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Decentralisation (Decentralization) in Burma/Myanmar

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Title: Local Governance Mapping: - What is Local Governance Mapping in Myanmar?
Date of publication: 2014
Description/subject: States and Regions Covered:- Chin: This report presents the findings from the Local Governance Mapping conducted in Chin State between December 2013 and January 2014... Mon: This report presents the findings from the Local Governance Mapping conducted in Mon State between December 2013 and January 2014... Ayeyarwady: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Ayeyarwady Region in May 2014... Kayin: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping research conducted by UNDP in Kayin State between February and June 2014... Tanintharyi: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Tanintharyi Region in June 2014 Bago: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Bago Region between February and June 2014... Kayah: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Kayah State between April and August 2014... Magway: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Magway Region in November-December 2014... Mandalay: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Mandalay Region between August and November 2014... Yangon: This report sets out to map the state of affairs and the evolution over the past years with regards to governance reform in Yangon Region... Rakhine: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by the UNDP in collaboration with the General Administration department (GAD) under Ministry of Home Affairs in Rakhine State in 2014... Kachin: This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by the UNDP in partnership with the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) in Kachin State from November 2014 to January 2015... Sagaing: The report on the Sagaing Region of Myanmar is part of a national local governance mapping conducted by UNDP in collaboration with the Government of Myanmar... The State of Local Governance: Trends in Shan: This report aims to map the state of affairs and the evolution as witnessed over the past few years with regards to governance reforms and service delivery in the Shan State..... Local Governance Mapping Related Documents: Fast Facts: Local Governance Mapping Methodology - Eng (2.1 MB); MM (1.8 MB)... Fast Facts: Local Governance Mapping Sampling strategy - Eng (1.4 MB) MM (182.0 kB).
Language: English, Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2016


Title: Region and State Government
Description/subject: Region and State Government - analysis... Region and State Hluttaws (Assemblies) - proceedings 2012... Region and State Hluttaws (Assemblies) - proceedings 2011.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Region and State Hluttaws
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Individual Documents

Title: Regional Parliamentarians Lament Continued Govt Centralization
Date of publication: 09 September 2016
Description/subject: "Burma’s civilian-led government recently marked five months since the transfer of power from the country’s previous, military-backed administration. The Irrawaddy explored the ongoing challenges facing regional parliamentarians in the new system by surveying six National League for Democracy (NLD) lawmakers from Pegu, Irrawaddy and Rangoon division parliaments, and six representatives from parliaments in ethnic states, including those serving in the Arakan National Party (ANP), the Kachin State Democracy Party (KSDP), the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD) and the once-ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP). In interviews, parliamentarians discussed and reflected on the first official 100 days in their divisional legislatures, a period which ended in August. Regional lawmakers revealed a struggle surrounding limited transparency and a sense of helplessness they attribute to continued centralization in the country’s young government..."
Author/creator: Moe Myint
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 11 September 2016


Title: Regional parliaments rising to the challenge
Date of publication: 22 July 2016
Description/subject: "Early signs from the Yangon Hluttaw suggest that the state and region parliaments will do a better job of holding local governments to account than their predecessors...Myanmar's state and regional legislatures have been slow to find their feet during the country’s transition. While lawmakers in Nay Pyi Taw cut ministry budgets and reshaped draft legislation, the 14 sub-national parliaments have been largely bit players in the reform process. Rarely have they challenged the state and region governments on which they are supposed to exercise oversight. The Yangon Region Hluttaw is a case in point. Over the past five years it largely acted as a rubber stamp for the regional government, signing off on budget requests and bills, and ignoring widespread complaints about service delivery and unpopular projects. Scrutiny was minimal, and brought to bear by only a handful of mostly opposition MPs. But the sub-national legislatures are important institutions for political decentralisation, which is a key issue in negotiations toward a peace settlement and broader reconciliation with ethnic minorities. They also play a significant role in service delivery in urban areas, as they approve municipal budgets and enact laws for local elections. So is the role of these new lawmaking bodies likely to develop over the coming five years? And what are the early indications from the Yangon parliament? Before considering these questions, it’s important to understand some of the reasons behind why the Yangon hluttaw and other sub-national legislatures were largely ineffective over the past five years..."
Author/creator: Hein Ko Soe & Thomas Kean
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Frontier Myanmar"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 22 July 2016


