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Land tenure in Ethiopia: Continuity and change, shifting rulers, and the quest for state control

Author

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  • Crewett, Wibke
  • Bogale, Ayalneh
  • Korf, Benedikt

Abstract

"Ethiopia experiences a fierce political debate about the appropriate land tenure policy. After the fall of the socialist derg regime in 1991, land property rights have remained vested in the state and only usufruct rights have been alienated to farmers – to the disappointment of international donor agencies. This has nurtured an antagonistic debate between advocates of the privatization of land property rights to individual plot holders and those supporting the government's position. This debate, however, fails to account for the diversity and continuities in Ethiopian land tenure systems. This paper reviews the changing bundles of rights farmers have held during various political regimes in Ethiopia, the imperial, the derg and the current one, at different times and places. Our analysis indicates the marked differences in tenure arrangements after the fall of the empire, but identifies some commonalities in land tenure regimes as well, in particular between the traditional rist system and the current tenure system." authors' abstract

Suggested Citation

  • Crewett, Wibke & Bogale, Ayalneh & Korf, Benedikt, 2008. "Land tenure in Ethiopia: Continuity and change, shifting rulers, and the quest for state control," CAPRi working papers 91, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:worpps:91
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    4. Platteau, Jean-Philippe & Gaspart, Frederic, 2003. "The Risk of Resource Misappropriation in Community-Driven Development," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(10), pages 1687-1703, October.
    5. Knox, Anna & Meinzen-Dick, Ruth Suseela, 2000. "Collective action, property rights, and devolution of natural resource management: exchange of knowledge and implications for policy," CAPRi working papers 11, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Bezabih, Mintewab & Holden, Stein, 2010. "The Role of Land Certification in Reducing Gender Gaps in Productivity in Rural Ethiopia," Discussion Papers dp-10-23-efd, Resources For the Future.
    2. Ratner, B. D., 2013. "Addressing conflict through collective action in natural resource management: a synthesis of experience," IWMI Working Papers H046235, International Water Management Institute.
    3. Reichhuber, Anke & Requate, Till, 2012. "Alternative use systems for the remaining Ethiopian cloud forest and the role of Arabica coffee — A cost-benefit analysis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 102-113.
    4. Chamberlin, Jordan & Schmidt, Emily, 2012. "Ethiopian Agriculture: A dynamic geographic perspective," IFPRI book chapters,in: Food and agriculture in Ethiopia: Progress and policy challenges, chapter 2 International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    5. Matz, Julia Anna, 2013. "Ethnicity, Marriage and Family Income," Discussion Papers 154935, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
    6. Kenneth Houngbedji, 2015. "Property Rights and Labour Supply in Ethiopia," PSE Working Papers halshs-01145827, HAL.
    7. Akpalu, Wisdom & Bezabih, Mintewab, 2014. "Tenure insecurity, climate variability, and renting-out decisions among female small-holder farmers in Ethiopia," WIDER Working Paper Series 140, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    8. Cohen, Marc J. & Lemma, Mamusha, 2011. "Agricultural extension services and gender equality: An institutional analysis of four districts in Ethiopia," ESSP working papers 28, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    9. Wisdom Akpalu & Mintewab Bezabih, 2015. "Tenure Insecurity, Climate Variability and Renting out Decisions among Female Small-Holder Farmers in Ethiopia," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(6), pages 1-16, June.
    10. Cohen, Marc J. & Lemma, Mamusha, 2011. "Agricultural extension services and gender equality: An institutional analysis of four districts in Ethiopia," IFPRI discussion papers 1094, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    11. Chamberlin, Jordan & Schmidt, Emily, 2012. "Ethiopian Agriculture: A dynamic geographic perspective," IFPRI book chapters,in: Food and agriculture in Ethiopia: Progress and policy challenges, chapter 2 International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    12. Bezabih, Mintewab & Kohlin, Gunnar & Mannberg, Andrea, 2011. "Trust, tenure insecurity, and land certification in rural Ethiopia," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 833-843.
    13. Mintewab Bezabih & Andrea Mannberg & Eyerusalem Siba, 2014. "The land certification program and off-farm employment in Ethiopia," GRI Working Papers 168, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.

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    Keywords

    Land tenure; Property rights regime; Bundles of rights; Legal pluralism; Devolution;

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