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Is Collective Titling Enough to Protect Forests? Evidence from Afro-descendant Communities in the Colombian Pacific Region Artículo uri icon


  • During the mid-1990s, one of the most ambitious land reforms in recent decades took place in Colombia. The reform recognized collective land rights of almost 6 million hectares to Afro-Colombian communities, with the dual goals of improving livelihoods and preserving valuable ecosystems. We estimate the impact of this collective land titling program on forest cover using panel data and a difference-in-difference empirical strategy. We find that overall, collective titling significantly reduces deforestation rates, but the effect varies substantially by sub-region. We observe that the larger effects are in Nariño and Valle del Cauca. Our qualitative analysis suggest that this might be the result of local community-based organization defining the rules for community use of natural resources and the expulsion of private companies dedicated to timber exploitation and oil palm plantations. We conclude that under the adequate conditions, collective titling can lead to forest conservation.

fecha de publicación

  • 2020