Property rights and the mystery of capital: A review of de Soto’s simplistic solution to development

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

De Soto argues that formally establishing individually titled property rights releases value that can assist the poor in lower income countries. I argue Soto’s treatment of property rights is overly narrow, legalistic and individualistic. Second, effective property rights do not exist outside other formal and informal institutions. Third, there is no necessary conflict between informal, traditional and communal rights and economic development. Fourth, evidence suggests establishing individual property rights can harm the poor in some cases. Fifth, studies suggest establishing title does not increase access to credit for the poor. Finally, de Soto’s notion of ‘dead capital’ is questioned.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-96
Number of pages10
JournalProgress in Development Studies
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • capital
  • de Soto
  • economic development
  • institutions
  • low-income countries
  • property rights

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Property rights and the mystery of capital: A review of de Soto’s simplistic solution to development'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this