Country Tunisia
Region Africa
Duration Start 7 November, 2018 till 31 October, 2022
Field of expertise Involving Citizens in Decision Making
Policy field(s) Public policy and planning
Community development
Local economic development
Smart City / Urban planning
Partners CILG-VNG International
Funding Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands
Project code 11403
The wider objective of the project is to support the decentralisaiton process in Tunisia.

The specific objectives are linked to the three components of the programme: Decentralisation (Outcome 1), Local Economic Development (Outcome 2) and Participation & Accountability (Outcome 3).

The project will contribute to a framework for taking the decentralisation process a step ahead. This effective and operational framework should enable the decentralisation process in a way that furthers social cohesion. This would be possible with the Ministry of Local affairs and the Environment (MoLAE) fulfilling its mandate as a driver and conflict preventer in the decentralisation process. The transfer of the competency of urban planning from the Ministry of Equipment to the municipalities – as defined in the Code des Collectivités Locales – will be accompanied too. As decentralisation is a multi-actors process and there is a risk of divergence and conflict between actors, the project aims at setting a functioning mechanism for constructive and social peace building multi-stakeholder dialogue. For the same reasons of social peace and in order to make the decentralisation credibly profitable for all citizens, the assistance to the reforms will consider that the operational framework of decentralization must reflect the specific needs of women, youth and disenfranchised groups.

Furthermore, the project aims to get a more rights-based, more conflict sensitive approach to service delivery of the ground in the target municipalities, while still looking at classical data on services' coverage, accessibility, efficiency and quality. Two main competencies of municipalities will be considered: public spaces and waste management. These two competencies have an important impact on the living environment of citizens. The project will also make sure that this improvement of municipal services will specifically address the needs of women, youth and disenfranchised groups. In addition to improved and inclusive service delivery, the project aims at helping municipalities generate better opportunities for local economic development and job creation. A better living environment is not only a matter of services but should also include the way to improve local economic conditions and job creation, as an alternative for youth limiting illegal migration and reducing the risks of radicalisation.

The project aims at consolidating a social cohesion/social contract dynamic between citizens and local governments. This essentially aims to improve of the performance of municipal participatory and accountability frameworks – and with it especially the participation of women, youth and disenfranchised groups. This is based on the idea that both the 'demand' and the 'supply' of accountability need to be there for something meaningful to happen. Apart from the dialogue tables and the mechanisms, we will look to urban planning and concrete pilots of component 2 to provide substance that local accountability can coalesce around.

The expected results of the project are:
(i) An effective operational framework for decentralisation is in place
(ii) The living environment for all citizens is improved enhancing territorial belonging and discouraging illegal migration and radicalisation among youth
(iii) Constructive engagement for social cohesion between citizens and local governments is consolidated