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Impact of Land Reform Strategies on Rural Poverty in the Commonwealth of Independent States

Comparison between Georgia and Moldova

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Kerstin Kötschau

This study aimed at analysing the impact of two different land reform strategies on rural poverty in CIS countries, particularly in Georgia and Moldova. While Georgia distributed agricultural land parcels directly to the population at the beginning of the 1990ies, Moldova transferred land via paper shares for undemarcated land parcels. This study is based on household data, which were collected during household surveys in Georgia and Moldova in 2007 and 2008. The data had been used in order to analyse the impact of land reform on the endowment with land and other capital, the use of capital and the access to markets and credits as well as the importance of agricultural employment for rural households. A logit analysis had been run in order to detect the determinants of poverty.

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Acknowledgement

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I would like to express my gratitude to all those who supported me over the years and gave me the possibility to complete this thesis. First, I want to thank Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. P. Michael Schmitz who gave me the opportunity to even write this thesis. I learned a lot from him over the years and I am thankful for his supervision and support. I furthermore want to thank Prof. Dr. E.-A. Nuppenau for the interest he showed in my work and his willingness to be available as second referee. This thesis could not have been written without the results of the household surveys carried out in Georgia and Moldova. I want to express my gratitude to all household members who were willing to participate in the survey as well the mayors of the villages who answered all my questions. I want to thank the Volkswagen Foundation for the financial support for the surveys in the two countries. I furthermore would like to express my special gratitute to Mircea Snegur, the first president of Moldova. He provided me with first-hand infor- mation about the land reform process at the beginning of the 1990s and strongly supported me before and during the household survey in Moldova in 2008. He and Sergej Muravschi helped me identifying the project villages and made it possible for me to talk to the mayors and get access to the necessary information about the villages. Spezial thanks to Ion Gore, who helped me to organise the...

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