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On Planning for Development: governance and institutions                                                          Editor: Róbinson Rojas Sandford
World Governance Survey: a new approach to assessing governance
By J. Court and G. Hyden - 2005
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has stated that ‘good governance is perhaps the single most important factor in eradicating poverty and promoting development’. If governance matters, so does the need for more reliable and valid data on key governance processes. The United Nations University (UNU) has begun to address this need with a World Governance Survey (WGS). A pilot phase was carried out in early 2001 and a larger round of country assessments is planned for 2003.
In the pilot phase, governance assessments were undertaken in 16 developing and transitional societies, representing 51 per cent of the world’s population (see table). In each country, a national coordinator selected a panel of experts to complete the assessment. The panel comprised persons with extensive experience of the governance realm, including parliamentarians, researchers, lawyers and civil servants; around 35 people were interviewed per country.
The project identified 30 indicators based on widely held ‘principles’ of good governance: participation, fairness, decency, accountability, transparency and efficiency. Respondents were asked to rank each answer on a scale from 1 to 5; the higher the score, the better. In addition, respondents were invited to provide qualitative comments.
The table shows the median indicator rating for each country for the 10 indicators that relate particularly to accountability and transparency. It also shows the total governance score for each country. The total governance scores have a very robust correlation (0.77) with the country scores in Kaufmann et al.’s aggregate governance indicators, indicating the validity of the results.3
The judiciary and governance in 16 developing countries
By J. Court, G. Hyden and K. Mease - 2005
Individuals and groups inevitably at times get into conflict and societies require institutions that can resolve disputes. As part of a project to undertake comprehensive governance assessments, we focus here on the nature of the rules (formal and informal) that affect the judicial arena. The legal culture of a society is important for how people perceive not only the judiciary but also the political system at large. The way judicial institutions operate also has an impact on a country’s economic and development performance.
This paper presents the findings for the judiciary arena in 16 developing countries. We find that the judicial arena is problematic in virtually all countries included in our survey. Access to justice remains low. Administration of justice is not only slow, but there is often widespread corruption and a lack of accountability. People lack trust in the court system. The problems are particularly pronounced in former communist countries, including China, because of both the pace and extent of economic and political reform. Laws are often outdated and create problems for the transformation of these regimes.
Asymmetric Globalization: global markets require good global politics
By N. Birdsall - 2002
The paper sets out two views of the facts about the effects of globalization on world poverty and inequality. The bottom line: globalization is not the cause, but neither is it the solution to world poverty and inequality. The paper then explores why and how the global economy is stacked against the poor, making globalization asymmetric, at least up to now. It concludes with some ideas about a new agenda of good global politics, an agenda to shape a future global economy and society that is less poor and less unequal -- not only because it is more global and competitive, but also because it is more fair and more politically representative.
Understanding the relationship between institutions and economic development - some theoretical issues
By Ha-Joon Chang - 2005
The issue of institutional development, or “governance reform”, has come to prominence during the last several years. During this period, the academic literature on institutions and development has exploded. And today even the World Bank and the IMF, which used to dismiss institutions as mere “details” that do not affect the wisdom of the orthodox economic theory, have come around to emphasising the role of institutions in economic development. For example, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) put great emphasis on reforming corporate governance institutions and bankruptcy laws during the 1997 Asian crisis, while the World Bank’s recent annual report (Building Institutions for Markets, 2002) focuses on institutional development, although from a rather narrow point of view, as indicated by its title. Of course, the new attention paid to institutions in the orthodox literature should not be seen as the result of an innocent scholastic awakening. Rather, it is better seen as an attempt to cope with the continued failures of orthodox policies in the real world.
Institutions, policies and economic development
By G. W. Kolodko - 2005
Institutions are not only created and built, but also – and especially – need to be learnt. It is a process which takes place in all economies, but acquires a special importance in less advanced countries. Not only theoretical arguments, but also the practical experience over the past 15 years demonstrate that faster economic growth – and hence also, more broadly, socioeconomic development – is attained by those countries which take greater care to foster the institutional reinforcement of market economy. However, progress in market-economy institution building is not in itself sufficient to ensure sustained growth. Another indispensable component is an appropriately designed and implemented economic policy which must not confuse the means with the aims.
Governance in decentralized development aid programs
By J. P. Platteau and F. Gaspart - 2004
Of late, there has been growing concern about weak aid effectiveness and low absorption capacity of poor countries (Boone, 1996; Alesina and Dollar, 2000; Burnside and Dollar, 2000; Isham and Kaufmann, 2000; Easterly et al., 2003; Collier and Dollar, 2004). This results both in low rates of aid disbursement, and in low effectiveness of aid actually disbursed. Regarding the latter consequence, Svensson (2000, 2003) and Kanbur (forthcoming) have argued that, when conditions are attached to an aid program (such as the requirement of reform efforts in structural adjustment programs), money tends to be disbursed irrespective of whether these conditions have been fulfilled or not. According to Svensson (2003), the bias towards disbursing committed funds to the ex ante designated recipient irrespective of its performance, is caused by a ‘budget-pressure problem’ arising from the high cost of not disbursing the money allocated. To some extent at least, such kind of problems, it may be pointed out, prevent low aid effectiveness from inducing still lower rates of aid disbursement. The main contention of this paper is that the problem of weak aid effectiveness due to lax implementation of conditionality may also undermine programs of participatory or decentralized development. In particular, problems of corruption and opportunistic behavior do not disappear because aid is channelled through local levels. There is no reason to think that patronage is less present at those levels than at the top of the government’s hierarchy.
Corruptibility, transparency, and bureaucratic institutional structure
John Bennett & Saul Estrin 2005
We analyze the role of bureaucratic corruption in the context of infrastructure investment and public service provision by a foreign firm in a developing economy. This type of investment involves a relatively large sunk element, and so the investor may offer a bribe to avoid expropriation, as well as to obtain more favourable terms in the initial contract. We examine these issues for both a centralized and a decentralized bureaucracy, and we consider the role of transparency in each case. Among our results is that, provided there is transparency, domestic welfare and social efficiency may be enhanced by decentralization. The key factor underlying this result is that one bureaucrat in effect may collude with the investor to reduce the payoff of another bureaucrat.
From ODI - World Governance Assessment
World Governance Assessment

