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2.2 Empowering local authorities: autonomy & accountability

Page created by
Jorge Rodriguez Bilbao3 April 2017

Recognising LAs as governments in their own right — and not just as implementing agencies on behalf of the central state — raises questions about their autonomy and accountability.

Key variables in explaining its performance as a development actor
foundation stones of any LA system:


LA autonomy

refers to the ability of LAs to adopt policies, implement programmes and issue regulations on their own initiative limited only by the legality of their actions.


LA accountability

is about LAs being responsible for their actions. Three types of accountability mechanisms are here considered: upward, downward and horizontal.


There are 3 types of accountability mechanisms for LAs


Figure 5.3 Three types of Accountability mechanisms involving local authorities



To go further... read this

  • Clark, G. L. 1984. ‘A Theory of Local Autonomy’


To go further... watch this

  • Accountability of Local Authorities
  • Autonomy of Local Authorities
  • Link between autonomy and Accountability
  • What is fiscal autonomy at local level


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