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Deforestation, Land Use, and Property Rights: Empirical Evidence from Darién, Panama

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  • Gerald C. Nelson
  • GVirginia Harris
  • Steven W. Stone

Abstract

Economic conventional wisdom suggests that providing land users with more secure property rights will result in more sustainable land use and less deforestation. In this paper, we use spatial econometric techniques to evaluate quantitatively the effect on land use of designated property rights in three parts of DarieÂn province - a national park where no human activity is supposed to occur, and two reserves for indigenous peoples. Results suggest that legal property rights for an indigenous population can influence land use. Geography appears to be more important than legal protection for the national park.

Suggested Citation

  • Gerald C. Nelson & GVirginia Harris & Steven W. Stone, 2001. "Deforestation, Land Use, and Property Rights: Empirical Evidence from Darién, Panama," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 77(2), pages 187-205.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:77:y:2001:i:2:p:187-205
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Gerald C. Nelson & Daniel Hellerstein, 1997. "Do Roads Cause Deforestation? Using Satellite Images in Econometric Analysis of Land Use," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(1), pages 80-88.
    2. Marc Jacobson & Joel De Castro & Vianca Aliaga & Julio Romero & MAllison Davis, 1998. "The Role of Tenure Security and Private Time Preference in Neotropical Deforestation," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 74(2), pages 162-170.
    3. Simmons, Cynthia S., 1997. "Forest management practices in the Bayano region of Panama: Cultural variations," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 989-1000, June.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • Q23 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Forestry

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