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ERIC Number: ED503953
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jan
Pages: 72
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Institutional Change and Its Impact on the Poor and Excluded: The Indian Decentralisation Experience. OECD Development Centre Working Paper No. 242
Narayana, D.
OECD Publishing (NJ1)
This study analyses the impact of democratic decentralisation on the chances of socially excluded groups to participate in newly created local governance institutions--Panchayati Raj Institutions--in three Indian states. This institutional reform included a quota for the disadvantaged--women and lower castes--to ensure their effective participation. The comparative analysis on the determinants of participation of these groups and the poor vis-a-vis other groups across the states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh yields highly interesting results, relevant beyond the Indian context. First, the outcomes of decentralisation on participation are different across states and between different marginalised groups. While in Kerala socially disadvantaged groups and the poor are represented more than other groups at the Panchayat level, in Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh the socially disadvantaged groups are as represented as the others whereas the poor continue to be largely under-represented. In all three states, women are under-represented. Secondly, creating awareness through political mobilisation seems to be the driving factor explaining the different outcomes across the three states. In fact, Kerala distinguished itself from the other two states significantly with respect to mobilisation possibilities through political parties, a denser network of self-help groups, better outcomes in basic education and literacy. The conclusion is that the success of institutional reforms aiming to increase political participation depends on the specific design of the process itself as well as on the local conditions. An effective devolution of resources to Panchayats seems to influence participation positively as does a vibrant political society characterised by a broad spectrum of political parties, active civil society and newspaper reading. (A bibliography is included. Survey questions and maps of the selected states are appended. Contains 11 footnotes, 11 figures and 22 tables.)
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Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: International Labour Organisation, Geneva (Switzerland).
Authoring Institution: Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development
Identifiers - Location: India