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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Formalizing the Informal Sector or Creating an Enabling Environment? A Review of Public Policy Towards Informal Sector Development in Kenya
Author:Wegulo, Francis N.
Periodical:Eastern and Southern Africa Geographical Journal
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Kenya
East Africa
Subjects:informal sector
economic policy
Labor and Employment
Economics and Trade
Development and Technology
Politics and Government
Economics, Commerce
government policy
development planning
Abstract:A reappraisal of development models is called for if development problems are to be effectively tackled. One area that needs such reexamination is the informal sector. The present paper reviews government policy towards the informal sector and its role in development in Kenya from the 1970s up to the present time. After defining the informal sector and outlining the characteristics and rationalization of informal sector activities in development planning, the author notes that within a period of less than two decades, public policy in Kenya has shifted from disapproval and neglect of the informal sector to positive recognition and, most recently, active support. The dilemma of public policy and informal sector development lies in the need to reconcile two objectives: facilitating the integration of the informal sector into the national economy and progressively extending measures of regulation to it, while at the same time enhancing its capacity to absorb labour and generate incomes. The author argues that these twin objectives can be realized so long as policymakers attempt to maximize both the employment creating potential of the informal sector and the degree of social protection and regulation extended to it. Bibliogr., sum.