Title: Myanmar’s Local Governance Reform Challenges
Date of publication: 08 June 2016
Description/subject: "As Myanmar’s new government begins defining its reform policies, arguably the biggest need is for good governance. Following decades of centralized military dictatorship, the country confronts dual challenges of trying to loosen the military’s grip on public administration as well as push government agencies to be more accountable and deliver better social services. Where the legacies of dictatorship overlap most significantly with hopes for change is in terms of local governance, namely the basic public administration of Myanmar’s districts and townships..."
Author/creator: Matthew Arnold
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: html (106K)
Date of entry/update: 08 August 2016


Title: Calls for More Women in Peace Process on European Study Tour
Date of publication: 02 May 2016
Description/subject: "...Bringing more women into Burma’s peace process and construction of a federal state is crucial, several of the country’s female leaders said during a training tour in Europe last month. The women have played various roles in Burma’s peace process and were invited to Switzerland and Norway to learn more about federalism, peace and security issues, and women’s empowerment. Both European countries are staunch supporters of conflict resolution in Burma. The participants reflected on how a political dialogue could be conducted in Burma and how federalism could enrich the country’s young democracy. Naw Zipporah Sein, the vice chair of the Karen National Union (KNU), an ethnic armed organization that signed the nationwide ceasefire agreement with the government last year, said: “A federal system is best-suited to Burma to ensure equality and democratic rights.” “Our public needs to understand how to share power, resources and tax revenue,” she said. “Participation from the people in these core aspects of the federal state is essential.” Meanwhile, Burma’s State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi said last Wednesday that the government was planning to hold a 21st century “Panglong-style” conference within the next two months, referring to a 1947 agreement Suu Kyi’s father, Gen. Aung San, forged with several major ethnic minorities..."
Author/creator: Nyein Nyein
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 02 May 2016


Title: Local Economic Governance in Myanmar (Burmese မန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 22 February 2016
Description/subject: "Local economic governance is a critical dimension in Myanmar's drive to reform, decentralize and achieve more inclusive and stable development. How businesses and individuals engage with the government in their income and revenue generation efforts and creating employment in the local communities in the process is pertinent to larger economic reforms that are being implemented and further proposed by government and experts. In the context of a country coming out of decades of military rule, any reform that can lead to greater transparency, fairness, and improved state-society relations will contribute significantly to the country's long term democratic transition and economic prosperity. More specifically, reforming economic governance at the local level is essential if the benefits of Myanmar's transition are to reach the majority of the country's people."
Author/creator: Jared Bissinger
Language: (Burmese မန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (3.8MB-reduced version; 4.39-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/LocalEconomicGovernanceinMyanmarMM.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 March 2016


Title: Local Economic Governance in Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: 22 February 2016
Description/subject: "Local economic governance is a critical dimension in Myanmar's drive to reform, decentralize and achieve more inclusive and stable development. How businesses and individuals engage with the government in their income and revenue generation efforts and creating employment in the local communities in the process is pertinent to larger economic reforms that are being implemented and further proposed by government and experts. In the context of a country coming out of decades of military rule, any reform that can lead to greater transparency, fairness, and improved state-society relations will contribute significantly to the country's long term democratic transition and economic prosperity. More specifically, reforming economic governance at the local level is essential if the benefits of Myanmar's transition are to reach the majority of the country's people."
Author/creator: Jared Bissinger
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (614K-reduced version; 750K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/LocalEconomicGovernanceinMyanmarENG.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 March 2016


Title: Schooling and Conflict: Ethnic Education and Mother Tongue-based Teaching in Myanmar (Burmese မန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 22 February 2016
Description/subject: "Education and language policies and practices are at the heart of ethnic conflicts in Myanmar. For decades, the state has emphasized a centralized, Myanmar language only education system that many ethnic groups felt provided no place for their own languages to be practiced which by extension, threatened their cultures and ethnic identities. The country's democratic transition of the past few years, however, has enabled issues of mother tongue-based education (MTB) to be discussed more openly, and growing acceptance of decentralization within the government at all levels and among the wider public is providing an opening for consideration of how MTB education can be productively integrated into the education system. In this context, The Foundation is pleased to present this research report on the state of MTB education in contested areas in Myanmar, specifically in the Kachin, Mon and Karen context, by Ashley South and Marie Lall who have long been engaged in researching this important topic."
Author/creator: Ashley South and Marie Lall
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (3.1MB-reduced version; 4.39K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/SchoolingConflictMM.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 March 2016


