Unlocking the potential of the Local Public Sector

Central government policy makers and their partners in global development community often approach development from a national perspective or even from a global perspective. In pursuit of ambitious global development objectives, it is easy to become preoccupied with top-down efforts to 'impose development on the local level' rather than making local stakeholders true partners in the development process.

Unlocking the potential of the local public sector will require taking a fresh look at the needs of people and communities in developing countries from a local perspective.

Fixing the vertical obstacles in the public sector that prevent efficient and equitable frontline services from being delivered requires us to first have a thorough understanding of how the local public sector is structured and what obstacles prevent the local level from contributing more effectively to economic growth and poverty reduction. Evidence-based research is needed to identify how local government officials, central policy government makers and development partners can best strenghten the local public sector in a way that would allow local officials to respond more efficiently and equitably to local needs.