Country Benin
Region Africa
Duration Start 15 October, 2021 till 31 December, 2024
Field of expertise Involving Citizens in Decision Making
Policy field(s) Local economic development
Partners ALCRER, ASSoc. LUTTE CONTRE RACISME, Ethnocentrism
Funding Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands
Project code 11452
The PartiCiP program, phases I and II, has created a dynamic for participatory democracy and has made major progress on this issue of decentralisation. It is now time to put these achievements in the exercise of grassroots democracy at the service of the second challenge of decentralisation: local development. The implementation of a third phase of PartiCiP will thus make it possible to work on the two issues of decentralisation by focusing on local development, which will benefit from the gains of participatory democracy (with its corollary of improved governance) that are being consolidated.

The ultimate change targeted by the PartiCiP in Local Economic Development (LED) is entitled 'accelerated local economic development supported by transparent and inclusive governance'. Specifically, the program aims to put the achievements and successes/best practices of participatory democracy and transparent and inclusive governance in the communes of intervention at the service of local economic development. This explains the three components around which PartiCiP to LED is structured:

• Component 1: "Citizen Voices”
• Component 2: "Accountability and the fight against impunity”
• Component 3: "Valuing Economic Potential”

The targeted changes to obtain good governance-supported LED:
- Presence of CSOs in decision-making bodies and capacity for dialogue
- Transparency and accountability in the economic development process
- Pilot initiatives for economic capacity building and knowledge sharing
- Strengthening of stakeholder support through the visibility of program results

It is therefore a matter of mobilizing communes, local economic operators, local entrepreneurs, State actors and CSOs around the challenges of an inclusive LED, making the most of local potential and resources, and creating favorable framework conditions that positively impact all actors in the LED chain, for example, by adopting various communal strategic documents (PDL, PAD, PAI, PDS) in response to community requests, setting up LED forums for regular consultations, and launching LED initiatives with the contribution of various funds available at the national level. The key to institutional sustainability is the choice of a "learning by doing" approach with support to communes and CSOs in all stages of the governance cycle, in combination with the implementation of concrete initiatives.
To this end, Component 3 of the program will ensure that the target communes are accompanied (by coaching) in:

1. the updating of development planning tools to take into account the identification and enhancement of the economic potential of the territories;
2. the identification of pilot LED initiatives in the development territories covered by the program (initiatives to enhance the potential of water and LED, land and LED, agriculture and LED, tourism and LED),
3. The implementation of structuring initiatives for the promotion of LED,
4. Learning and knowledge dissemination processes;
5. processes for connecting small entrepreneurs to the Market Information System and to secure markets for products and by-products.

This component will be implemented in five (05) communes, namely: Zè, Sô-Ava, Abomey-Calavi, Porto-Novo and Sèmè-Podji.