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100,000 to 1 million people

Increasing Access to Justice for Women, the Poor, and Those Living in Remote Areas: An Indonesian Case Study

Leisha Lister, Cate Sumner, Matthew Zurstrassen,

Recent reforms in the religious courts of Indonesia have resulted in a 14-fold increase in the number of poor clients able to access the courts through court fee waivers and a fourfold increase in the number able to access circuit courts in remote areas. These increases are significant because the ability of the poor, particularly…

Hybrid Forms Of Accountability: Citizen Engagement in Institutions of Public-Sector Oversight in India

Anne Marie Goetz, Rob Jenkins,

The public sector institutions which are responsible for monitoring government performance are not normally open to citizen participation. Yet there is widespread dissatisfaction with the capacities of states to exercise self restraining functions effectively, and a growing interest among citizens to inform, monitor, or participate directly in the workings of these oversight institutions. This paper…

Reclaiming the Public Health System: Qualitative Report on Community Based Monitoring and Planning of Health Services in Maharashtra

Prashant Khunte, Amruta Walimbe,

The general perception is that nothing can happen smoothly and efficiently in public systems. While people often complain about delays and problems they experience in Government offices, they exhibit indifference towards this system at the same time. The public health system is no exception to this prevalent sense of apathy. Usually people are least concerned…

Report on Indigenous Women and the Lapsset Corridor in Laikipia and Isiolo Counties

Samburu Women Trust, Dr. Sena Kanyinke,

Indigenous Peoples have diverse, often negative experiences with mega-infrastructure projects. For Indigenous Peoples in Laikipia and Isiolo counties, the Lamu-Port-South Sudan-EthiopiaTransport (LAPSSET) Corridor program is one such mega project that may portend good or bad for them. The LAPSSET corridor program is a flagship infrastructure project under Kenya’s Vision 2030. As conceived, the LAPSSET program…

Legal Aid in Illinois: Selected Social and Economic Benefits

Jonah Kushner,

Equal access to the justice system is a fundamental principle of American democracy. The U.S. Constitution guarantees equal protection of the laws and due process in the courts to allAmericans—not just those who can afford a lawyer. By providing legal counsel to those who cannot afford it, legal aid helps ensure that all Americans receive equal protection and due process,…

Do Informed Voters Make Better Choices? Experimental Evidence from Urban India

Abhijit V. Banerjee, Selvan Kumar, Rohini Pande, Felix Su,

Disclosure laws for politicians exist in over a hundred countries. But can disclosures about incumbent performance and candidate qualifications influence electoral accountability in settings characterized by weak institutions and less educated populations? In the run-up to elections in Delhi, we implemented a field experiment where we provided slum dwellers with newspapers containing report cards on candidate qualifications and their…

Can Public Feedback Enhance Public Accountability? Experiences with Citizen Report Cards

Dr. Gopakumar K Thampi,

Emergent narratives in the domain of public accountability increasingly point to the role of user feedback in demanding and catalyzing responsiveness and accountability from providers of public utilities. Faced with very few exit options, users of public utilities are finding creative use of voice mechanisms to effectively highlight critical issues and bring in reforms. One such tool is…

Holding the State to Account: Lessons of Bangalore’s Citizen Report Cards

Samuel Paul,

Failure of the state to effectively monitor the outcomes of public expenditure is a major reason for corruption and the low level of accountability in most countries. There are genuine problems of observation, measurement and incentives behind this failure. In respect of public services, it is possible to substantially compensate for this failure by seeking “user feedback” on…

Enhancing Accountability in Public Service Delivery through Social Audits: A case study of Andhra Pradesh, India

Ritesh Singh, Vinay Vutukuru,

Over the last few years there has been a growing emphasis on the importance of enhancing accountability in public services by the government. There have been a large number of civil society and state-led initiatives which aim to facilitate the process of citizen engagement with the state, during planning, implementation and evaluation of government projects. Social audit is one…

An Assessment of the Impact of Bangalore Citizen Report Cards on the Performance of Public Agencies

Adikeshavalu Ravindra,

This resource, from the World Bank’s ECD Working Paper Series – Number 12, June 2004, finds that citizen report cards have been an important vehicle for civil society’s “voice” in Bangalore, and that they have had a significant impact on the quality of public services. The review identifies success factors and considers the replicability of the report card approach.

Costly justice: Why communities in Sierra Leone turn to paralegals instead of Local Courts to resolve their justice problems

Posted by Aisha Fofana Ibrahim, Felix Marco Conteh, Henry Mbawa, Sonkita Conteh, and Yakama Manty Jones in Community Paralegals

The Justice for All report highlights the need to create better justice journeys by empowering people and communities, providing access to people-centered justice services and ensuring fair outcomes. An estimated 70% of Sierra Leoneans depend on Local Courts for the resolution of their justice problems such as child and spousal support, property, tenancy and land…