IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hbs/wpaper/14-066.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Evolution of Land Distribution in West Bengal 1967-2004: Role of Land Reform and Demographic Changes

Author

Listed:
  • Pranab Bardhan

    (University of California, Berkeley)

  • Michael Luca

    (Harvard Business School, Negotiation, Organizations & Markets Unit)

  • Dilip Mookherjee

    (Department of Economics, Boston University)

  • Francisco Pino

    (Université Libre de Bruxelles)

Abstract

This paper studies how land reform and population growth affect land inequality and landlessness, focusing particularly on indirect effects owing to their influence on household divisions and land market transactions. Theoretical predictions of a model of household division and land transactions are successfully tested using household panel data from West Bengal spanning 1967-2004. The tenancy reform lowered inequality through its effects on household divisions and land market transactions, but its effect was quantitatively dominated by inequality-raising effects of population growth. The land distribution program lowered landlessness but this was partly offset by targeting failures and induced increases in immigration.

Suggested Citation

  • Pranab Bardhan & Michael Luca & Dilip Mookherjee & Francisco Pino, 2014. "Evolution of Land Distribution in West Bengal 1967-2004: Role of Land Reform and Demographic Changes," Harvard Business School Working Papers 14-066, Harvard Business School.
  • Handle: RePEc:hbs:wpaper:14-066
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/pages/download.aspx?name=14-066.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Sanghamitra Das & Dilip Mookherjee, 2004. "Ownership form and contractual ineficiency: Comparing performance of cooperatives and private factories in the Indian sugar industry," Discussion Papers 04-06, Indian Statistical Institute, Delhi.
    2. 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.
    3. Bardhan, Pranab & Mookherjee, Dilip & Kumar, Neha, 2012. "State-led or market-led green revolution? Role of private irrigation investment vis-a-vis local government programs in West Bengal's farm productivity growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 222-235.
    4. Andrew D. Foster & Mark R. Rosenzweig, 2002. "Household Division and Rural Economic Growth," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 69(4), pages 839-869.
    5. Bardhan, Pranab & Mookherjee, Dilip, 2006. "Pro-poor targeting and accountability of local governments in West Bengal," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(2), pages 303-327, April.
    6. Eswaran, Mukesh & Kotwal, Ashok, 1986. "Access to Capital and Agrarian Production Organisation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(382), pages 482-498, June.
    7. Besley, Timothy & Pande, Rohini & Leight, Jessica & Rao, Vijayendra, 2011. "The regulation of land markets: evidence from tenancy reform in India," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58204, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    8. Pranab Bardhan, 2004. "Scarcity, Conflicts, and Cooperation: Essays in the Political and Institutional Economics of Development," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262524295, December.
    9. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2000. "Land Reform, Poverty Reduction, and Growth: Evidence from India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 115(2), pages 389-430.
    10. Pranab Bardhan & Dilip Mookherjee, 2011. "Subsidized Farm Input Programs and Agricultural Performance: A Farm-Level Analysis of West Bengal's Green Revolution, 1982-1995," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 186-214, October.
    11. 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.
    12. Catherine Guirkinger & Jean-Philippe Platteau, 2011. "Transformation of the Family under Rising Land Pressure: A Theoretical Essay," Working Papers 1108, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
    13. Catherine Guirkinger & Jean-Philippe Platteau, 2014. "The Effect of Land Scarcity on Farm Structure: Empirical Evidence from Mali," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 62(2), pages 195-238.
    14. Abhijit Banerjee & Dilip Mookherjee & Kaivan Munshi & Debraj Ray, 2001. "Inequality, Control Rights, and Rent Seeking: Sugar Cooperatives in Maharashtra," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(1), pages 138-190, February.
    15. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Paul J. Gertler & Maitreesh Ghatak, 2002. "Empowerment and Efficiency: Tenancy Reform in West Bengal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(2), pages 239-280, April.
    16. Lambais, Guilherme B. R., 2008. "Land Reform in Brazil: the arrival of the market model," MPRA Paper 25446, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    17. Davies, James B. (ed.), 2008. "Personal Wealth from a Global Perspective," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199548897, Decembrie.
    18. Pranab Bardhan & Dilip Mookherjee, 2010. "Determinants of Redistributive Politics: An Empirical Analysis of Land Reforms in West Bengal, India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1572-1600, September.
