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The focus of this paper is on the last set of these questions -- that of the capacity and the practice of decentralized infrastructure monitoring. The experience and practice of low, middle and high income countries alike is considered. The paper is organized as follows: the next section, Section 2, defines how infrastructure is defined for purposes here, and then proceeds to discuss where the monitoring of infrastructure fits into the broader activity of decentralized infrastructure management. Section 3 then lays out some of the “pre-conditions” for effective decentralized monitoring of infrastructure, leading to the conclusion that for many developing countries these pre-conditions are not satisfied and, thus, why in order to make useful statements about decentralized monitoring of infrastructure one turns to specific case studies for lessons learned from current practice. Accordingly, Section 4 focuses on a mix of illustrative country practices on governmental monitoring of infrastructure that serve to reinforce the conventional view that though there are core lessons common to all intergovernmental societies, there is no single “best” approach since each country faces different starting and end points to which they aspire. Section 5 reviews selected non-governmental and civil society role in what the paper labels as decentralized “bottom up” monitoring. Concluding comments are provided in Section 6.


International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series #1415, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University

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