IZA DP No. 7907: Is Women's Ownership of Land a Panacea in Developing Countries? Evidence from Land-Owning Farm Households in Malawi
published in: Journal of Development Studies, 2016, 52(2), 242-253
Our analysis of a rich representative household survey for Malawi, where patrilineal and matrilineal institutions coexist, suggests that (a) in matrilineal societies the likelihood of cash crop cultivation by a household increases with the extent of land owned (or de facto controlled) by males, and (b) and cultivation of cash crops increases household welfare. The policy implication is that facilitating female ownership of assets through informal and formal institutions does not, on its own, increase welfare, if women do not have access to complementary resources that are needed to generate income from those assets.