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Tenure diversity and dependent causation in the effects of regional integration on land use: evaluating the evolutionary theory of land rights in Acre, Brazil

Perz, Stephen G., Hoelle, Jeffrey, Rocha, Karla, Passos, Veronica, Leite, Flavia, Cortes, Julia, Araujo Carvalho, Lucas, Barnes, Grenville
Journal of land use science 2017 v.12 no.4 pp. 231-251
cattle, infrastructure, land rights, land tenure, land use, multivariate analysis, pastures, private lands, property rights, Brazil
In the complex causation behind land change, dependent causation can play a central role. A case in point concerns land tenure diversity, where contrasting use rules for different lands may affect the impacts of other drivers on land use outcomes. We therefore evaluate the evolutionary theory of land rights (ETLR), which assumes homogeneous private property rights, in order to test for dependent causation due to distinct use rules among various types of private lands. In the present analysis, we focus on whether land tenure type modifies the effects of highway infrastructure on key outcomes highlighted in the ETLR framework. We take up the case of rural settlements along the Inter-Oceanic Highway in the eastern part of the Brazilian state of Acre, where there is considerable land tenure diversity. Findings from multivariate models for land titling, the castanha nut harvest, and cattle pasture all indicate that the effects of infrastructure depend on land tenure type. These results confirm the importance of dependent causation behind land use and bear implications for theory on land change, infrastructure impacts, and land system science.