The case of waste management in Myanmar. This article aims to provide a panoramic view of the potential of decentralisation reforms for the improvement of essential service delivery and the promotion of democratic, transparent and accountable governance.

Myanmar MAGIC 1The MAGIC project - Municipal Accountability, Governance and Inclusive Communities - in Myanmar, supports an innovative approach to local governance as a vehicle for the improvement of selected public services. This approach can be used to strengthen any decentralised public service such as education, health, social protection, agriculture and the promotion of rural and urban development.

Suggested readers for this article are donors, development agencies and international NGOs who can benefit from this methodology and experience developed and implemented by VNG International and Loka Ahlinn Social Development Network (LASDN).

The MAGIC roadmap is an approach to improve quality of service delivery of local governments. It is developed and piloted in the MAGIC project. It is tested in a particular service to pilot specific cases of how municipalities can – step by step - improve their service delivery, in this case, waste management. The model presents two main dimensions; firstly, it focusses on technical capacities of the municipalities, e.g. planning, finance and income generation regarding waste management, and secondly it develops soft systems capacities for citizens’ engagement and related accountability and transparency.

Myanmar MAGIC 2

Sections 2, 3 and 4 explain briefly the MAGIC project, its relevance in general and in the context of the COVID-19 health and economic crisis. The second part (sections 5 and 6) explain the MAGIC roadmap and the application of the steps in the context of good governance illustrated with examples. Sections 7 and 8 cover the experience of introducing the MAGIC Roadmap in terms of process facilitation and technical assistance, including training. It concludes with some notes on the potential of the Roadmap and recommendations for donors and INGOs interested in funding and strengthening municipalities.

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