SNV Practice Brief: Supporting domestic accountability
25 November 2011
Accountability can be an abstract concept, but it comes alive for ordinary citizens if it involves looking at whether (and how) funding for services is distributed and spent at the local level. This Practice Brief is the first of a new series prepared by practitioners working with the SNV Netherlands Development Organisation. It helps to shed some light on what support organisations can do to amplify the voice of local stakeholders in demanding greater accountability from governments and service providers.
The Brief is based on 21 case studies documented by the Domestic Accountability Partnership, a pilot collaborative programme of the Netherlands Ministry for Development Cooperation and SNV implemented in Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zambia and Benin. The cases show that approaching domestic accountability from the bottom up entails working on an eclectic range of issues: from supporting local communities to get a non-functional cattle dip working again and negotiating with traditional leaders, to finding innovative ways to fund small-scale business enterprises. From an immediate focus on achieving practical results, there is a gradual expansion of the democratic space as local communities become more confident about asking critical questions and demanding better governance - from local leaders initially, but increasingly from higher-level institutions as well.
This Brief is published by the SNV Regional Office for East and Southern Africa and draws mainly from the accompanying SNV Working Paper: Accountability at local level: Experiences from the partnership with the Netherlands Ministry of Development Cooperation on Domestic Accountability. The full background paper can also be downloaded via the link below.Search Terms analytical frameworks casestudies africa