Assessing the Impact of Second-Level Land Certification in Ethiopia

Published in: Annual World Bank Land and Poverty Conference

This paper presents the results of a USAID-funded impact evaluation of the Ethiopia Land Tenure Administration Program (ELTAP) and the Ethiopia Land Administration Program (ELAP). Utilizing panel data collected from 4,319 households in Ethiopia, the evaluation employed a Difference-in-Difference design coupled with matching to examine the impact of second-level certification relative to first-level certification across a range of household-level outcomes. The evaluation found small, positive, and potentially important impacts on household access to credit and on indicators of female empowerment. Little evidence for household impacts of second-level beyond first-level certification was found for indicators related to tenure security, land disputes, land rental activity, or soil and water conservation. The key findings of the evaluation presented in this paper contribute to the knowledge around the impacts of formal land documentation on household level development outcomes. Moreover, the critical analysis of the impacts and limitations of ELTAP and ELAP can contribute to enhanced programming during the Government of Ethiopia’s ongoing scale up of second-level land certification. Finally, the evaluation findings may inform the development of a national land use policy.

Key Words: Land certification; second-level; first level; Ethiopia; impact evaluation