The politics of what works in service delivery: an evidence-based review

Research output: Working paper

Colleges, School and Institutes


This paper examines the evidence on the forms of politics likely to promote inclusive social provisioning and enable, as opposed to constrain, improvements in service outcomes. It focuses on eight relatively successful cases of delivery in a range of country contexts and sectors (roads, agriculture, health, education) where independent evaluations demonstrate improved outcomes. The paper traces the main characteristics of the political environment for these cases, from the national political context, to the politics of sector policymaking, to the micro politics of implementation. The findings indicate that it is possible to identify connections between good performance and better outcomes at the point of delivery and the main forms of politics operating at local, sector and national levels. A number of common factors underpinning successful delivery emerge strongly but need to be tested through further research.


Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationManchester
PublisherEffective States and Inclusive Development Research Centre
Number of pages44
ISBN (Print)9781908749017
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Publication series

NameESID Working Papers
PublisherEffective States and Inclusive Development Research Centre