Blog » Community-Driven Development Myths and Realities - Susan Wong and Scott Guggenheim

Community-Driven Development Myths and Realities - Susan Wong and Scott Guggenheim

Created Jun 18 2018, 5:37 PM by Evan Samuel Caplan
  • General Materials (Basics, Summaries)

Read this new World Bank Working Paper "Community-Driven Development Myths and Realities" by CDD Global Lead Susan Wong and Scott Guggenheim, published May 2018. 

This paper examines what the evidence shows about the utility of community-driven development programs for helping governments improve the lives and futures of the poor. The paper also addresses recent critiques of the community-driven development approach. The paper makes three main arguments. First, community-driven development offers governments a useful new tool for improving the lives of the poor. The empirical evidence from evaluations confirms that community-driven development programs provide much needed productive economic infrastructure and services at large scale, reasonable cost, and high quality. They also provide villagers, especially the disadvantaged, with a voice in how development funds are used to improve their welfare. Second, community-driven development programs are not a homogeneous category, and it is important to acknowledge the differences between national, on-budget, multi-year programs, and off-budget programs. And finally, community-driven development works best and achieves the greatest results when it is part of a broader development strategy that includes reforms to governance, investments in productivity, and integration with efforts to improve the quality of public service delivery