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Indigenous Land Rights Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Constraint on Productivity?

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  • Migot-Adholla, Shem, et al

Abstract

This article uses cross-sectional evidence from Ghana, Kenya, and Rwanda in 1987-88 to examine the question, Are indigenous land rights systems in sub-Saharan Africa a constraint on productivity? The evidence supports the hypothesis suggested by historical studies, that African indigenous land rights systems have spontaneously evolved from systems of communal control toward individual sized rights in response to increases in commercialization and population pressure. Cross-sectional data on the incidence of land improvements and on land yields provide little support for the view that limitations under indigenous law on the right to transfer land are a constraint on productivity. Copyright 1991 by Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Migot-Adholla, Shem, et al, 1991. "Indigenous Land Rights Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Constraint on Productivity?," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 5(1), pages 155-175, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:5:y:1991:i:1:p:155-75
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