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Politics and Economics of Land Reform in the Philippines: a survey

  • Fuwa, Nobuhiko

The Philippines has long been known for its high inequality in distribution of wealth and income; unlike many of its Asian neighbors characterized by relatively less inequality by international standards, the Philippine economy has often been compared to Latin American countries which are characterized by high inequality in land distribution. Partly due to its historically high inequality there has long been intermittent incidence of peasant unrest and rural insurgencies in the Philippines. As a result, the issue of land reform (or ‘agrarian reform’ as more commonly called in the Philippines, of which land reform constitutes the major part) has continuously been on political agenda at least since the early part of the 20th century; nevertheless land reform in the Philippines has been, and still is, an unfinished business. Against such a historical background, the main objective of this essay is to synthesize a broad range of existing literature on the various aspects of land reform policies in the Philippine context as relevant for today’s policy makers. The paper is meant as a stock taking exercise delineating what is known and what is not. We will pay attention to both political and economic issues arising from the land reform policies since both of these aspects are equally important for policy making. Furthermore, in our attempts to derive some lessons/implications for the current policy makers we will draw on both historical experiences in the Philippines and recent land reform experiences from other developing countries.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 23394.

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Date of creation: May 2000
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:23394
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  1. Rosenzweig, Mark R., 1988. "Labor markets in low-income countries," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Hollis Chenery & T.N. Srinivasan (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 15, pages 713-762 Elsevier.
  2. Strauss, John & Thomas, Duncan, 1995. "Human resources: Empirical modeling of household and family decisions," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Hollis Chenery & T.N. Srinivasan (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 34, pages 1883-2023 Elsevier.
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  4. Horowitz, Andrew W, 1993. "Time Paths of Land Reform: A Theoretical Model of Reform Dynamics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 1003-10, September.
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  7. Moene, Karl Ove, 1992. "Poverty and Landownership," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 52-64, March.
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  10. Feder, Gershon, 1985. "The relation between farm size and farm productivity : The role of family labor, supervision and credit constraints," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2-3), pages 297-313, August.
  11. Dani Rodrik, 1996. "Understanding Economic Policy Reform," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 9-41, March.
  12. Agnes R. Quisumbing, 2006. "Book Review," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55, pages 237-240.
  13. Deininger, Klaus, 1999. "Making negotiated land reform work : initial experience from Brazil, Colombia, and South Africa," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2040, The World Bank.
  14. Foster, Andrew D & Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1994. "A Test for Moral Hazard in the Labor Market: Contractual Arrangements, Effort, and Health," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(2), pages 213-27, May.
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  16. Fuwa, Nobuhiko, 1999. "An Analysis of Social Mobility in a Village Community: The Case of a Philippine Village," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 101-138, January.
  17. Abhijit Banerjee, 1999. "Land Reforms: Prospects and Strategies," Working papers 99-24, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  18. Strauss, John, 1986. "Does Better Nutrition Raise Farm Productivity?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(2), pages 297-320, April.
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