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Access to piped water is highly unequal in Mexico, and indigenous municipalities are particularly disadvantaged. The present article identifies the different factors that contribute to the unequal access to piped water across Mexican municipalities for the period 2000–2005, using regression analyses. The findings show that indigenous populations experience lower piped water coverage than non-indigenous populations, even when one accounts for population density (the main explanation that the government provides for indigenous populations’ lack of progress) and other relevant factors. The present findings also show that one of the reasons for this lack of progress is that indigenous municipalities receive fewer per capita transfers from the central government non-indigenous municipalities, all else being equal.

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