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FRIHUMSAM-Fri hum og sam

Joint Land Certification and Household Land Allocation: - Towards Empowerment or Marginalization?

Awarded: NOK 2.8 mill.


The study area is two regions (Oromya and SNNP) in Southern Ethiopia where joint land certificates to husbands and wives have been issued since 2005 based on new land laws that were enacted from 2004. Women traditionally have a weak position in this part of Ethiopia and have been considered the property of men, as evidenced by a widow being required to remarry the brother of her late husband. The step from being mere property to becoming equal owner can therefore be long and tough. The research project be nefits from the project leader having carried out a unique baseline study of the land certification process in Southern Ethiopia with special emphasis on women's position in 2007 when its implementation was under way (Holden and Tefera, 2008a, b). This su rvey covered 615 households (15% are polygamous) and this new project aims to resurvey the same households. The first survey included separate interviews of all husbands and wives and the new project aims to repeat this exercise to get good data on the ch anges that have taken place from 2007 to 2012. This should be a long enough period to start to see significant impacts of the reforms. The individual data collection includes questions to assess the participation and decision-power of men and women in lan d-related issues, knowledge of the law, perceptions, opinions and experience questions such as experiences of land-related disputes. In addition a bargaining game experiment will be used to assess how far apart independent and joint decisions of husbands and wives turn out and to compare this with their real life decisions. Another experiment will be used to assess whether there is an 'endowment effect' causing men to value the land more than their wives and therefore being unwilling to give it up. Key in formants such as local conflict mediators will be used assess the extent of within family disputes and the legal support provided to handle such disputes.

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FRIHUMSAM-Fri hum og sam