To Have & To Hold
Continuity & Change in Property Rights
Institutions Governing Water Resources
Among the Meru of Tanzania & the
BaKgatla in Botswana; 1925-2000

By Ellen Carlsson
December 2003
Almqvist & Wiksell International
ISBN: 91-22-02032-2
288 pages, Illustrated, 6" x 8 "
$79.50 Paper Original

How institutional change comes about and its underlying factors are research questions at the heart of Economic History. Within this and other disciplines there is also a concurrent debate on how property rights institutions affect management and exploitation of natural resources. In this study these two great research issues have been brought down to the local setting in order to capture the processes of continuity and change in property rights institutions governing water resources in two Sub-Sahara African communities.

The aim is to increase empirical knowledge about existing property structures in this region. This is achieved through a reconstruction of how property rights institutions have developed and an identification of the motives determining their development. Property rights theory is scrutinized in search of an analytical framework to guide the empirical investigation and assist in offering an explanation for the findings. In the study economic issues are considered to be part of a larger social context and the investigation is focused on the informal as well as the formal institutional structure. This position has been imperative for the analysis of the African farmers relentless strategies of investing in social networks to attain economic security.

Economic History
Lund Studies in Economic History, No 28

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