Title: Schooling and Conflict: Ethnic Education and Mother Tongue-based Teaching in Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: 22 February 2016
Description/subject: "Education and language policies and practices are at the heart of ethnic conflicts in Myanmar. For decades, the state has emphasized a centralized, Myanmar language only education system that many ethnic groups felt provided no place for their own languages to be practiced which by extension, threatened their cultures and ethnic identities. The country's democratic transition of the past few years, however, has enabled issues of mother tongue-based education (MTB) to be discussed more openly, and growing acceptance of decentralization within the government at all levels and among the wider public is providing an opening for consideration of how MTB education can be productively integrated into the education system. In this context, The Foundation is pleased to present this research report on the state of MTB education in contested areas in Myanmar, specifically in the Kachin, Mon and Karen context, by Ashley South and Marie Lall who have long been engaged in researching this important topic."
Author/creator: Ashley South and Marie Lall
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (1.8MB-reduced version; 4.35MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/SchoolingConflictENG.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 March 2016


Title: Sharing the Wealth: A Roadmap for Distributing Myanmar’s Natural Resource Revenues
Date of publication: 15 February 2016
Description/subject: "Myanmar's Union government collects much of the trillions of kyat generated by oil, gas, gemstones and other minerals each year, primarily through its state-owned economic enterprises (SEEs). In the face of such centralized control over revenue, many ethnic groups have long asserted their right to make decisions over resource management in their states. Combatants in areas of active conflict and leaders from several ethnic minority parties—particularly those associated with Kachin, Rakhine and Shan states—have openly called for greater resource revenue sharing. (See map below for more on Myanmar’s extractive geography.) In response, the newly elected National League for Democracy (NLD) has committed to "work to ensure a fair distribution across the country of the profits from natural resource extraction, in accordance with the principles of a federal union." As such, a resource revenue sharing system will undoubtedly be on the table in the upcoming discussion on federalism. However, as we have seen in other countries, these systems come with considerable risks. In the most extreme cases, such as Peru, they can actually exacerbate conflict, encouraging local leaders to use violence to compel greater transfers from the central government or gain control over mine sites. While these experiences are atypical, natural resource revenue sharing often leads to financial waste, local inflation, boom-bust cycles and poor public investment decisions. However, if well designed, resource revenue sharing can: improve development outcomes and the quality of public investment; attract high quality private investors to the sector; and help secure a lasting peace. Sharing the Wealth: A Roadmap for Distributing Myanmar's Natural Resource Revenues outlines options available under the current legal structure to help the new leadership fulfill its commitment to decentralize natural resource revenues. It is also meant to inform Myanmar's broader discourse on how best to distribute these revenues. First, it outlines the current state of fiscal decentralization in Myanmar. Second, it describes the size and location of extractive activities given the limited information currently available. Third, it aims to share good practices for revenue distribution and international experiences. Fourth, it outlines policy options and considerations for policymakers on intergovernmental transfers and addresses the debate on tax assignments..."
Author/creator: Andrew Bauer, Paul Shortell and Lorenzo Delesgues
Language: English
Source/publisher: Natural Resource Governance Institute
Format/size: pdf (2.4MB-reduced version; 12MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.resourcegovernance.org/sites/default/files/documents/nrgi_sharing_myanmar_revenue-sharin...
http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs22/nrgi_sharing_myanmar_revenue-sharing.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 April 2016


