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Insecure Land Rights and Share Tenancy: Evidence from Madagascar

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  • Marc F. Bellemare

Abstract

Most studies of tenurial insecurity focus on its effects on investment. This paper studies the hitherto unexplored relationship between tenurial insecurity and land tenancy contracts. Based on distinct features of formal law and customary rights in Madagascar, this paper augments the canonical model of sharecropping by making the strength of the landlord’s property right increasing in the amount of risk she bears within the contract. Using data on landlords’ subjective perceptions in rural Madagascar, empirical tests support the hypothesis that insecure property rights drive contract choice but offer little support in favor of the canonical risk sharing hypothesis.

Suggested Citation

  • Marc F. Bellemare, 2012. "Insecure Land Rights and Share Tenancy: Evidence from Madagascar," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 88(1), pages 155-180.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:88:y:2012:i:1:p:155-180
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    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.
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    4. Macours, Karen & Janvry, Alain de & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 2010. "Insecurity of property rights and social matching in the tenancy market," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(7), pages 880-899, October.
    5. Luis H. B. Braido, 2008. "Evidence on the Incentive Properties of Share Contracts," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 51(2), pages 327-349, May.
    6. Ellickson, Robert C, 1989. "A Hypothesis of Wealth-Maximizing Norms: Evidence from the Whaling Industry," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(1), pages 83-97, Spring.
    7. Elaine M. Liu, 2013. "Time to Change What to Sow: Risk Preferences and Technology Adoption Decisions of Cotton Farmers in China," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(4), pages 1386-1403, October.
    8. Menale Kassie & Stein Holden, 2007. "Sharecropping efficiency in Ethiopia: threats of eviction and kinship," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 37(2-3), pages 179-188, September.
    9. Deininger, Klaus & Jin, Songqing, 2003. "The Impact of Property Rights on Households' Investment, Risk Coping, and Policy Preferences: Evidence from China," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 51(4), pages 851-882, July.
    10. Marc F. Bellemare, 2009. "Sharecropping, Insecure Land Rights and Land Titling Policies: A Case Study of Lac Alaotra, Madagascar," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 27(1), pages 87-106, January.
    11. Jean-Jacques Laffont & Mohamed Salah Matoussi, 1995. "Moral Hazard, Financial Constraints and Sharecropping in El Oulja," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(3), pages 381-399.
    12. Matthew Baker & Thomas Miceli & C. F. Sirmans & Geoffrey K. Turnbull, 2001. "Property Rights by Squatting: Land Ownership Risk and Adverse Possession Statutes," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 77(3), pages 360-370.
    13. Marc F. Bellemare & Zachary S. Brown, 2010. "On the (Mis)Use of Wealth as a Proxy for Risk Aversion," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 92(1), pages 273-282.
    14. 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.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Ten Things Applied Econometricians Should Keep in Mind
      by Marc F. Bellemare in Marc F. Bellemare on 2013-09-18 14:00:07

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Erin K. Fletcher, 2016. "Match quality and maternal investments in children," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 83-102, March.
    2. Carol Newman & Finn Tarp & Katleen van den Broeck, 2015. "Property Rights and Productivity: The Case of Joint Land Titling in Vietnam," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 91(1), pages 91-105.
    3. Holden, Stein T. & Otsuka, Keijiro, 2014. "The roles of land tenure reforms and land markets in the context of population growth and land use intensification in Africa," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 88-97.
    4. Brhanu , Desta & Holden , Stein T., 2018. "Variation in Output Shares and Endogenous Matching in Land Rental Contracts," CLTS Working Papers 2/18, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Centre for Land Tenure Studies.
    5. Marc F. Bellemare, 2013. "The Productivity Impacts of Formal and Informal Land Rights: Evidence from Madagascar," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 89(2), pages 272-290.
    6. Schwerhoff, Gregor & Kalkuhl, Matthias & Waha, Katharina, 2016. "Agricultural Risk Management and Land Tenure," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145792, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • K11 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Property Law
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment

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