China’s Sloping Land Conversion Program: Does Expansion Equal Success?

Jintao Xu, Ran Tao, Zhigang Xu and Michael T. Bennett


This paper uses a 2003 household survey to examine implementation and impacts of China’s Sloping Land Conversion Program. We find that land targeting has been strongly influenced by program goals, but that mistargeting also occurred. Using a treatment effects approach to evaluate program impact, we find evidence of positive impact on cropping, husbandry, and total income, though the results are not robust enough to support government claims of huge gains. We also find evidence that lack of participant choice could be dampening program impacts, and that allowing households autonomy could lead to improvement in program cost-effectiveness and outcomes. (JEL Q28, Q57)

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