By Diana Mitlin
12 January 2017
In December a team from ESID visited Uganda to share the outcomes of research on TSUPU: the Transforming Settlements of the Urban Poor Programme. In the first in a series of blogs on this innovative research on urban poverty in Uganda, Diana reflects on lessons learned and the value of academia co-producing knowledge with multiple stakeholders.
With close to one billion people living in informal settlements across towns and cities of the global South, and numbers anticipated to rise significantly over the next decade, finding solutions to improve people’s living conditions is a global imperative. Transforming Settlements of the Urban Poor in Uganda (TSUPU) is one of the initiatives recently undertaken in sub-Saharan Africa to address such needs.
ESID’s researchers have been working with the National Slum Dwellers Federation of Uganda and its support NGO, ACTogether, to understand programme outcomes and to gather evidence about why and how positive impacts have been secured. TSUPU has provided a learning platform to build and share knowledge about the contribution of government and citizen partnerships to urban poverty reduction. TSUPU itself has now finished, but a successor programme, USMID, is helping to support some of this work.
10 January 2017
The Politics of Inclusive Development was recently described by Edward S. Mason Professor of International Development, emerita, Harvard Kennedy School, Merilee Grindle as “essential reading for anyone seeking to understand why politics matters”.
To read online, click open access.
Read a review by Alice Evans.
5 January 2017
In 2010, the WHO estimated that, every year, 100 million people are pushed into poverty and 150 million suffer financial catastrophe because of out-of-pocket expenditure on health services. Providing affordable healthcare to the populations of low- and middle-income countries is consequently at the top of the development agenda. Universal health coverage is one of the central targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Rwanda currently has the highest health insurance coverage of any country in Africa. This was achieved mainly by rolling out the Community-Based Health Insurance (CBHI) scheme, otherwise known by its French name mutuelles de santé. The scheme works as follows: an individual pays a yearly a sum of money to the state (specifically, to the Rwanda Social Security Board) to be covered by the health insurance. This in return allows the individual to access healthcare at 10 percent of the billable cost of services.
3 January 2017*
Political incentives are known to play a role in the allocation of public resources from upper- to lower-tier governments. This column seeks to examine whether ruling parties in local governments favour their own constituencies in allocating MNREGA funds, whether they target their core supporters or swing voters, and whether this has any electoral returns. It is based on ESID Working Paper 63, ‘Is partisan alignment electorally rewarding? Evidence from village council elections in India‘, also by Dey and Sen.
An influential literature has highlighted the role of political incentives in the allocation of public resources from upper- to lower-tier governments (Dixit and Londregan 1996, Dahlberg and Johansson 2002). So far, the empirical evidence on the role of political incentives has mostly focused on intergovernmental transfers or grants, and there is limited evidence on whether partisan alignment is also evident for other public programmes, and how lower-tier governments allocate funds once they are received (Dasgupta et al. 2004).