Title: Breaking the Curse - Decentralizing Natural Resource Management in Myanmar (Burmese ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: February 2016
Description/subject: Summary: "In 2008, Myanmar’s military rulers ratified a new constitution that ensured their continued monopoly of the country’s natural resources. Section 37 (a) states: “the Union is the ultimate owner ofall lands and all natural resources above and below the ground, above and beneath the water and in the atmosphere” Under this constitution, the central government in Naypyidaw is not only the owner of all natural resources in the country; it also controls and manages them, enacting “necessary laws for extraction.” This centralized control has had disastrous effects in widening inequality, fueling a cycle of conflict and violence, and depleting non-renewable resources that could be the basis of a sound economy for future generations. Arakan State provides a perfect illustration of this and lies at the heart of one of Myanmar’s most sought after resources: natural gas. The Shwe project now produces 500 million cubic feet of natural gas per day, yet none of this is used to provide electricity in Arakan State. While local communities bear livelihood and environmental destruction, human rights abuses and land confiscation, the gas is sold to China and more than one billion USD annually flows to Naypyidaw. There, accounting of the revenues remains opaque and reinvestment in Arakan’s infrastructure, education, and health is practically non-existent. The state is the second poorest in the country Until now, the military, the central government, and foreign investors have taken advantage of the centralized governance structure and a lack of protection mechanisms to make all the decisions around natural resources and reap most of the benefits. In contrast, devolving the powers to manage resources to lower levels of government will establish political, administrative, and fiscal structures so that decisions around the use of natural resources can be made at local levels with input from affected peoples. This distribution of powers makes natural resource management more accountable to the needs of local communities and will therefore ensure a more sustainable development. Drawing on the Arakan Oil Watch’s decade-long work with communities affected by natural resource investments and experiences from resource-rich countries around the world, we find six critical components to achieve sustainable natural resource management in Myanmar. They are: 1. Build peace: A moratorium on high-value natural resource extraction until political agreements and new legislation have been finalized will reduce tensions and conflict and allow time for protection laws and institutions to be established. Peace 4 agreements that specify division of powers—such as the one in Papua New Guinea—will help prevent conflicts from re- emerging and enable subnational governments to proceed with establishing their own governance structures. 2. Broaden participation: Engaging people in the process of managing their own resources and ensuring that they receive benefits from their resources will prevent resentment and reduce conflicts. Strengthening formal participation, as is done in Latin America with community referendums, will provide immediate input from affected communities and community- based organizations on natural resource projects as well as on long-term planning decisions. 3. Decentralize governance: Transferring significant powers of authority from Naypyidaw to civilian-led state and regional governments through statutory and constitutional provisions will bring decision-making closer to affected people and make development processes more efficient and equitable. 4. Decentralize ownership of natural resources: Amending Section 37 (a) of the national constitution to enable states and regions to own their natural resources will address longstanding calls for more autonomy from ethnic organizations, contributing to long lasting peace. 5. Decentralize control and management of natural resources: Amending Section 37 (b) of the national constitution so that states and regions can control and manage their lands and natural resources, including the decision whether or not non-renewable resources should be extracted. State and regional governments will also then be able to establish appropriate laws and institutions for economic planning, regulation and monitoring of extractive industries, and rights protection for current and future generations. 6. Decentralize collection of natural resource revenues: Providing legislative powers for states and regions to collect significant taxes will enable responsive local governments to manage their own budgets and allocate funds according to local plans and needs, reducing time consuming and costly bureaucracy at the national level, and better serving local populations.".....This Burmese version has been drastically reduced using OCR software, resulting in some blurred text and some pages split in half. We will replace this version if/when we get a better one.
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Arakan Oil Watch
Format/size: pdf (3,2MB-reduced version; 129MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs21/Arakan_Oil_Watch-2016-02-Breaking-the-Curse-bu.pdf
http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs21/Arakan_Oil_Watch-2016-02-Breaking-the-Curse-bu-tu.pdf
http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs21/Arakan_Oil_Watch-2016-02-Breaking-the-Curse-bu-im-bal.pdf
Date of entry/update: 26 March 2016


