Six million SEK to research on local democracy

ICLD has approved six new research proposals for funding. The research projects, all of which will investigate questions especially relevant to supporting democratic participation at the local level, were awarded up to 1 million SEK each. The projects are preparing to start in spring 2020.

ICLD received a total of 129 applications in response to its summer 2019 call for policy relevant research pertaining to local democracy. The applications were reviewed internally at ICLD for quality and fit with ICLD goals, and those that best met these criteria were ranked by external reviewers who serve in the ICLD’s scientific Advisory Group. All projects relate to one or more of ICLD’s core areas (equity/inclusion, transparency, accountability and citizen participation). The research will focus on problems and opportunities where there is a potential to generate policies that can increase the influence of vulnerable people in local decision-making. The projects will be conducted in Kenya, Lebanon, North Macedonia, South Africa, Ukraine and Zimbabwe.

“With this grant we will be able to study how different categories of vulnerability, and the physical, cultural, political and socioeconomic environment converge to influence inclusion and participation in local democracy.“ Says Bernard Chazovachii from Great Zimbabwe University, one of the team members in the research project “Interrogating the inclusion and participation of vulnerable groups in Zimbabwe’s local democracy”

Another project that is receiveing the grant is studying policital will and anti-corruption in Ukraine.

Institutional change requires political will. But what is political will, and where does it come from?
The research project “Opening the black box of political will: Local public authorities and anti-corruption efforts in Ukraine” lead by Marcia Grimes from University of Gothenburg want to answer these questions with their research project. The project focuses on local communication strategies and actor constellation as key elements to develop political will, and examines these dynamics in the context of Ukraine.

Read more about all the six projects that are being funded here:

Through inclusion and transparency, to equity and quality. Improvement of the local budget processes in North Macedonia 
Main applicant: Dragan Tevdovski, Co-founder of ZMAI (Association of Young Analysts and Researchers) and professor at the Faculty of Economics, Ss. Cyril and Methodious University, Skopje

Morality Policies and the Prospect for Inclusive Citizenship in Decentralized Indonesia: A Study of West Java 
Main applicant: Wawan Mas’udi, Senior Lecturer, Vice Dean of Academic and Student Affairs, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences (FISIPOL), Universitas Gadjah Mada

Opening the black box of political will: Local public authorities and anti-corruption efforts in Ukraine 
Main applicant: Marcia Grimes, Senior Lecturer, Department of Political Science, University of Gothenburg

Interrogating the inclusion and participation of vulnerable groups in Zimbabwe’s local democracy 
Main applicant: Bernard Chazovachii, Acting Dean of the School of Social Sciences, Great Zimbabwe University

Whose voice matters for what? Local government inclusion and social accountability in post-conflict contexts 
Main applicant: Hanna Leonardsson, Assistant researcher, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg

Mobilising Assets to Bridge the Accountability Gap: Applying asset-based and citizen-led development for social accountability and inclusive governance in Emfuleni, South Africa 
Main applicant: Hanna Nel, Professor, University of Johannesburg

ICLD and research

ICLD supports research on local democracy, decentralization and local self-government in international development cooperation. The Knowledge Centre funds research projects, organizes workshops and provides arenas for researchers to actively engage in dialogue with local politicians and civil servants part of ICLD training programs and partnerships.