Measuring Governance: Methodological Challenges Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2001) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 2.
Assessing Governance in 16 Countries: The Aggregate Picture Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 3.
Civil Society and Governance in 16 Developing Countries Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 4.
Political Society and Governance in 16 Developing Countries Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 5.
Government and Governance in 16 Developing Countries Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 6.
The Bureaucracy and Governance in 16 Developing Countries Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 7.
Economic Society and Governance in 16 Developing Countries Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 8.
The Judiciary and Governance in 16 Developing Countries Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 9.
Conclusions from Phase I Goran Hyden, Julius Court and Kenneth Mease (2003) World Governance Survey Discussion Paper 10.

Phase 1 Country Findings

These preliminary assessments were carried out in 2000 and 2001. We are grateful for the support of the United Nations University and United Nations Development Programme.

Please click on the links below to see a brief governance report for each country.

Argentina There is an important gap between citizens and representatives.
The judicial system is one of the basic problem areas in Bulgarian society at present.
There is a gap between political elite and citizens.
The Party guides judicial procedures … there is not much indication that Chinese respondents see democracy around the corner.
Right from birth to death nothing happens without bribery and corruption. People can neither live nor die with dignity.
Regime change from authoritarian to democratic one in Indonesia is the main factor for all these progresses.
The new King encouraged civil society, enhanced liberalization and underlined the economic problem as top priority for the country.
The government structure has gone through a significant change… problem of corruption is recognized at high levels.
The country has coped with a double transition - from an authoritarian state to a democracy, as well as from a centralized to a market economy.
Unfortunately, Pakistan's governance realm has very few bright spots … cronyism and corruption remain major problems.
There is a consensus about the need of greater transparency and an active fight against corruption.
The Estrada administration gained much notoriety for its tolerance of cronies and its lack of transparency in dealing with businessmen.
The mass media are increasingly controlled by authorities and oligarchic clans. Freedom of expression is enjoyed by an insignificant part of society, mainly the political elite.
Those in power have proved incapable of affecting greater democratization as they are more contented with winning elections than democratizing the country.
The survey results point to an improvement over time in the quality of governance.
The country is characterised by a blockage in the political life, mediocrity of economic performances and the deterioration of living conditions of citizens.
The views expressed in these documents and reports are those of the respective authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Overseas Development Institute.

Phase 2 overall findings

Governance assessments for local stakeholders: What the World Governance Assessment offers
Final report from Phase 2
Goran Hyden, Kenneth Mease, Marta Foresti and Verena Fritz
Governance Assessment: Overview of governance assessment frameworks and results from the 2006 World Governance Assessment
Report from ODI Learning Workshop, 15 February 2007

From The World Bank Group
Governance - the World Bank ' s experience
Collection: Development in Practice
Publication: 31/05/1994 ---- ISBN number: 0-8213-2804-2

This report summarizes the governance work undertaken by the World Bank in the last two years. It provides an overview of governance activities in lending, economic and sector work, and in research and dialogue. Progress across regions is reported under the four major components of governance identified in the 1992 governance report:
1) public sector management;
2) accountability;
3) legal framework for development; and
4) transparency and information.

