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Title: Problematizing the interplay between decentralized governance and the urban in asia
Authors: Miller, M.A. 
Bunnell, T.
Keywords: Asia
Issue Date: 2013
Citation: Miller, M.A., Bunnell, T. (2013). Problematizing the interplay between decentralized governance and the urban in asia. Pacific Affairs 86 (4) : 715-729. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Asia is the most populous and rapidly urbanizing region in the world today and features 23 of the world's 40 biggest metropolitan areas. In many Asian countries, accelerated economic development, industrialization and urbanization have been accompanied by a growing acceptance that decentralization (the devolution of central state powers, responsibilities and resources to the sub-national scale)4 can lead to more effective and responsive governance in state, provincial, city and regency jurisdictions. This trend toward decentralized governance in Asia has often, but not always, been precipitated by a transition away from authoritarian regimes to more democratic forms of governance. Discourses about the desirability of democratic decentralization have typically emphasized the devolution of central state authority as the preferred means by which to empower communities and to increase the voice and participation of ordinary citizens in governmental decision-making processes that affect their lives and livelihoods. Thus, decentralization policies in urbanizing Asia have aimed to encourage the active involvement of urban residents in addressing shared dilemmas concerning issues such as environmental sustainability, public service delivery, community building and socio-political stability in often densely concentrated and ethnically diverse populations. At the same time, however, decentralization within the contexts of globalization and privatization may circumvent critical aspects of democratic procedure if sub-national government officials use their increased access to state power and resources to nurture clientelistic networks of patronage and/or to tap into wider circles of regional or global economic activity at the expense of local urban development. © Pacific Affairs. All rights reserved.
Source Title: Pacific Affairs
ISSN: 0030851X
DOI: 10.5509/2013864715
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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