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Traditional Institutions and Policy Reforms: A Review of RA4 Projects

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Baland and Guirkinger summarise the case studies research undertaken on the theme of family, gender and conflict. They conclude that several examples of traditional institutions, such as patriarchy or clan, caste or ethnic groups, are remarkably resilient. They argue that these institutions are ‘fundamental’ because they constitute the basis of social identity, and that policy reforms directly targeting these institutions, such as proclaiming gender equality as a constitutional right or prohibiting reference to ethnic identity, are rarely successful. Instead, addressing some of their negative expressions or consequences may prove more effective.

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