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Publications (27)

Lant Pritchett - Lant Pritchett, 2021

The tragedy for the Afghan people of the Taliban re-taking control of the country in August 2021 is the denouement of a process 20 years in the making. The sudden collapse of the Afghan government and the national security forces over the course of a few days is not a “surprise” to...

This peer-reviewed research is available free of charge. UNU-WIDER believes that research is a global public good and supports Open Access.
– Evidence, Analysis, Action
Matt Andrews, Lant Pritchett, Michael Woolcock - Oxford University Press, 2017

This is an open access title available under the terms of a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence. It is free to read at Oxford Scholarship Online and offered as a free PDF download from OUP and selected open access locations. Governments play a major role in the development process, and constantly...

Working Paper pdf
– An Alternative Approach to Theory, Measurement and Practice
Michael Woolcock - UNU-WIDER, 2014 - Helsinki, Finland

The coherence and effectiveness of engagement with the world’s ‘fragile and conflict-affected states’—beyond ethical imperatives and geo-strategic considerations—turns on answers to two vexing questions. First, on what defensible basis is any given country, at any...

Working Paper pdf
Matt Andrews - UNU-WIDER, 2014 - Helsinki, Finland

Many public sector reforms in developing countries fail to make governments more functional. This is typically because reforms introduce new solutions that do not fit the contexts in which they are being placed. This situation reflects what has recently been called the ‘capability trap...

Research Brief pdf
UNU -WIDER - UNU-WIDER, 2014 - Helsinki, Finland

The five Paris principles of effective aid were only nominally successfully implemented in the state-building process of South Sudan. While the importance of the first principle, ownership, was highlighted in development plans in Southern Sudan, capacity limitations...

Working Paper pdf
Robin Biddulph - UNU-WIDER, 2014 - Helsinki, Finland

This paper presents the case of World Bank support to the mass titling component of the Cambodia Land Management and Administration Project. This was a project for which there was clear national demand, as evidenced by the fact that the Cambodian government had already attempted to implement mass...

Working Paper pdf
– Concepts, with Examples from India
Lant Pritchett - UNU-WIDER, 2014 - Helsinki, Finland

The incredibly low levels of learning and the generally dysfunctional public sector schooling systems in many (though not all) developing countries are the result of a capability trap (Pritchett et al. 2010). Two phenomena reinforce persistent failure of schooling systems to produce adequate...

Working Paper pdf
– A Reform Case for Instruction
Alejandro Fajardo, Matt Andrews - UNU-WIDER, 2014 - Helsinki, Finland

The city of Medellín, Colombia was a cauldron of violence with 185 homicides per 100,000 people in 2002. By 2006, this rate had declined to 32.5. Such successful transformation was termed the ‘Medellín miracle’ and credited to policies of the city’s mayor, Sergio Fajardo. Fajardo...

Working Paper pdf
– The Road from the Paris Declaration to the Reality of Juba, 2005-11
Greg Larson - UNU-WIDER, 2013 - Helsinki, Finland

During Sudan’s ‘interim period’ from the end of civil war in January 2005 until South Sudan’s independence in July 2011, foreign development agencies provided extensive support and billions of dollars in aid—for which institutional development and capacity building of...

Matt Andrews, Lant Pritchett - World Development, 2013

Many development initiatives fail to improve performance because they promote isomorphic mimicry—governments change what they look like, not what they do. This article proposes a new approach to doing development, Problem-Driven Iterative Adaptation (PDIA), which contrasts with standard...

Working Paper pdf
– Building a State with Disruptive Innovation
Greg Larson, Peter Biar Ajak, Lant Pritchett - UNU-WIDER, 2013 - Helsinki, Finland

The prevailing aid orthodoxy works well enough in stable environments, but is ill-equipped to navigate contexts of volatility and fragility. The orthodox approach is adept at solving straightforward technical or logistical problems (paving roads, building schools, immunizing children), but often...

Working Paper pdf
Matt Andrews - UNU-WIDER, 2013 - Helsinki, Finland

Public sector reforms are commonplace in developing countries. Much of the literature about these reforms reflects on their failures. This paper asks about the successes and investigates which of two competing theories best explain why some reforms exhibit such positive deviance. These theories are...

Working Paper pdf
Matt Andrews, Lawrence Bategeka - UNU-WIDER, 2013 - Helsinki, Finland

This paper begins by noting that Uganda has been a public sector reform leader in Africa. It has pursued reforms actively and consistently for three decades now, and has produced many laws, processes and structures that are ‘best in class’ in Africa (and beyond). The problem is that...

Working Paper pdf
Michael Woolcock - UNU-WIDER, 2013 - Helsinki, Finland

Rising standards for accurately inferring the impact of development projects has not been matched by equivalently rigorous procedures for guiding decisions about whether and how similar results might be expected elsewhere. These ‘external validity’ concerns are especially pressing for...

Displaying 16 of 27 results.