In addition, other issues that are related to Bank activities - such as more participatory approaches to policy, program, and project design and implementation, military expenditures; and human rights - are raised. Internal procedures and organizational issues relevant to the Bank ' s governance work are also discussed. Although the magnitude of the World Bank ' s work in governance cannot be directly measured because of the diffuseness of the topic, the report concludes that the volume of governance-related lending and research by the Bank is substantial and growing. This work has concentrated on the economic and social dimensions of governance, using a variety of approaches, both traditional and innovative. The intensity of governance work varies from country to country according to country circumstances and needs. In the past two years, the most comprehensive governance work has been carried out in Latin America and the Caribbean and in Africa.

Governance and the Economy in Africa:Tools for Analysis and Reform of Corruption 1996
  • Foreword, by Anne Williams, USAID Mission Director, Dakar, Senegal
  • About this Volume
  • Chapter 1: Governance, Development, and the Quality of Institutions
  • Chapter 2: Understanding Governance Challenges
  • Chapter 3: Responses to Corruption
  • Chapter 4: Applying Lessons from Experience in Combatting Corruption
  • Annexes
  • Table 1: Case Study Policy Analysis Framework
  • Table 2: Strategies for Reform
  • Dakar Workshop Program
  • Bibliography

From Finance and Development
A quarterly magazine of the IMF
December 2007
Volume 44, Number 4

Global Governance: Who's in Charge?
'Global Governance: Who's in Charge?' examines the challenges—financial, health, environmental, and trade—facing the international community in the 21st century and asks whether today';s system of global governance is equipped to cope with them. The lead article asserts that the system that served as a model for much of the 20th century is out of date, and it explores what needs to be done to strengthen it. Other articles on this theme look at the recent U.S. subprime market crisis, the differences between financial crises of the 19th and 20th centuries and what future crises will look like, the need for a stronger system of multilateral trade, and how global health threats can be handled. 'People in Economics' profiles Michael Kremer; 'Picture This' describes the changing aid landscape; 'Country Focus' spotlights the United Arab Emirates; and 'Straight Talk' examines the impact of high food prices. Also in this issue, articles examine development in Africa, and 'backcasting' data in Latin America.

Global Governance: New Players, New Rules

James M. Boughton and Colin I. Bradford, Jr.
Oversight of international relations is inadequate for the 2lst century. To strengthen the governance of global interactions requires rationalizing the relationships among sovereign states, updating the existing multilateral institutions, and creating an effective oversight body.
(pdf format, 1,026 kb)

Subprime: Tentacles of a Crisis
Randall Dodd
Turbulence in the U.S. subprime market in mid-2007 caused worldwide financial turmoil. An architectural tour of the U.S. mortgage market shows its structural weaknesses and explains why the crisis spread to other developed and emerging economies.
(pdf format, 207 kb)

Governing Global Trade
Uri Dadush and Julia Nielson
The multilateral system of rules that has governed international trade for more than 50 years is facing serious challenges stemming from the increased role of developing countries and the sensitivity of the unfinished liberalization agenda.
(pdf format, 278 kb)

Financial Crises of the Future
Paolo Mauro and Yishay Yafeh
Financial crises in the 1890s did not spill over borders, unlike crises that erupted a century later. Whether future crises will more resemble the 1890s or the 1990s is unclear, but it is useful to ponder the implications for global financial governance if international spillovers remain possible.
(pdf format, 351 kb)

Governing Global Health
David E. Bloom
As global health threats have grown, new players have altered the shape of the health system. But is the current system of health governance adequate to oversee the changing array of players and ensure that the right health issues are being tackled?
(pdf format, 240 kb)

Point of View
Is the Global Health System Broken?
Joe Cerrell, Helene Gayle and J. Stephen Morison, and Tore Godal
Three points of view on how the global health system can be improved.
(pdf format, 148 kb)

December 2007:  full text

From United Nations University:

Peace and Governance Programme:

International Order and Justice

Atrocities and International Accountability
Edited by William A. Schabas, Ramesh Thakur, and Edel Hughes

After Mass Crime
Edited by Béatrice Pouligny, Simon Chesterman and Albrecht Schnabel

