Title Regularization Study

This major study reports on a survey and evaluation of the Community Resources Group regularization program in several colonias outside of Rio Grande City, Starr County, Texas. The regularization—the cleaning of land titles—was mandated to the CRG by the Texas State Legislature and was undertaken 1996-2003. It is one of the few examples of a land regularization program in the USA (unlike Latin American where it is very common). The evaluation was undertaken by several researchers from three universities, and was led by Professor Peter M. Ward at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, The University of Texas at Austin, and was completed in 2002. 

There were two principal goals of the evaluation: 1) to offer an evaluation of the CRG program itself—the strategy, implementation, efficiency, results, etc; and 2) to research the impact of the land regularization program itself—specifically whether it shaped settlement upgrading; dwelling improvements; social organization; access to formal credit, etc. 

Two principal databases are made public here (in Excel, Stata and SPSS, edited to remove identifying information): 1) The CRGs archive database and inventory of lots that were subject to regularization; and 2) A randomly selected household survey that was applied to: i) a sample of lots across several colonias that were affected by regularization; and ii) another sample of households that did not require significant attention which acted as a sort of ‘control’ population.

Focus groups were also conducted with a number of the residents who had not fallen within the survey, and verbatim record of those meetings is provided. 

Examples of the Questionnaire, Coding Guide and Protocols are included that may be used to independently analyze the data and for verifications of the findings. Several publications from the Texas Study are included here, along with other colonia studies and publications that may be of interest. The Final Report (pdf) may be found under the link of that name. 

This final report also contains copies of the protocols and references, etc.

The databases are for the (Public) Land Study and are presented both in Excel and SPSS. (You will need SPSS on your machine to access it). See the Coding Guides and Questionnaire sections below.


CRG Database:

The questionnaire here is in English, but was actually in Spanish and English (odd and even sides). It was almost exclusively applied in Spanish. 

Verbatim transcripts of the focus groups. The color coding relates to subject areas indicated. Focus group discussions were transcribed in English from the tapes.

Several major publications have come out of the study and Report. See the publications section for details.