    19. Rawal, Vikas, 2001. "Agrarian Reform and Land Markets: A Study of Land Transactions in Two Villages of West Bengal, 1977-1995," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 49(3), pages 611-629, April.
    20. Catherine Guirkinger & Jean-Philippe Platteau, 2011. "Transformation of the Family under Rising Land Pressure: A Theoretical Essay," Working Papers 1108, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Pranab K. Bardhan & Michael Luca & Dilip Mookherjee & Francisco J. Pino, 2011. "Evolution of Land Distribution in West Bengal 1967-2004: Role of Land Reform," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2011-031, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    2. Sonia Bhalotra & Abhishek Chakravarty & Dilip Mookherjee & Francisco J. Pino, 2019. "Property Rights and Gender Bias: Evidence from Land Reform in West Bengal," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 205-237, April.
    3. Deininger, Klaus & Jin, Songqing & Yadav, Vandana, 2012. "Does sharecropping affect productivity and long-term investment ? evidence from West Bengal's tenancy reforms," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6293, The World Bank.
    4. Pranab Bardhan & Dilip Mookherjee, 2011. "Subsidized Farm Input Programs and Agricultural Performance: A Farm-Level Analysis of West Bengal's Green Revolution, 1982-1995," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 186-214, October.
    5. Pranab Bardhan & Dilip Mookherjee, 2007. "Land Reform And Farm Productivity In West Bengal," Boston University - Department of Economics - The Institute for Economic Development Working Papers Series dp-163, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    6. Bardhan, Pranab & Mookherjee, Dilip & Kumar, Neha, 2012. "State-led or market-led green revolution? Role of private irrigation investment vis-a-vis local government programs in West Bengal's farm productivity growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 222-235.
    7. Pranab Bardhana & Michael Lucab & Dilip Mookherjeeb & Francisco Pinob, 2011. "Evolution of Land Distribution in West Bengal 1967-2004: Role of Land Reform," WIDER Working Paper Series 031, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    8. Besley, Timothy & Leight, Jessica & Pande, Rohini & Rao, Vijayendra, 2016. "Long-run impacts of land regulation: Evidence from tenancy reform in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 72-87.
    9. Bhattacharya, Prasad S. & Mitra, Devashish & Ulubaşoğlu, Mehmet A., 2019. "The political economy of land reform enactments: New cross-national evidence (1900–2010)," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 139(C), pages 50-68.
    10. Mendola, Mariapia & Simtowe, Franklin, 2015. "The Welfare Impact of Land Redistribution: Evidence from a Quasi-Experimental Initiative in Malawi," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 53-69.
    11. Conning, Jonathan H. & Robinson, James A., 2007. "Property rights and the political organization of agriculture," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 416-447, March.
    12. Marco Percoco, 2018. "Wealth inequality, redistribution and local development: The case of land reform in Italy," Environment and Planning C, , vol. 36(2), pages 181-200, March.
    13. Kurosaki, Takashi & 黒崎, 卓 & Parinduri, Rasyad & Paul, Saumik, 2016. "Evaluating Efficiency Gains from Tenancy Reform Targeting a Heterogeneous Group of Sharecroppers: Evidence from India," CEI Working Paper Series 2016-10, Center for Economic Institutions, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
    14. Jin, Songqing & Deininger, Klaus W. & Nagarajan, Hari K., 2006. "Equity and efficiency impacts of rural land rental restrictions: Evidence from India," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21305, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    15. Klaus W. Deininger & Songqing Jin & Vandana Yadav, 2011. "Long-term Effects of Land Reform on Human Capital Accumulation: Evidence from West Bengal," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2011-082, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    16. Gafaro, Margarita & Ibanez, Ana Maria & Zarruk, David, 2012. "Equidad y eficiencia rural en Colombia: una discusión de políticas para el acceso a la tierra," Documentos CEDE Series 146477, Universidad de Los Andes, Economics Department.
    17. J. Mark Ramseyer, 2015. "The Fable of Land Reform: Leases and Credit Markets in Occupied Japan," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(4), pages 934-957, October.
    18. Aragón, Fernando M. & Restuccia, Diego & Rud, Juan Pablo, 2022. "Are small farms really more productive than large farms?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 106(C).
    19. Falkinger, Josef & Grossmann, Volker, 2013. "Oligarchic land ownership, entrepreneurship, and economic development," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 206-215.
    20. Malcolm Keswell & Michael R. Carter, 2011. "Poverty and Land Distribution: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2011-046, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    inequality; land reform; household division; land markets;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:hbs:wpaper:14-066. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: HBS (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/harbsus.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.