September 19, 2011
Although increased global demand for land has led to renewed interest in African land tenure, few models to address these issues quickly and at the required scale have been identified or evaluated. The case of Rwanda’s nation-wide and relatively low-cost land tenure regularization program is thus of great interest.
A new working paper paper by the World Bank (Authors: Daniel Ayalew Ali, Klaus Deininger, and Markus Goldstein, August 2011) evaluates the short-term impact (some 2.5 years after completion) of the pilots undertaken to fine-tune the approach using a geographic discontinuity design with spatial fixed effects. Three key findings emerge from the analysis.
- First, the program improved land access for legally married women (about 76 percent of married couples) and prompted better recordation of inheritance rights without gender bias.
- Second, the analysis finds a very large impact on investment and maintenance of soil conservation measures. This effect was particularly pronounced for female headed households, suggesting that this group had suffered from high levels of tenure insecurity, which the program managed to reduce.
- Third, land market activity declined, allowing rejection of the hypothesis that the program caused a wave of distress sales or widespread landlessness by vulnerable people. Implications for program design and policy are also discussed.
Access the working paper here.
September 7, 2011
The right of women to inherit their deceased husbands is one that has faced great resistance from adherents of traditional customs and some religious sects in most African societies, and therefore requiring concerted efforts to bring about the needed change that will recognise women as equal partners in relationships, with inalienable right of succession in the event of their spouses predeceasing them.
The denial of women’s succession rights in recent times has been compounded in situations where a male spouse dies from HIV/AIDS. In Ghana, some communal societies pour scorn on the female spouse, often accusing her of being the one who had infected the deceased with the virus. The woman is usually, in circumstances as depicted, driven away with her children from their matrimonial home and dispossessed of all the properties that commonly belonged to the couple, rendering the woman and her children destitute. Read the rest of this entry »
June 13, 2011
Women’s property rights, especially access to land, are increasingly recognized as critical to achieving poverty reduction and gender equality. However, many women are unable to realize their rights.
ICRW’s research and programmatic work in gender and property rights aims to advance knowledge on how women’s and men’s property rights are measured and to strengthen community-based programs addressing women’s property rights. Through the Gender, Asset and Land Survey (GLAS) in Uganda and South Africa, ICRW and partners have gathered evidence on the spectrum of women’s property rights, including their ownership, use and control over land, housing and other assets. Through the Community-based Paralegal Program in Uganda, ICRW works with community-based legal aid organizations to develop their capacity in gender and in monitoring and improve their ability to protect women’s property rights.
ICRW will discuss the results of the first phases of these two projects. The discussion will include lessons from: piloting a new methodology to collect data on gendered property rights and key findings from Uganda and South Africa; evaluating a pilot community-based legal aid program as an approach to supporting women’s property rights; and recommending next steps for moving forward.
This is a brown bag seminar, with drinks and light snacks provided.
RSVP to Gwenn Hollingworth at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-742 -1236
- Krista Jacobs, Economist
- Meredith Saggers, Economist, Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist
Thu, 06/23/2011 – 12:30pm – 2:00pm
International Center for Research on Women
1120 20th Street N.W. Suite 500 North
Washington, DC 20036
January 10, 2011
MZUZU, Malawi, Dec 29 – Seated on a wooden bench at her Katoto township house in Mzuzu, Grace Mkandawire’s face reflects the traumatic experiences she has endured since her husband’s death in 1998. She looks lost and confused and as she narrates her story there is fear, hatred and resignation that Malawi’s Marital Property Law of (1882) disenfranchises poor women like her.
October 6, 2010
Tuesday 12 October, 13.00-14.30 – ODI, London
It is estimated that women worldwide own only 1-2% of individually titled land. This is despite making up more than 80% of farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa. Assets can be an important source of social mobility and in low income developing countries land is the key asset. It is the primary source of wealth, social status, and power and provides the basis for shelter, food, and economic activities. Conversely, limited access to and control of land can restrict livelihood opportunities; constrain coping strategies in the face of negative events and inhibit investments in human capital formation. So, although women are central figures in producing food, they can commonly only access land through their husbands, fathers, sons or brothers. Land is commonly obtained through inheritance but women are rarely allowed to inherit land. This matters because women’s lack of control of this key resource influences the power that women have within their household and in wider society, their ability to leverage credit to invest in agriculture or other livelihood activities and their vulnerability to downward mobility on separation, divorce or widowhood. This, in turn, has implications for women’s ability to invest in their children or pass on their wealth – with implications for the life-long incomes of the next generation. Read the rest of this entry »
October 6, 2010
UNIFEM (part of UN Women), with the generous contribution of the Canadian International Development Agency, today launches a Call for Proposals for the Fund for Women’s Property and Inheritance Rights in the Context of HIV/AIDS. The Fund will provide small, catalytic grants totaling US$700,000 in 2010 to grassroots and community-based organizations or networks in sub-Saharan Africa working to improve women’s access to property and inheritance rights within the context of HIV/AIDS. Read the rest of this entry »
August 31, 2010
Omidyar Network and Ashoka’s Changemakers invite you to join the movement to unleash individual opportunity through property rights. Secure rights to land can provide life-altering benefits to the poor, including economic opportunity, enhanced identity, and personal dignity. If you are a changemaker who is increasing access to property rights—for individuals or communities, in rural or urban areas, through non-profit or for-profit innovation—we want to hear from you.
We seek diverse approaches and groundbreaking models to strengthening property rights. From August 18 through November 3, 2010, you can nominate or submit a solution that helps to provide land to the landless, formalizes or documents property rights, or provides legal education to help people understand and benefit from the laws that protect their assets.
Prizes: Three winners will be selected; each will receive a cash prize of US $50,000.
April 28, 2010
Please join us this THURSDAY, April 29th, at 4pm to celebrate the introduction of the Global Resources for Women to Thrive (GROWTH) Act!
“The Power of Property Rights and Other Key Factors in Ending Poverty”
Thursday, April 29th 4 – 5pm U.S. Capitol Building Room HC-6
Speakers will include:
Conresswoman Nita M. Lowey; Ritu Sharma, Co-Founder and President, Women Thrive Worldwide; Lydia Sasu, Executive Director, Development Action Association (Ghana); Liz Blake, Senior Vice President, Habitat for Humanity International; Bowman Cutter, Chair of the Board, CARE
To view the complete invitation, please click here.
If you have not done so already, please RSVP to Michelle Mazzeo at email@example.com by 12pm on Wednesday, April 28th. Please note that we will be submitting a list of attendees to the Capitol prior to the event, so your name will need to be on this list in order to attend.