Social Networks in Ghana

36 Pages Posted: 7 Jun 2004

See all articles by Christopher Udry

Christopher Udry

Northwestern University

Timothy G. Conley

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business

Date Written: May 2004


In this chapter we examine social networks among farmers in a developing country. We use detailed data on economic activities and social interactions between people living in four study villages in Ghana. It is clear that economic development in this region is being shaped by the networks of information, capital and influence that permeate these communities. This chapter explores the determinants of these important economic networks. We first describe the patterns of information, capital, labor and land transaction connections that are apparent in these villages. We then discuss the interconnections between the various economic networks. We relate the functional economic networks to more fundamental social relationships between people in a reduced form analysis. Finally, we propose an equilibrium model of multi-dimensional network formation that can provide a foundation for further data collection and empirical research.

Keywords: Endogenous Networks, Informal Credit, Social Learning

JEL Classification: O12, D85

Suggested Citation

Udry, Christopher and Conley, Timothy G., Social Networks in Ghana (May 2004). Yale University Economic Growth Center Discussion Paper No. 888. Available at SSRN:

Christopher Udry (Contact Author)

Northwestern University ( email )

2001 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

Timothy G. Conley

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-7281 (Phone)

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