This paper seeks to understand the relationship between the provision of public infrastructure and the demand for formal property rights in the unplanned urban settlements of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We analyze take-up patterns in two adjacent settlements where residents were offered the opportunity to purchase formal land titles at subsidized prices. Detailed plans for proposed infrastructure investments were drawn up for both settlements, but these infrastructure investments were only implemented in one of the two locations. We exploit this quasi-experiment to show that proximity to actual, but not hypothetical, infrastructure investment significantly increases demand for property rights, and this effect appears to be driven by both increased property values and a dramatically-higher perceived risk of expropriation.
Collin, M.; Dercon, S.; Lombardini, S.; Sandefur, J.; Zeitlin, A. Slum-Upgrading in Tanzania: Public Infrastructure and Private Property Rights (IGC Working Paper). International Growth Centre (IGC), London, UK (2012) 22 pp.