Title: Breaking the Curse - Decentralizing Natural Resource Management in Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: February 2016
Description/subject: Summary: "In 2008, Myanmar’s military rulers ratified a new constitution that ensured their continued monopoly of the country’s natural resources. Section 37 (a) states: “the Union is the ultimate owner ofall lands and all natural resources above and below the ground, above and beneath the water and in the atmosphere” Under this constitution, the central government in Naypyidaw is not only the owner of all natural resources in the country; it also controls and manages them, enacting “necessary laws for extraction.” This centralized control has had disastrous effects in widening inequality, fueling a cycle of conflict and violence, and depleting non-renewable resources that could be the basis of a sound economy for future generations. Arakan State provides a perfect illustration of this and lies at the heart of one of Myanmar’s most sought after resources: natural gas. The Shwe project now produces 500 million cubic feet of natural gas per day, yet none of this is used to provide electricity in Arakan State. While local communities bear livelihood and environmental destruction, human rights abuses and land confiscation, the gas is sold to China and more than one billion USD annually flows to Naypyidaw. There, accounting of the revenues remains opaque and reinvestment in Arakan’s infrastructure, education, and health is practically non-existent. The state is the second poorest in the country Until now, the military, the central government, and foreign investors have taken advantage of the centralized governance structure and a lack of protection mechanisms to make all the decisions around natural resources and reap most of the benefits. In contrast, devolving the powers to manage resources to lower levels of government will establish political, administrative, and fiscal structures so that decisions around the use of natural resources can be made at local levels with input from affected peoples. This distribution of powers makes natural resource management more accountable to the needs of local communities and will therefore ensure a more sustainable development. Drawing on the Arakan Oil Watch’s decade-long work with communities affected by natural resource investments and experiences from resource-rich countries around the world, we find six critical components to achieve sustainable natural resource management in Myanmar. They are: 1. Build peace: A moratorium on high-value natural resource extraction until political agreements and new legislation have been finalized will reduce tensions and conflict and allow time for protection laws and institutions to be established. Peace agreements that specify division of powers—such as the one in Papua New Guinea—will help prevent conflicts from re- emerging and enable subnational governments to proceed with establishing their own governance structures... 2. Broaden participation: Engaging people in the process of managing their own resources and ensuring that they receive benefits from their resources will prevent resentment and reduce conflicts. Strengthening formal participation, as is done in Latin America with community referendums, will provide immediate input from affected communities and community- based organizations on natural resource projects as well as on long-term planning decisions... 3. Decentralize governance: Transferring significant powers of authority from Naypyidaw to civilian-led state and regional governments through statutory and constitutional provisions will bring decision-making closer to affected people and make development processes more efficient and equitable. 4. Decentralize ownership of natural resources: Amending Section 37 (a) of the national constitution to enable states and regions to own their natural resources will address longstanding calls for more autonomy from ethnic organizations, contributing to long lasting peace... 5. Decentralize control and management of natural resources: Amending Section 37 (b) of the national constitution so that states and regions can control and manage their lands and natural resources, including the decision whether or not non-renewable resources should be extracted. State and regional governments will also then be able to establish appropriate laws and institutions for economic planning, regulation and monitoring of extractive industries, and rights protection for current and future generations... 6. Decentralize collection of natural resource revenues: Providing legislative powers for states and regions to collect significant taxes will enable responsive local governments to manage their own budgets and allocate funds according to local plans and needs, reducing time consuming and costly bureaucracy at the national level, and better serving local populations."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Arakan Oil Watch
Format/size: pdf (1.2MB-reduced version; 60MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://arakanoilwatch.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Breaking-the-Curse-Eng.pdf
Date of entry/update: 23 March 2016


Title: Women & Local Leadership - Leadership Journeys of Myanmar’s Female Village Tract/Ward Administrators
Date of publication: 30 January 2016
Description/subject: "This report documents leadership journeys of women in local leadership roles in Myanmar, in particular of Myanmar’s small cohort of female village tract/ward administrators (VT/WAs). The report is based on field interviews with 15 female VT/WAs undertaken in June and July 2015, and data from the UNDP Myanmar Local Governance Mapping (LGM) conducted between late 2013 and early 2015. Complementing previous studies on social norms and women’s participation in governance in Myanmar, in this report the lives of a number of existing local female leaders and their experiences with local election and leadership take center stage, granting insight in how barriers to women’s participation can be overcome and female local leadership can be expanded..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (2.1MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs21/UNDP_Women_and_Local_Leadership.pdf
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2016


