Does Performance Information Enhance Service Delivery? Assessment of a Local Scorecard Initiative in Uganda

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Abstract

Abstract
This article assesses whether the Local Government Council’s Score Card Initiative, implemented in Uganda since 2009, achieved its intended impact of increasing accountability in public spending and service delivery. We analyse a district-level panel dataset (2005-2016) with administrative data, as well as Afrobarometer data on citizen perceptions (2008-2017). Empirically, we exploit the phasing in of the scorecard for a meticulous difference-in-difference framework with district-specific trends. The results show limited measurable impacts of the scorecards on policy making and public services. Scorecard districts appear to spend less of their budgets in comparison with non-scorecard districts. Impacts on service delivery cannot be detected. Yet, the scorecard impacts on citizen perceptions of local councillors’ corruption. Our results provide a quantitative contribution to the literature on accountability by demonstrating that civil society reporting mechanisms about political representatives only trickle down slowly to improved services. Like earlier research, we find that impacts also depend on political competitiveness.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages36
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2021
EventECPR Joint Sessions of Workshops 2021 - Online
Duration: 26 May 202128 May 2021

Conference

ConferenceECPR Joint Sessions of Workshops 2021
Period26/05/2128/05/21

Research programs

  • ISS-GLSJ
  • ISS-DE

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