Issues in the Design of Decentralisation

Mark Turner

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paper


How can the design of decentralisation programmes be improved? This study published by the Australian National University argues that good decentralisation design processes that address fundamental questions and are fully aware of political realities can lead to developmental gains. Although the initial design is very important, it is only the first step in the process of decentralisation and the promotion of good governance at the local level.
Decentralisation is a development strategy that has gained universal popularity in recent years. In principle, it allows democratisation and enhanced participation of citizens in making decisions that affect their lives. Decentralisation can be equated with human rights. It can also be useful for creating and maintaining political stability. Decentralisation is promoted on technical efficiency grounds. Local government is seen to possess managerial and economic advantages in providing the services people need and want in an efficient and responsive manner. Decentralisation is often linked to the notion of good governance involving efficient public sector management, an effective system of accountability, the rule of law, and improved availability of information and transparency in decision-making.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCanberra, Australia
PublisherANU E Press
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)1328-7854
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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