WP165: Decentralization and quality of social service delivery in sub-Saharan Africa

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Décentralisation et qualité de l’offre de services socio-publics en Afrique subsaharienne
Working papers
Damas Hounsounon

This paper is only available in French.

The purpose of this paper is to analyze, from a purely microeconomic perspective, the impact of decentralization on the quality of the delivery of social services in sub-Saharan Africa. The analysis uses data from the Afrobarometer Round 4 survey, which collected information on the views of citizens on governance, democracy, economic reform, civil society, and the quality of life in 20 African countries. Results of the econometric analysis show that a high degree of decentralization and/or a high quality of democracy promote good governance and in turn the provision of high-quality public services. The process of decentralization in Africa is thus generally beneficial to the population from the perspective of the quality of social and public service delivery. However, while overall decentralization has a positive and significant impact on the quality of public service delivery, the results are mixed when the analysis is conducted by country.