This workshop is jointly organized by the International Food Policy Research Institute’s (IFPRI’s) Strengthening Institutions and Governance (SIG) group and the CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM) led by IFPRI.
High quality rural governance has the potential to significantly improve the productivity and welfare of the poor—70 percent of whom live in rural areas. Government has at least two important roles: providing services and supporting economic activity through good economic governance. Important rural services include infrastructure and agricultural and social services. Good economic governance entails supporting formal and informal institutions that promote economic activity and transactions by protecting property rights and enforcing contracts. However, rural governments in developing countries often fail in these roles. Service providers often lack full information on the preferences and needs of service users, and may also lack incentives to exert effort and refrain from corruption. Weak local institutions fail to support economic activity and foster distrust in government.
This workshop aims to shed light on whether and how greater access to information stemming from institutional or technological innovations can improve rural service delivery and governance. It brings together a diverse group of researchers who will present work examining a variety of different services and aspects of rural governance and exchange feedback.