Urban and Local Governments Improved Conditions and Performance

SEGURA has assisted local governments in their efforts to obtain the necessary authority or mandate to provide their own public services, as well as the fiscal means needed to do so and to structure the corresponding tariffs and regulatory controls to promote transparency and accountability. Two projects illustrate this work:

  • As a prime contractor to CAF (Andean Development Corporation), SEGURA evaluated a total of eight (8) municipality development plans on site in four LAC countries (Colombia, Panamá, Ecuador and Perú). As part of the PRAMEG project (Programa Regional Para la Actualización y Mejora de la Gestión Local) SEGURA presented recommendations on performance improvement alternatives for public services and basic infrastructure operations. The project also included local fiscal reform aspects and tax administration elements such as improvement of the cadastre registry and urban property tax collection systems. (see PPR)

  • Under the Consolidation and Enhanced Livelihoods Initiative (CELI – Central) project in Colombia as a sub to Tetra Tech, SEGURA is supporting the post-conflict recovery of six (6) small municipalities in the departments (states) of Caquetá and Cauca. Assistance includes the implementation of urban projects to improve basic services, collaborating with mayors and JACs (Juntas de Acción Comunal). (see PPR)

RTI has substantial experience in technical assistance to urban and local governments.  Relevant projects are described below:

  • Promote More Democratic and Effective Municipalities in Ecuador (PROMUNI). PROMUNI's primary objective is to increase Ecuador’s local governments' capacity in public management in 30 municipalities. In addition, the program works to enhance public participation by including citizens in strategic planning processes and fosters transparency by improving access to information.

  • Indonesia Local Governance Service Improvement Program (Kinerja) (Cooperative Agreement). USAID’s Kinerja program works directly with local governments to improve public service delivery by identifying, testing, and replicating innovative interventions to improve performance. Kinerja uses accountability and performance-based incentives to motivate local governments to improve service delivery.

  • Indonesia. The Knowledge Sector Initiative (KSI) aims to ensure that Indonesia’s knowledge sector produces evidence to inform priority social development policies. KSI works with research organizations across sectors to strengthen their research, organization, and advocacy capacities. KSI supports policymakers to recognize value of evidence in the policy process, clearly articulate their needs for evidence to the research community, and use evidence to inform policy. Funded by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, 2014–2022.

  • Senegal. The Governance for Local Development (GOLD) program is strengthening the ability of local municipalities to provide basic services in support of Senegal’s decentralization process. The program identifies mutually beneficial joint activities with USAID implementing partners in the target sectors and regions, with other development partners, and with Government of Senegal institutions. It is building a culture of collaboration and openness among all stakeholders with a focus on (1) building the capacity of local governments to respond to citizen demands, (2) mobilizing and improving the use of public resources, and (3) increasing community participation in managing services. GOLD also builds capacity in conflict management and mitigation and has a robust learning agenda. Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), 2016–2021.

  • Uganda. The Governance, Accountability, Participation and Performance (GAPP) program is based on the hypothesis that greater accountability drives improvements across all areas of local governance. GAPP is improving the enabling environment for effective service delivery through four interrelated components: (1) improved legal, policy, regulatory, and institutional environment to meet demands for more democratic governance; (2) improved fiscal management and accountability processes for service delivery in targeted districts; (3) improved capacity of citizens and communities to participate in local governance; and (4) support the Ministry of Health to improve transparency and accountability. Funded by USAID and the U.K. Department for International Development (DFID), 2012–2020.

  • Nigeria. The Leadership, Empowerment, Advocacy, and Development (LEAD) program builds partnerships between state and local governments, civil society, and the private sector to improve governance capacity through multi-sectoral activities. LEAD and the target local governments provide visible improvements in service delivery through the creation of Service Improvement Plans in a participatory process. Funded by USAID, 2009–2018.

Castalia advises governments, utilities, and international financial institutions on improving governance and reducing corruption.  Relevant projects are described below:

  • Reducing Corruption and Improving Governance in the Electricity and Water Sectors, World Bank
    Governance and anti-corruption is a key focus area for the World Bank. We developed Sourcebooks for the World Bank on deterring corruption and improving governance in electricity and urban water and sanitation  to help practitioners identify corruption risks, and develop workable plans to improve governance in projects, utilities, and infrastructure sectors

  • Evaluating the Effectiveness of Output Based Aid, Global Partnership for Output Based Aid
    Output based aid uses explicit performance-based subsidies that link the payment of service providers to their delivery of specified "outputs", such as kilowatt hours of electricity supplied or cubic metres of water supplied. Castalia conducted a detailed comparison of different output based aid approaches to help the Global Partnership for Output Based Aid to focus on the most effective strategies. Read More.

  • Good Governance Strategy Honduras Electricity Sector, World Bank
    The World Bank was supporting an electricity distribution project in Honduras that was identified as having high governance risks, at both a country and sector level. Castalia formulated a good governance strategy for the project by recommending risk identification approaches and developing mitigation mechanisms. The resulting action plan was described at the regional review meeting in October 2008 as “pragmatic… but also [containing] numerous innovative elements... among the best practice in the Bank”

  • Good Governance Turn-Around Plan for Guyana’s Water Utility, Department for International Development
    A DFID audit found evidence of corruption and poor governance within Guyana’s national water utility. Castalia worked with the new management of the water company to develop a turn-around plan, incorporating a strategy for combating corruption. The strategy was adopted by the water company, and secured continued DFID support. Castalia is now helping the CEO to implement the strategy

  • Good Governance Learning Program, Asian Development Bank
    The Asian Development Bank organized a learning program on Cross-Border Infrastructure for a Market Economy to teach officials from the Mekong region on good governance in infrastructure development. Castalia developed teaching materials and led sessions on infrastructure and inclusive development, planning and policy coordination, risk management, and accountability and governance

  • Infrastructure Governance Issues in East Asia and the Pacific, Asian Development Bank
    The Asian Development Bank (in coordination with the Japan Bank for International Development and the World Bank) undertook a study to develop an infrastructure strategy for the East Asia and Pacific region to promote dialogue among key decision makers in government, the private sector, and other stakeholders on infrastructure provision. Castalia developed a regional strategy to control corruption and improve accountability in the provision of infrastructure.

  • Governance and Anti-corruption in Construction, Global

    The Construction Sector Transparency Initiative (CoST) is a multi-stakeholder initiative to increase transparency and accountability in the construction sector. Castalia provided guidance and training to support multi-stakeholder groups and sector practitioners in CoST pilot countries helping stakeholders to measure, understand, and reduce corruption in the construction sector. Our work provided practical step-by-step advice on key methods for increasing transparency and accountability in the construction sector.