Enhancing Global Governance: Towards a New Diplomacy?
Edited by Andrew Cooper, John English, and Ramesh Thakur

The Future of the United Nations: Potential for the Twenty-first Century
Edited by Chadwick F. Alger

The Global Environment in the Twenty-first Century: Prospects for International Cooperation
Edited by Pamela S. Chasek
[The United Nations System in the Twenty-first Century]

Global Governance and the United Nations System
Edited by Volker Rittberger

International Criminal Accountability and Children's Rights
Edited by Karin Arts and Vesselin Popovski

International Security Management and the United Nations
Edited by Muthiah Alagappa and Takashi Inoguchi

The Iraq Crisis and World Order
Edited by Ramesh Thakur and Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu

The Legitimacy of International Organizations
Edited by Jean-Marc Coicaud and Veijo Heiskanen

Multilateralism Under Challenge?
Edited by Edward Newman, Ramesh Thakur and John Tirman

New Millennium, New Perspectives: The United Nations, Security, and Governance
Edited by Ramesh Thakur and Edward Newman
[UNU Millennium Series]

Power in Transition: The Peaceful Change of International Order
Charles A. Kupchan, Emanuel Adler, Jean-Marc Coicaud and Yuen Foong Khong with the assistance of Jason Davidson and Mira Sucharov

The Role of the World Trade Organization in Global Governance
Edited by Gary P. Sampson

State, Society, and the UN System: Changing Perspectives on Multilateralism
Edited by Keith Krause and W. Andy Knight

Tests of Global Governance: Canadian Diplomacy and United Nations World Conferences
By Andrew F. Cooper

The United Nations System: The Policies of Member States
Edited by Chadwick F. Alger, Gene M. Lyons, and John E. Trent

Conflict and Security

Arms Control after Iraq
Edited by Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu and Ramesh Thakur

Asia's Emerging Regional Order: Reconciling Traditional and Human Security
Edited by William T. Tow, Ramesh Thakur, and In Taek Hyun

Beyond Violence: Conflict Resolution Process in Northern Ireland
Mari Fitzduff

Broadening Asia's Security Discourse and Agenda: Political, Social and Environmental Perspectives
Edited by Ramesh Thakur and Edward Newman

Challenges to Peacebuilding
Edited by Edward Newman and Oliver Richmond

The Chemical Weapons Convention: Implementation, Challenges and Opportunities
Edited by Ramesh Thakur and Ere Haru

Conflict Prevention: Path to Peace or Grand Illusion?
Edited by David Carment and Albrecht Schnabel

Crossing National Borders: Human Migration Issues in Northeast Asia
Edited by Tsuneo Akaha and Anna Vassilieva

Diasporas in International Conflict
Edited by Hazel Smith and Paul Stares

From Civil Strife to Civil Society: Civil and Military Responsibilities in Disrupted States
Edited by William Maley, Charles Sampford, and Ramesh Thakur

Reconstituting Korean Security
Edited by Hazel Smith

Refugees and Forced Displacement: International Security, Human Vulnerability, and the State
Edited by Edward Newman and Joanne van Selm

Researching Conflict in Africa: Insights and Experiences
Edited by Elisabeth Porter, Gillian Robinson, Marie Smyth, Albrecht Schnabel, and Eghosa Osaghae

Security Sector Reform and Post-Conflict Peacebuilding
Edited by Albrecht Schnabel and Hans-Georg Ehrhart

Northeast Asian Regional Security: The Role of International Institutions
Edited by Takashi Inoguchi and Grant B. Stillman

Peacekeepers, Politicians, and Warlords: The Liberian Peace Process
Abiodun Alao, John Mackinlay and 'Funmi Olonisakin
[UNU Series on Foundations of Peace]

Researching Conflict in Africa
Edited by Elisabeth Porter, Gillian Robinson, Marie Smyth, Albrecht Schnabel, and Eghosa Osaghae

Unintended Consequences of Peacekeeping
Edited by Chiyuki Aoi, Cedric de Coning and Ramesh Thakur

United Nations Peacekeeping Operations: A Guide to French Policies
Edited by Brigitte Stern

United Nations Peace-keeping Operations: Ad Hoc Missions, Permanent Engagement
Edited by Ramesh Thakur and Albrecht Schnabel

Democracy and Governance

The Changing Nature of Democracy
Edited by Takashi Inoguchi, Edward Newman and John Keane

Democracy, Governance and Economic Performance: East and Southeast Asia
Edited by Ian Marsh, Takashi Inoguchi and Jean Blondel

Democracy in Latin America: (Re)Constructing Political Society
Edited by Manuel Antonio Garretón M. and Edward Newman

