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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Planning realities in the Northern Region: a ground level perspective
Authors:Olsen, Dan
Jimenez, N.
Hiscock, J.
Gourley, G.I.
Periodical:Journal of Local Government Studies (ISSN 2026-5840)
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:regional planning
local government
development cooperation
rural development
Decentralization in government
Ghana--Economic policy
Abstract:This paper presents observations on local governance and aid effectiveness in Ghana's Northern Region. Many factors affect the functioning of district assemblies. The paper explores three core problems that combine to create a difficult environment for effective planning by district assemblies. First, the tendency of donors to collaborate with district assemblies through workshops and development projects to achieve both poverty reduction and capacity development goals is problematic. These goals, when combined in the same project, are contradictory in their means and focus, and impede the ability of the project to achieve its objectives. The second observation highlights the structural disincentives and the lack of incentives that conspire to restrict district planning officers in their ability to create meaningful plans for the development of their districts. Finally, donor activities and coordination of their projects with other donors and district assemblies is often lacking. This results in overlapping and redundant projects at the district level and discourages district employees because of the perceived lack of responsiveness to their concerns by donor partners. The paper is prepared by Engineers Without Borders (EWB), Canada staff, who have worked closely with 6 districts and the Northern Regional administration since 2006. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]