Country Manager, Kenya, International Budget Partnership
IDRC Fellow, Center for Global Development
Director of Global Health Policy and Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development
From March 2013, Kenya began devolving a number of functions and about 20% of national revenues to counties. This is part of a larger agenda of ambitious state reforms that was kicked off by the approval of Kenya's 2010 constitution. The theory of devolution suggests that such reforms bring policy/financial decision-making closer to the people on the ground, and lead to more efficient and effective allocations of public resources.
In 2013 and 2014, International Budget Partnership Kenya has been conducting analysis of public finance issues related to devolution in an attempt to make budget decision-making in particular more transparent and to encourage greater public engagement with them. This presentation looked at how the reform process has unfolded, and how institutional and informational constraints have undermined the potential for improved decision-making around revenue sharing, allocation and expenditure. In spite of these constraints, we discussed some notable achievements as well.