© 2008

Foundations for Local Governance

Decentralization in Comparative Perspective

  • Fumihiko Saito

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-X
  2. Asoka Gunawardena, Weligamage D. Lakshman
    Pages 113-136
  3. Frederick Golooba-Mutebi
    Pages 137-164
  4. Purshottama Reddy, Brij Maharaj
    Pages 185-211
  5. Joseph R. A. Ayee
    Pages 233-258
  6. Kingsley Senyo Agomor, Minoru Obayashi
    Pages 259-276
  7. Fumihiko Saito
    Pages 277-286
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 287-301

About this book


Various forms of decentralization are recently pursued in the world, including developing countries. However, there has not been a coherent framework to access these intended outcomes generated by decentralization measures implemented in Asian and African countries. This book provides such a framework based on comparative analyses of different experiences of decentralization measures in six developing countries, where the policy rationale to “bring services closer to people” originated in different socio-political backgrounds. Although decentralization measures are potentially useful for attaining both political democratization and economic efficiency, what is often packaged under the umbrella of “decentralization” needs to be disaggregated analytically. Successful reforms need coherent approaches in which a range of stakeholders would become willing to share responsibilities and resources in order to achieve the ultimate outcome of poverty reduction in the developing countries.

"Securing more effective, equitable and democratic local governance processes is a key challenge for the 21st century. This volume is a lucid and thought-provoking examination of decentralization in the global south which has clear relevance for all those who are concerned with local democracy and governance world wide."
Bob Evans, Director, Sustainable Cities Research Institute
Northumbria University, Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK

"Essential reading for students of governance. The book's actor framework permits detailed analyses of the case study countries and reveals the dangers of prescribing decentralization as a quick fix to improve service delivery and local democracy."
David Hulme, Director, Chronic Poverty Research Centre
University of Manchester, UK



Local Government Reform decentralization developing countries development local governance participation

Editors and affiliations

  • Fumihiko Saito
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Intercultural CommunicationRyukoku UniversitySeta, OtsuJapan

Bibliographic information

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