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You searched for: Content Type Commentary and Analysis Remove constraint Content Type: Commentary and Analysis Publishing Institution Urban Institute Remove constraint Publishing Institution: Urban Institute Publication Year within 10 Years Remove constraint Publication Year: within 10 Years Topic Government Remove constraint Topic: Government
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  • Author: Cade McCurdy, Harvey Galper, Reehana Raza
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: For national governments around the world, effective budgeting depends on accurate revenue forecasts. Revenue forecasts are estimates of what governments will collect from various sources, such as income taxes, value-added taxes, corporate taxes, and excises, which together determine the funds available to allocate to various public programs. If revenues are significantly overestimated in the budgetary process, the results can be unexpected borrowing, high debt-service costs, and cutbacks in these important governmental services. Under Kenya’s newly decentralized government structure, accurate revenue forecasting has become more important than ever. Kenya’s new constitution, approved in 2010, decentralized the country’s government structure and created 47 county governments, each responsible for a broad range of programs and services. Counties’ execution of these programs depends heavily on funds from the national government.
  • Topic: Government, Budget, Economic Growth, Revenue Management
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa
  • Author: Reehana Raza, Karuti Kanyinga, Akanshaka Ray
  • Publication Date: 08-2019
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: On August 8, 2017, Kenya held its first elections since creating 47 new county governments in 2013 under a constitution promulgated in 2010. The elections were intensely contested both at the national and local level. Disputes over presidential results, amid allegations of fraud, saw Kenya’s new apex court, the Supreme Court, annul the August 8 presidential election. The court ordered a fresh presidential poll, which was held on October 26, 2017. Meanwhile, more than 20 local governorship results were legally contested, with multiple cases being taken all the way to the Supreme Court. These elections and the violence that followed the disputed presidential election created long periods of uncertainty across Kenya’s national and local government. In Wajir county, the election result for governor was contested for almost 20 months, until the Supreme Court ruled last February that the election was valid. Political transition generally creates uncertainty for bureaucrats, but prolonged transition periods exacerbate uncertainty and paralyze government functions. An annual survey and a technical report by partners implementing a project funded by the US Agency for International Development and the UK Department for International Development, Agile Harmonized Assistance for Devolved Institutions (AHADI), assesses how 22 Kenyan counties are improving their capacity to efficiently provide services to citizens. The most recent 2018 assessment shows how the 2017 elections undermined counties’ ability to sustain and maintain capacity-building initiatives.
  • Topic: Development, Government, Elections, Transition
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa
  • Author: Fenohasina Rakotondrazaka Maret, Jacques Lévesque
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: Across Africa, there is increasing public investment in strategies to promote government transparency and empower citizens to hold their leaders accountable. Achieving transparency, however, is a formidable challenge, especially given constraining political contexts in some sub-Saharan African countries, a third of which have been ruled by a single party for several decades.
  • Topic: Government, Democracy, Accountability, Investment, Transparency
  • Political Geography: Africa, Tanzania
  • Author: Fenohasina Rakotondrazaka Maret, Sarra Souid
  • Publication Date: 05-2017
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: Last month, a leaked US State Department budget document raised concerns around whether the Trump administration plans to eliminate funding for the State Department’s Office of Global Women’s Issues. These concerns were allayed by the budget released this week that maintains the office and gives it more funding. This reprieve from the general cuts in the foreign assistance budget is welcome, but the fact that the office still lacks an appointed leader from the new administration raises questions about what—if any—strategy the United States will implement in this important area.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Government, Women, International Development
  • Political Geography: North America, United States of America
  • Author: Benjamin Edwards, Mohammad Hamze
  • Publication Date: 11-2015
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: The world’s urban population is projected to add 2.5 billion people by 2050, with nearly 90 percent of the increase concentrated in Asia and Africa. The provision of safe, clean drinking water in urban settings is a high priority for international development, and justifiably so. Drinking water that is protected from contamination improves health, education, and economic growth, yet roughly 150 million urban dwellers do not have access, with numbers on the rise. Fortunately, the problem has not gone unrecognized. An expansive body of work explores the causes of water market failures and the policy interventions national governments can use to mitigate them. This body of work, however, has paid less heed to local governments’ role in implementing those policies, a critical link in the chain of service provision.
  • Topic: Development, Government, Water, Cities
  • Political Geography: Africa, Asia, Global Focus
  • Author: Jameson Boex, Benjamin Edwards
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: As we approach this year’s deadline for achieving the UN’s Millennium Development Goals, the global development community is trying to decide how to make the new targets for 2030 more responsive and appropriate to local needs. An important piece of this debate concerns the role of local governments, and how local spending on public services such as health care and education could promote human welfare. A growing body of research explores this relationship, but so far the focus of most studies has been limited to spending by elected local governments, with the assumption that this type of local spending is the only type that matters. Yet many local entities responsible for service delivery in the developing world are not elected. Excluding resources provided directly by central government ministries or their local administrative arms ignores a rich and complicated story of how different levels of government interact to provide basic services.
  • Topic: Development, Education, Government, Health
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Caroline Smith, Luke Fuller
  • Publication Date: 06-2015
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: Of the world’s 10.5 million refugees, just one-third reside in camps. This figure turns on its head the common perception that refugees live in rural camp settings and begs the question: where are the other seven million refugees? The short answer is that many refugees and displaced peoples make their way to cities or other communities in pursuit of better opportunities for employment and education, to join existing ethnic or familial social networks, and to gain some level of security not available to them in settlements. However, host country policies designed to protect and support refugees often apply only to those residing in settlements, implicitly discouraging refugees from moving into urban areas. So if policies largely overlook the existence of urban refugees, how do governments, humanitarian agencies, civil society organizations, and others plan, implement, and coordinate efforts to ensure that this massive segment of the refugee population is cared for?
  • Topic: Government, Refugees, Displacement
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Charles Cadwell
  • Publication Date: 03-2013
  • Content Type: Commentary and Analysis
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: All eyes are on Kenya today as some 14 million citizens are expected to vote for an array of candidates for president and other offices. The world hopes to avoid a repeat of the post-election violence in late 2007 and early 2008 that killed some 1,500 people and created as many as 600,000 refugees, a trauma that lingers even five years later. Indeed, one candidate and his running mate are under indictment at the International Criminal Court in The Hague for their role in the 2008 violence. Nonetheless, at a rally last weekend, six presidential candidates held hands and committed to accept the results of the vote. While there are reports of scattered pre-election violence, most observers do not expect a repeat of the last cycle’s mayhem. In this circumstance, it’s easy to lose sight of the dramatic changes in Kenya’s political and governmental structure that take place tomorrow. These elections launch an entirely new constitutional arrangement for Kenya.
  • Topic: Government, Elections, Constitution, Transition
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa