Decentralisation, Service Delivery, and People’s Perspectives: Empirical Observations on Selected Social Protection Programs in India
There has been a consensus in the literature that decentralized governance facilitates pro-poor economic and social development (e.g., Turner & Hulme, 1997). It is suggested that the decentralization of development programs tends to improve targeting of clients and relevance of such programs to their contexts (Kingsley, 1996; Manor, 1999). The proponents of decentralized development argue that it produces more efﬁcient outcomes than the centralized top-down models of development (Kingsley, 1996; Manor, 1999). Decentralized decision-making is also claimed to be promoting and deepening democratization (Abers, 2000; Blair, 2000; Kohl, 2003; Wunch, 1998), and supporting good governance (Heller, 2001; Nordholt, 2004).