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2018-06-08 | Peer Reviewed

Is the War on Drugs Working? Examining the Colombian Case Using Micro Data

Ibanez, Marcela and Stephan Klassen. 2017. “Is the War on Drugs Working? Examining the Colombian Case Using Micro Data.” The Journal of Development Studies 53: 1650-1662.
Download reference Doi:https://doi.org/10.1080/00220388.2016.1241386

The intense debate on the effectiveness of the war on drugs contrasts with the scarce quantitative evidence on its impacts on drug cultivation decisions by individual producers. Using panel data from an original survey of farmers living in coca-growing areas in Colombia, we evaluate the effectiveness of forced eradication policies implemented between 2000 and 2005. We find that one additional hectare eradicated decreases coca supply by 0.44 hectares, indicating that coca can only be eradicated at a very high cost. This suggests that alternative approaches are needed to reduce coca production.