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Land Reform and Poverty in Kenya

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Name of the Asset | Land Reform and Poverty in Kenya
Type of Asset | Working Paper
Date | September 2009


Land is the foundation of Kenya’s development, as recognized by two recent highly publicized government documents. This paper studies how land tenure reform has impacted on poverty reduction, using the Kenya Integrated Household Budget Survey. It highlights many aspects of land reforms, but, due to data limitations, concentrates on land title reform in particular. It tests the hypothesis whether ownership of titled land affects household poverty, as represented by consumption expenditure while controlling for other household characteristics. The empirical results at national level provide strong evidence that the ownership of titled land is positively related with higher levels of household consumption expenditures, indicating that land reform must be part of the matrix of strategies to address poverty. Policy recommendations including initiating pro-poor land reform by hastening the pace of on-going title registrations.  


  • Joseph Kieyah
  • Robert K. Nyaga

Country and/or Region | Kenya
Name of the Program | Global Research Project on Institutional Capacity Strengthening of African Public Policy Institutes to Support Inclusive Growth and the MDGs
Funder(s) |  United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Bureau for Development Policy (BDP) and Regional Bureau for Africa (RBA)

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