The Democratic Process and the Market: Challenges of the Transition
Edited by Mihály Simai

Democratization in the Middle East: Experiences, Struggles, Challenges
Edited by Amin Saikal and Albrecht Schnabel

The UN Role in Promoting Democracy: Between Ideals and Reality
Edited by Edward Newman and Roland Rich

Human Rights and Ethics

Ethics and International Affairs: Extent and Limits
Edited by Jean-Marc Coicaud and Daniel Warner

Ethics in Action
Edited by Daniel A. Bell and Jean-Marc Coicaud

Financing for Development: Proposals from Business and Civil Society
Edited by Barry Herman, Federica Pietracci, and Krishnan Sharma

The Globalization of Human Rights
Edited by Jean-Marc Coicaud, Michael W. Doyle, and Anne-Marie Gardner

From Sovereign Impunity to International Accountability: The Search for Justice in a World of States
Edited by Ramesh Thakur and Peter Malcontent

Human Rights and Comparative Foreign Policy
Edited by David P. Forsythe
[UNU Series on Foundations of Peace]

Human Rights and Societies in Transition: Causes, Consequences, Responses
Edited by Shale Horowitz and Albrecht Schnabel

Humanitarian Diplomacy
Edited by Larry Minear and Hazel Smith

Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention: Selective Indignation, Collective Action, and International Citizenship
Edited by Albrecht Schnabel and Ramesh Thakur

Responsibility in World Business: Managing Harmful Side-effects of Corporate Activity
Edited by Lene Bomann-Larsen and Oddny Wiggen

Policy and Institutional Frameworks

Regulating Globalization
Edited by Pierre de Senarclens and Ali Kazancigil

International Commissions and the Power of Ideas
Edited by Ramesh Thakur, Andrew F. Cooper, John English

Executive Summary (238 KB PDF)

Reforming from the Top: A Leaders' 20 Summit
Edited by John English, Ramesh Thakur and Andrew F. Cooper

Making States Work: State Failure and the Crisis of Governance
Edited by Simon Chesterman, Michael Ignatieff, and Ramesh Thakur

Policy Briefs

Reforming from the Top - A Leaders' 20 Summit
Andrew S. Thompson, 2005

The Impact of Spoilers on Peace Processes and Peacebuilding
Edward Newman and Oliver Richmond, 2006

International Criminal Accountability and Children's Rights
Vesselin Popovski and Karin Arts, 2006

A Global Partnership for Eradicating Poverty: Prospects and Potentials
Martina Timmermann, Helena Sterwe and Prakhar Sharma, 2006

The Chemical Weapons Convention: Implementation, Challenges and Opportunities
Tejal Chandan and Ramesh Thakur, 2006

The Ethical Challenges of International Human Rights NGOs
Daniel Bell and Jean-Marc Coicaud, 2006

Multilateralism Under Challenge?
Edward Newman, Ramesh Thakur, and John Tirman, 2006

Peacebuilding – the Asian Perspective
Report of a conference on 'People Building Peace – Human Resource Development in Asia for Peacebuilding' held at the UN University in Tokyo 28 and 29 August, 2006.
Linda Kotze

Published reports and proceedings of meetings, conferences or seminars

What is Equitable: Geographic Representation in the Twenty-first Century
Edited by Ramesh Thakur
Report of a seminar held by the International Peace Academy and the United Nations University, New York, USA, 26 March 1999

Market Forces and Security
by Chung-in Moon
This paper was originally prepared for the Annual Symposium on the United Nations System in the Twenty-first Century, United Nations University Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan, 8-9 November 1996

"Asian Values" and Democracy in Asia
Proceedings of a Conference held at Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan, as part of the First Shizuoka Asia-Pacific Forum: The Future of the Asia-Pacific Region. The Forum was organized by the Shizuoka Prefectural Government and the Organizing Committee of the Asia-Pacific Forum.
28 March 1997

Our Planet and Human Security
Selected Papers delivered at the United Nations University Global Seminar 1996 Shonan Session, Kobe, Japan
1-4 October 1996

World NGO Conference
Report of the First Preparatory Meeting held at UNU Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan.
23-24 September 1996

Globalism and Regionalism
Selected Papers delivered at the United Nations University Global Seminar 1996 Shonan Session in Hayama, Japan
2-6 September 1996

Envisioning the United Nations in the Twenty-first Century
Proceedings of the Inaugural Symposium on the United Nations System in the Twenty-first Century, UNU Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan - 21-22 November 1995

Page last modified 2008.03.25.

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