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Volume 6, 1-15, June 2003
ISSN 1438-7890
African Journal of Environmental Assessment and Management
Revue africaine de gestion et d’évaluation environnementales

Rural Poverty, Property Rights and Environmental Resource Management: Some Insights from Kenya


Jane Kabubo-Mariara

This paper examines the link between rural poverty, property rights, and environmental resource management using survey data collected from a semi-arid region in Kenya. We test the hypothesis that well specified property rights and participation in environmental conservation are not important determinants of household poverty. We employ the statistical probit framework to explain participation in environmental conservation, and the ordinary least squares regression methods to explain poverty. Our results show that well specified property rights and increased participation in environmental conservation would increase per capita expenditure, and therefore lower the level of poverty. Important policy lessons for poverty reduction include privatization of common property resources and improvements in education both formal and informal, which would facilitate changes in perceptions concerning conservation and thus encourage environmental conservation.
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