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Public Service Delivery

Age sets and accountability

Abstract: This document is the second of two progress reports that provide an overview of the progress made on the DFID RA4 project “Social structures, political accountability, and effective public goods provision.” Our study is interested in better understanding how…

Recruitment, effort, and retention effects of performance contracts for civil servants: Experimental evidence from Rwandan primary schools

Abstract: This paper reports on a two-tiered experiment designed to separately identify the selection and effort margins of pay-for-performance (P4P). At the recruitment stage, teacher labor markets were randomly assigned to a pay-for-percentile or fixed-wage contract. Once recruits were placed,…

Promoting accountability in public projects: donors, audits, and rural electrification

Abstract: International donors and governments require contracting mechanisms that provide accountability in order to mitigate leakage and corruption in public infrastructure projects, especially when construction is outsourced to private sector contractors. This is an important goal because low-income countries spend…

Gang rule: understanding and countering criminal governance

Abstract: Gangs govern millions worldwide. Why rule, and how do they respond to states? Many argue that criminal rule provides protection when states do not, and that increasing state services could crowd gangs out. We began by interviewing leaders from…

Can training improve organisational culture?

Experimental evidence from Ghana’s civil service Abstract: Organizational culture is an important driver of organizational performance, but evidence on how to improve performance-oriented organizational cultures is scarce – especially in the public sector. We partnered with Ghana’s Civil Service to…

Mozambique Institutional Diagnostic: Chapter 7

Mozambique Institutional Diagnostic Chapter 7: Health, development, and institutional factors The Mozambique case Abstract: The central aim of this text is to show the impact institutions have on the performance of the health sector in Mozambique. The text shows that…

Thematic Insight: Motivating and monitoring public service provision

The ability to recruit, elicit effort from, and retain civil servants is a central issue for any government. Poor performance of frontline civil servants (e.g., teachers, health workers, tax collectors) suggests that governments need to find and deploy more effective…

Bangladesh Institutional Diagnostic – Chapter 8

Bangladesh Institutional Diagnostic Chapter 8: Institutional challenges in public spending: the case of primary education Chapter overview: List of figures Introduction The importance of education (primary education) for development in Bangladesh The primary education sector in Bangladesh: basic performance Challenges…

Financial Incentives in Multi-Layered Organisations: Sierra Leone

Empirical Evidence from the Community Health Worker Program in Sierra Leone Authors:  Erika Deserranno, Northwestern University, and Philipp Kastrau and Gianmarco León-Ciliotta, Universitat Pompeu Fabra Introduction:  Poor performance of frontline service providers (e.g., teachers, health workers, tax collectors) has generated…

The Quran and the Sword – the Strategic Game between Autocratic Power, the Military And the Clerics

This paper elucidates the willingness of an autocrat to push through institutional reforms in a context where traditional authorities represented by religious clerics are averse to them and where the military, who have their own preferences about reforms, control the…

Innovation, Voice and Hierarchy in the Public Sector: Evidence from Ghana’s Civil Service

Abstract: Research on innovation in government often focuses on ideas introduced by senior leaders or managers, but ideas from public servants themselves are an important and underexplored channel for improving performance in government bureaucracies. We provide new evidence on the…

Research Insight: Candidate Selection and Accountability in Sierra Leone

This EDI Research Insight publishes early stage results from a study designed to explore questions about  representation, accountability and performance among government officials in Sierra Leone. As in many developing countries, in Sierra Leone the process of selecting candidates often…

Event: “Sharing Solutions” – Improving management and accountability for public service delivery

Charity Moore from the Harvard Kennedy School presents research from a project on “USing digital trails to improve management and accountability for public service delivery in India.” Service delivery in development settings in hierarchical in nature, which can lead to…

Event: “Sharing Solutions” – Recruitment, effort and retention effects of performance contracts

Andrew Zeitlin from Georgetown University presents his research on the compositional consequences of performance pay in the education sector in Rwanda. H notes that in developing country education there is tremendous variation in teacher quality and internationally, these differences have…

Event: “Sharing Solutions” – Performance-based incentives in multi-layered organizations

Gianmarco León on pay-for-performance (P4P), which has been shown to be effective in job performance in both private and public organizations. The research examines how incentives affect performance when they are implemented across multiple layers of an organization – from…

Event: “Sharing Solutions” – Political economy and governance of rural electrification

Edward Miguel of the University of California at Berkeley presents research on “The political economy and governance of rural electrification in Kenya.” In the last few years it has become a major policy and foreign aid priority to enhance the…

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic – Synthesis

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic Chapter 8: Synthesis This chapter provides a synthesis of information and arguments developed in the first seven chapters of the Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic. Chapter outline Part 1.  The basic institutional constraints on Tanzanian development The main challenges…

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic – Chapter 5

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic Chapter 5: Decentralization and development Chapter outline Introduction The theory of central–local government relationships The evolution of local government in Tanzania Local and central governance in Tanzania today: a complex and confusing legal framework Fiscal decentralisation: the…

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic – Chapter 1

Tanzania Institutional Diagnostic Chapter 1: Reflections on the political and economic development of Tanzania Chapter outline A short account of the political history of Tanzania The colonial era The German colonisation The British mandate on Tanganyika Independence Forging a nation: the…

Improving management and accountability for public service delivery

“Using digital trails to improve management and accountability for public service delivery (India)” A presentation by Charity Moore, Harvard Kennedy School This presentation was part of the convening event hosted by CEGA at the University of California, Berkeley, in August…

Clientelistic politics and economic development – an overview

This paper provides an overview of the literature on political clientelism  and its relation to economic development. It starts by describing the range of mechanisms used by political operatives to monitor how specific voters vote in order to target clientelistic…

At the Intersection: A Review of Institutions in Economic Development

We present accepted basic arguments on the role of institutions in development and then discuss the corresponding empirical evidence in support (or not) of those arguments. Methodologically, our emphasis is on experimental evidence wherever available, and thematically we focus on…

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