Decentralization Dilemma: Measuring the Degree and Evaluating the Outcomes
Though decentralization for past one and half decade or so has become the most favoured policy priority among the policy makers yet the countries around the world differ dramatically in the degree of decentralization that is accommodated. While diversity in degree of decentralization across the world is a fact yet there is no consensus in the empirical literature over the questions like ‘which country is more decentralized?’ This is because decentralization is defined and measured differently in different studies. In fact, a true assessment of the degree of decentralization in a country can be made only if a comprehensive approach is adopted and rather than trying to simplify the syndrome of characteristics into the single dimension of autonomy, interrelationships of various dimensions of decentralization are taken into account. Thus it is to be realized that there is no simple one dimensional, quantifiable index of degree of decentralization in a given country. As there is wide diversity in the studies on degree of decentralization so is the case with the literature on outcomes of it. Outcome varies not only because decentralization can appear in various forms and combinations across countries but also because different instruments may have very different effects in different ccircumstances. Thus arriving at the precise definition of decentralization and associating it with particular outcomes is neither possible nor desirable for the simple reason that generalization of any kind can create pitfalls that can obscure rather than clarify the facts. What is more important is the need for a strictly contextual yet comprehensive approach while going beyond the blunt measures like expenditure decentralization and taking politics and institutional arrangements of the specific case under investigation also into account.
|Date of creation:||26 Jul 2004|
|Date of revision:||Nov 2005|
|Publication status:||Published in Indian Journal of Political Science No. (1).Vol. ((2006): pp. 49-64|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Ludwigstraße 33, D-80539 Munich, Germany|
Web page: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Isabelle Joumard & Per Mathis Kongsrud, 2003.
"Fiscal Relations across Government Levels,"
OECD Economic Studies,
OECD Publishing, vol. 2003(1), pages 155-229.
- Fisman, Raymond & Gatti, Roberta, 2000.
"Decentralization and corruption - evidence across countries,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
2290, The World Bank.
- Fisman, Raymond & Gatti, Roberta, 2002. "Decentralization and corruption: evidence across countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 325-345, March.
- Ernesto Stein, 1999.
"Fiscal Decentralization and Government Size in Latin America,"
Journal of Applied Economics,
Universidad del CEMA, vol. 0, pages 357-391, November.
- Ernesto H. Stein, 1998. "Fiscal Decentralization and Government Size in Latin America," Research Department Publications 4112, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
- Ernesto H. Stein & Jorge M. Streb, 1998. "Fiscal Decentralization and Government Size in Latin America," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6436, Inter-American Development Bank.
- Michael Marlow, 1988. "Fiscal decentralization and government size," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 56(3), pages 259-269, March.
- Pablo Sanguinetti, 1994. "Intergovernmental transfers and public sector expenditures: a game-theoretic approach," Estudios de Economia, University of Chile, Department of Economics, vol. 21(2 Year 19), pages 179-212, December.
- Oates, Wallace E, 1985. "Searching for Leviathan: An Empirical Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 748-57, September.
- Seabright, Paul, 1996.
"Accountability and decentralisation in government: An incomplete contracts model,"
European Economic Review,
Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 61-89, January.
- Seabright, Paul, 1994. "Accountability and Decentralization in Government: An Incomplete Contracts Model," CEPR Discussion Papers 889, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Zhang, Tao & Zou, Heng-fu, 1998.
"Fiscal decentralization, public spending, and economic growth in China,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 221-240, February.
- Tao Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 2001. "Fiscal decentralization, public spending, and economic growth in China," CEMA Working Papers 58, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
- Tao Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 1996. "Fiscal decentralization, public spending, and economic growth in China," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1608, The World Bank.
- Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
- Meloche, Jean-Philippe & Vaillancourt, Francois & Yilmaz, Serdar, 2004. "Decentralization or fiscal autonomy ? What does really matter ? effects on growth and public sector size in European transition countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3254, The World Bank.
- Ebel, Robert D. & Yilmaz, Serdar, 2002. "On the measurement and impact of fiscal decentralization," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2809, The World Bank.
- Fiszbein, Ariel, 1997. "The Emergence of local capacity: Lessons from Colombia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(7), pages 1029-1043, July.
- Zhuravskaya Ekatherina, 2000.
"Incentives to Provide Local Public Goods: Fiscal Federalism, Russian Style,"
EERC Working Paper Series
99-15e, EERC Research Network, Russia and CIS.
- Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina V., 2000. "Incentives to provide local public goods: fiscal federalism, Russian style," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 337-368, June.
- Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2000. "Incentives to provide local public goods: fiscal federalism, Russian style," Working Papers w0001, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
- Akai, Nobuo & Sakata, Masayo, 2002. "Fiscal decentralization contributes to economic growth: evidence from state-level cross-section data for the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 93-108, July.
- Bird, Richard M., 1993. "Threading the Fiscal Labyrinth: Some Issues in Fiscal Decentralization," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 46(2), pages 207-27, June.
- Michael Nelson, 1986. "An empirical analysis of state and local tax structure in the context of the Leviathan model of government," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 49(3), pages 283-294, January.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:204. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.