Engaging Citizens in Jordan’s Local Government Needs Assessment Process

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Jordan is undertaking ambitious decentralization reforms to place citizens at the heart of local policies and services. This review analyses the main gaps in the current needs assessment process, which aims to mainstream a participatory approach for the design of local development plans and budgetary allocations through a yearly collection and assessment of citizens’ needs. It provides actionable recommendations to strengthen the governance of this process, foster two-way communication and promote stakeholder participation at all stages of the policymaking cycle. The report accompanies the document “Supporting Open Government at the Local Level in Jordan” that aims to equip subnational public officials with the relevant knowledge and skills to mainstream transparency, integrity, accountability, and stakeholder participation into the functioning and machinery of local administrations.



Local governments – regional, provincial, and municipal –have a direct impact on people’s daily lives and are essential to building more open and inclusive societies. Not only are local governments often responsible for the delivery of crucial services, but they also play an intermediary role between public and national administrations. Given their proximity to citizens, they are often more present, and have a better understanding of public priorities and of differences in needs. Implementing reforms at the local level may therefore offer the greatest opportunity to transform the relationship between the government and its citizens by providing meaningful and direct opportunities to participate in public life.


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