Evidence from Ghana shows that policy reforms on land titling and land rights have implications beyond their impact on agricultural productivity

Customary norms are widespread in Africa today. Eliana La Ferrara looks at how the presence of customary law alongside modern law affects the choices that individuals make. Specifically, she analyses the effects of an inheritance reform passed in Ghana in 1985, through which it was mandated that a portion of a father’s property is inherited by his own children. This policy reform contributed to a reduction in education for the ethnic group, the Akan, where children had previously inherited land through their maternal uncle.

Ghana Inheritance Customary norms Customary law Education Years of schooling Land rights Land titling