In the report launch event in Washington DC last year, we received suggestions to examine the literature of those who are skeptical or opposed to decentralization and to compile the evidence base that shows the advantages of decentralization to improved service delivery, reduced corruption and economic growth. We have organized a reference list of documents which show the impact of decentralization based on empirical studies. The list below shows “Article title” (author, year) and keywords with the link to download.
- “Power to the People: The Effects of Participatory Budgeting on Municipal Expenditures and Infant Mortality in Brazil” (Sónia Gonçalves, 2009): participatory budgeting/child mortality rate.
- “Decentralization in Argentina” (Nadir Habibi et al. 2001): fiscal decentralization/ educational output & infant mortality.
- “Do local officials know something we don’t? Decentralization of targeted transfers in Albania” (Harold Alderman. 2000): decentralization/ service delivery to target poorer communities
- “Province-Managing-County Reform and Public Education Spending: A Quasi-Natural Experiment of Fiscal Decentralization in China” (Wen Wang, Xinye Zheng, & Zhirong Jerry Zhao, 2012): Autonomous government & fiscal decentralization/ less spend on public education
- “Reaching Poor Areas in a Federal System” (Martin Ravallion, 1998): Federal anti-poverty program/ decentralization/ generating inequality
- “Decentralization and Corruption: New Cross-Country Evidence” (Maksym Ivanya &Anwar Shah, 2011) decentralization/reducing bribe
- “Fiscal Decentralization and Governance: A Cross Country Analysis” (Luiz de Mello & Matias Brenstein, 2001) corruption index/ decentralization index.
- “One Size Fits All”? Decentralization, Corruption, and the Monitoring of Bureaucrats” (Christian Lessmann & Gunther Markwardt, 2009) fiscal decentralization/ anti-corruption/ freedom of the press
- “Political Decentralization and Corruption: Evidence from around the World” (C.Simon Fan, Chen Lin, & Daniel Treisman, 2008) number of tiers of governments / bribe
- “Fiscal Decentralization and Macroeconomic Management” (Anwar Shah, 2006) fiscal decentralization/ fiscal performance indicators including GDP growth
- “Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth in China” (Justin Yifu Lin & Zhiqiang Liu, 2000) fiscal decentralization/ significant economic growth
- “Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Study” (Hamid Davoodi & Heng-fu Zou, 1998) fiscal decentralization/ economic growth in developing countries.
- “Fiscal Decentralization, Public Spending, and Economic Growth in China” (Tao Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 1996) fiscal decentralization/ lower provincial economic growth
*Reference: “The Impact of Decentralization on Service Delivery, Corruption, Fiscal Management and Growth in Developing and Emerging Market Economies: A Synthesis of Empirical Evidence” (Anwar Shah, Theresa Thompson, & Heng-Fu Zou, 2004)
Do you have any recommendations of resources? Please leave comments below so that we can update the list.