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2012-11-13 | Peer Reviewed

Trust, tenure insecurity, and land certification in rural Ethiopia

Köhlin, Gunnar, Mintewab Bezabih and Andrea Mannberg. 2011. “Trust, tenure insecurity, and land certification in rural Ethiopia.” Journal of Socio-Economics 40:6: 833-843.
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This paper assesses the impact of a landcertification program in Ethiopia on the level of interpersonal and institutional trust among households in the Amhara region. The landcertification program is designed to enhance landtenure security of farmers, by maintaining (egalitarian) status quo land distribution and equity concerns.

The major contribution of the analysis lies in the exogenous nature of the program which addresses the endogeneity problems that characterize related studies, assessing the impact of policy related variables on trust. The effects of the landcertification program on trust are identified both by the difference-in-difference approach and by non-parametrical analysis of average treatment effects. Overall trust is found to be enhanced by the certification program, with trust towards formal institutions being more responsive to the program than interpersonal trust. The major policy implication of the result is that trust could be invested on through policy changes regarding the economic betterment of societies