Ogutu & Owambla (2020). Child influence in local governments

This policy brief is based on the key lessons derived from a case study investigating how local governments can create conditions for child influence in decision making processes.

The study was conducted by Christopher Owambla and Cornel Ogutu in 2019 who looked at municipal partnerships i three countries: Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. It is hoped that the lessons that emerged can contribute to partnerships and project activities within the theme of child inclusion in local governments.

The study recommends local governments taking steps to promote child participation and shift from tokenism to genuine child participation. Municipalities should also develop specific policy and legal frameworks to strengthen child participation. Child-led forums and platforms for child participation are also proposed to ensure children are in the forefront in decision making processes.

Faurskov, Hansson, Likhovtseva, Satybaldina & Zamaraeva (2019). Engagement of people with functional variation in the urban planning processes in Russia and Sweden

The inclusion of all people in local political and urban planning decision-making is one of the foundations of local democracy. This briefing paper examines a simple transferable methodology for assessing the usability of our city spaces for persons with functional variation. The focus is on the everyday experiences as people use the city in their normal lives. The research is based on three case studies in Sweden and Russia – but in principle the same methodology could be used in other municipalities and country contexts. By direct observation of city spaces and working directly with persons with functional variation, we can gain insight into how well our efforts to make our cities accessible for all are working.

In English

In Russian

Barinaga, Oloko, Ruddick & Zapata Campos (2019). Community Currencies as means of Local Economic Empowerment

Community currencies have emerged as a tool for building more inclusive local economic development and governance. Grassroots organisations in Nairobi and Mombasa (Kenya) have been experimenting with this form of local monies.

Communities in informal settlements in Kisumu have shown interest in introducing their own community currency. Challenges remain concerning the best diffusion strategy of such grassroots monetary innovations among communities and local governments. 

This policy brief focuses on how to involve residents, civil society, small entrepreneurs as well as local government officers and politicians so as to increase local representation and participation in this grassroots innovation.

Björkdahl &Somun-Krupalija (2018). A toolbox for Local Governments to implement SDG#5 on Gender Equality

This policy brief summarizes the findings from our investigation into SDG#5, and the efforts to turn this global goal into local policies and practice in Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH).

It offers a toolbox for Local Governments to implement SDG#5 on Gender Equality.

The toolbox in English

The toolbox in French

The toolbox in Serbian

The toolbox in Bosnian

The toolbox in Croatian

Read the whole research reportGlobal talk-Lokal walk, SDG#5 on Gender Equality.

Cheema (2018). Access to Urban Services for Inclusive Development in Asia

Rapid urban growth has not benefited all residents equally, leading to an “urban divide”. The poor are left to bear most of the burdens and shortcomings particularly in terms of access to services. Despite its contribution to economic development, urbanization has led to an increasing incidence of urban poverty and inequity, deteriorating quality of the urban environment, unplanned growth of peri-urban areas and deficiencies in access to basic urban services, including water supply and sanitation, urban shelter, waste management, energy, transport and health.

Urban poverty is mired in crime and violence, congestion, and exposure to pollution,and often a lack of familiar social and community networks. Rapid urban growth has not benefited all residents equally, leading to an “urban divide”. A typical slum household suffers from several deprivations including lack of access to improved water and sanitation, insecure land tenure, unreliable power supply and intermittent water availability, insufficient treatment of wastewater, poor drainage and flooding, and uncollected garbage.

To the research project

Ribot (2018). Choisir la démocratie : la gestion des ressources naturelles pour les décideurs, bailleurs de fonds, et agents de terrain

Appuyer la démocratie locale pour la gestion des forêts est essentiel à l’amélioration du bien-être des populations. Les autorités forestières au niveau national recrutent souvent des experts qui ne rendent pas compte aux populations vivant en zone forestière. Beaucoup de décisions relatives aux forêts devraient être prises au niveau local. Cette note d’orientation politique propose des moyens d’améliorer la démocratie représentative au niveau local, pour la bonne gouvernance forestière.

Ribot (2017). Choosing Democracy: Natural Resource Management for Environmental Policy Makers, Donors and Practitioners

Supporting local democracy in forestry is crucial for enhancing local people’s wellbeing. Most public decisions in forestry remain centralized. Forestry authorities on the national level often hire experts who are not accountable to the to the local people living in and around the forests. Many decisions related to forests should be transferred to the local level. This policy brief focuses on how to structure the local democratic representation in forestry governance.

Read the full policy brief.

Cornell & D’Arcy (2014). Proceedings of the Workshop: Workshop on Devolution and Local Development in Kenya

On June 26 2014, a workshop was held on devolution and local development at the Nairobi Safari Club in Nairobi, Kenya, to discuss the historic devolution reforms one year after their implementation. The workshop was organised by Agnes Cornell, Aarhus University, and Michelle D’Arcy, Trinity College Dublin, with funding from the Swedish International Centre for Local Democracy and in partnership with the Institute for Development Studies at the University of Nairobi.

The workshop was attended by 58 participants from a wide range of backgrounds: civil society; academia; county administration and assemblies; and the donor community.

The objective of the workshop was to provide an opportunity for academics, politicians and policy practitioners to reflect on the progress made and the challenges that remain in terms of devolution in Kenya. This publication contains the papers presented at the workshop, which were grouped around a number of key themes:

  • devolution one year on;
  • devolution and governance;
  • devolution and development;
  • devolution from theory to practise.

Together these papers provide a unique insight into the experiences of devolution from both those working within and alongside the devolved institutions.

Full policy brief

Dellnäs, Jörgensen & Öjendal, (2011). Proceedings of the Workshop: State of the Art of Local Governance – Challenges for the Next Decade

Skriften är ett resultat av en konferens som arrangerades av ICLD i Visby 29-30 april 2010. Konferensen samlade akademiker och beslutsfattare inom området lokal demokrati och lokal styrning för diskussioner på temat ”State of the Art of Local Governance – Challenges for the Next Decade”.

Konferensen hade två syften:

  • dels att summera resultat och insikter från de senaste decenniernas försök att stärka den lokala demokratin;
  • dels att försöka utröna vilka utmaningarna och de avgörande policy-frågorna kommer att vara under det kommande årtiondet.

Ambitionen var att tillhandahålla ett forum där avståndet mellan forskning, policy och praktiska erfarenheter kunde minskas.

Full policy brief