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East Asia Decentralizes : Making Local Government Work

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  • World Bank

Abstract

The past two decades have witnessed a fundamental transformation in the structure of government across East Asia. Prior to 1990 most East Asian countries were highly centralized; today, decentralization is ubiquitous throughout the region. From China to Thailand, sub-national governments are now responsible for the delivery of critical services and account for a significant proportion of total public expenditure. In just two decades, local and regional authorities have emerged as the organizational fulcrum on which much of the weight of development now falls. This report is the first attempt to look systematically at this phenomenon throughout East Asia. It is broken into four main sections. Chapters 1 and 2 provide an overview of the intergovernmental structures and frameworks that have emerged thus far, assess the status of the decentralization process, and identify key reform challenges for the future. Chapters 3-7 examine various dimensions of local and intergovernmental finance: sub-national borrowing; local revenues; public expenditure management; and the impact of the process on inter-regional equity and poverty reduction. The management of human resources is also covered here. Chapters 8-10 focus on the impact of decentralization on investment and service-delivery in three key sectors: health, education, and basic infrastructure. The final two chapters (11-12) look at issues connected with local accountability and community driven development.

Suggested Citation

  • World Bank, 2005. "East Asia Decentralizes : Making Local Government Work," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 7492, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbpubs:7492
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. World Bank, 2004. "Decentralization in the Philippines : Stgrengthening Local Government Financing and Resource Management in the Short Term," World Bank Other Operational Studies 14412, The World Bank.
    2. Lorena ViƱuela, 2014. "Trends and Quality of Decentralized Public Investment," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper1407, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
    3. Joseph J. Capuno, 2010. "Leadership and Innovation under Decentralization : A Case Study of Selected Local Governments in the Philippines," UP School of Economics Discussion Papers 201010, University of the Philippines School of Economics.
    4. Herbert Werlin, 2012. "Governance or Democracy," Challenge, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 55(1), pages 86-113.
    5. Indermit Gill & Homi Kharas, 2007. "An East Asian Renaissance : Ideas for Economic Growth," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6798, September.
    6. Kent Eaton & Kai Kaiser & Paul J. Smoke, 2011. "The Political Economy of Decentralization Reforms : Implications for Aid Effectiveness," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2336, September.
    7. Thulstrup, Andreas Waaben, 2015. "Livelihood Resilience and Adaptive Capacity: Tracing Changes in Household Access to Capital in Central Vietnam," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 352-362.
    8. Smoke, Paul, 2016. "Looking Beyond Conventional Intergovernmental Fiscal Frameworks: Principles, Realities, and Neglected Issues," ADBI Working Papers 606, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    9. Tao Kong, 2007. "A Selective Review of Recent Developments in the Economic Growth Literature," Asian-Pacific Economic Literature, Asia Pacific School of Economics and Government, The Australian National University, vol. 21(1), pages 1-33, May.
    10. Miral, Romulo Jr. E.M., 2017. "Federalism: Prospects for the Philippines," Discussion Papers DP 2017-29, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
    11. David Butterworth, 2010. "Expanding State, Expectant Citizens : Local Perspectives on Government Responsibility in Timor-Leste," World Bank Other Operational Studies 10940, The World Bank.
    12. Joseph J. Capuno & Maria Melody S. Garcia, 2009. "What difference can performance ratings make? Difference-in-difference estimates of impact on local government responsiveness in the Philippines," UP School of Economics Discussion Papers 200908, University of the Philippines School of Economics.
    13. World Bank, 2007. "China : Improving Rural Public Finance for the Harmonious Society," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7664, The World Bank.
    14. Muhammad Hussain Malik, 2008. "Fiscal decentralization for poverty reduction in Asia: opportunities, challenges and policy issues," Asia-Pacific Development Journal, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), vol. 15(2), pages 13-33, December.

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