pedro Naso & Erwin Bulte & Tim Swanson, 2017. "Can there be benefits from competing legal regimes? The impact of legal pluralism in post-conflict Sierra Leone," CIES Research Paper series 56-2017, Centre for International Environmental Studies, The Graduate Institute.
    4. Pi Jiancai & Zhou Yu, 2015. "Rural Property Rights, Migration, and Welfare in Developing Countries," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 15(3), pages 997-1029, July.
    5. Jérémie GIGNOUX & Karen MACOURS & Liam WREN-LEWIS, 2015. "Impact of land administration programs on agricultural productivity and rural development: existing evidence, challenges and new approaches," Review of Agricultural and Environmental Studies - Revue d'Etudes en Agriculture et Environnement, INRA Department of Economics, vol. 96(3), pages 467-498.
    6. Juan Carlos Muñoz-Mora & Santiago Tobón-Zapata & Jesse d'Anjou, 2014. "Does land titling matter? The role of land property rights in the war on illicit crops in Colombia," HiCN Working Papers 168, Households in Conflict Network.
    7. Galvis, Luis-Armando (ed.), 2017. "Estudios sociales del Pacífico colombiano," Books, Banco de la Republica de Colombia, number 2017-12, July-Dece.
    8. van der Windt, Peter & Humphreys, Macartan & Medina, Lily & Timmons, Jeffrey F. & Voors, Maarten, 2019. "Citizen Attitudes Toward Traditional and State Authorities: Substitutes or Complements?," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 1810-1840.
    9. Naso, Pedro & Bulte, Erwin & Swanson, Tim, 2020. "Legal pluralism in post-conflict Sierra Leone," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 61(C).
    10. Pi Jiancai & Ge Yang & Yin Jun, 2017. "The Impacts of Rural Property Rights on Urban Unemployment, Wage Inequality, and Welfare in Developing Countries," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 17(1), pages 1-15, February.
    11. Rodriguez Acosta, Mauricio, 2016. "Essays in political economy and resource economic : A macroeconomic approach," Other publications TiSEM 1e39ef1b-43a2-4f95-892c-6, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    12. de Janvry, Alain & Gonzalez-Navarro, Marco & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 2014. "Are land reforms granting complete property rights politically risky? Electoral outcomes of Mexico's certification program," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 216-225.
    13. Muñoz-Mora, Juan Carlos & Tobón, Santiago & d’Anjou, Jesse Willem, 2018. "The role of land property rights in the war on illicit crops: Evidence from Colombia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 268-283.
    14. Mizuno, Nobuhiro, 2016. "Political structure as a legacy of indirect colonial rule: Bargaining between national governments and rural elites in Africa," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 1023-1039.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political economy; Institutions; Economic development; Taxation; Property rights; Land; Dualism;

    JEL classification:

    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:103:y:2013:i:c:p:167-181. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Haili He). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/devec .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.