Title: Local Development Funds in Myanmar (Burmese မန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 29 January 2016
Description/subject: "Since 2011, Myanmar has embarked on a series of development reforms to promote a more "people centered" and "bottom-up" approach to government planning and budgeting. Inter alia, these reforms have led to the establishment of Local Development Funds (LDFs) to identify and fund community development projects. LDFs in Myanmar, and the government institutions that manage them, are both recently formed and evolving at a rapid pace. To date, little research on these funds has been conducted. The objectives of this study are to: provide a general understanding of international best practice and common uses for LDFs, assess how community needs are identified and aligned with LDFs in Myanmar, provide an overview of the most relevant LDFs in Myanmar, and give some analysis of how these funds impact fiscal decentralization and local development planning."
Author/creator: Bart Robertson, Cindy Joelene and Lauren Dunn
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI/CESD
Format/size: pdf (1.45MB-reduced version; 2.55MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/LocalDevelopmentFundsMyanmar.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 March 2016


Title: Local Development Funds in Myanmar - An Initial Review
Date of publication: 27 October 2015
Description/subject: "Since 2011, Myanmar has embarked on a series of development reforms to promote a more "people centered" and "bottom-up" approach to government planning and budgeting. Inter alia, these reforms have led to the establishment of Local Development Funds (LDFs) to identify and fund community development projects. LDFs in Myanmar, and the government institutions that manage them, are both recently formed and evolving at a rapid pace. To date, little research on these funds has been conducted. The objectives of this study are to: provide a general understanding of international best practice and common uses for LDFs, assess how community needs are identified and aligned with LDFs in Myanmar, provide an overview of the most relevant LDFs in Myanmar, and give some analysis of how these funds impact fiscal decentralization and local development planning."
Author/creator: Bart Robertson, Cindy Joelene and Lauren Dunn
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI/CESD
Format/size: pdf (1.1MB-reduced version; 2.61MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/LocalDevelopmentFundsENG.pdf
Date of entry/update: 09 November 2015


Title: State and Region Public Finances in Myanmar - Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 13 October 2015
Description/subject: "This paper focuses on understanding the role of state and region governments in relation to Myanmar's public finances. This has been done to take stock of existing research, better understand the composition of subnational finances, and attempt to address whether, at this point in the fiscal decentralization process, state and region governments have sufficient resources to fulfil their constitutionally delegated responsibilities. Recognizing the complex and varied factors relevant to addressing these questions, a range of qualitative and quantitative approaches were employed, including semi-structured interviews of stakeholders, consultation with sector experts and analysis of published budget and socioeconomic data."
Author/creator: Giles Dickenson-Jones, S Kanay De, and Andrea Smurra
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI/CESD, IGC
Format/size: pdf (1.8MB-reduced version; 3.2MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/SRPublicFinancesMM.pdf
Date of entry/update: 09 November 2015


Title: DEEPENING DEMOCRACY IN MYANMAR
Date of publication: September 2015
Description/subject: "What role for public financial management in deepening social accountability and promoting legitimate governance?...This discussion paper outlines so me of the challenges and opportunities for public financial management (PFM) reform in contributing to deeper social accountability and legitimate governance in the context of Myanmar’s wider decentralization and peace process. The paper poses a set of key questions for development actors to consider as they seek to support inclusive reform in Myanmar..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: OXFAM
Format/size: pdf (443K)
Date of entry/update: 10 October 2015


Title: State and Region Public Finances in Myanmar
Date of publication: September 2015
Description/subject: "This paper focuses on understanding the role of state and region governments in relation to Myanmar's public finances. This has been done to take stock of existing research, better understand the composition of subnational finances, and attempt to address whether, at this point in the fiscal decentralization process, state and region governments have sufficient resources to fulfil their constitutionally delegated responsibilities. Recognizing the complex and varied factors relevant to addressing these questions, a range of qualitative and quantitative approaches were employed, including semi-structured interviews of stakeholders, consultation with sector experts and analysis of published budget and socioeconomic data."
Author/creator: Giles Dickenson-Jones, S Kanay De, and Andrea Smurra September 2015
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI/CESD. IGC
Format/size: pdf (2.1MB-reduced version; 3MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/SRPublicFinancesENG.pdf
Date of entry/update: 08 November 2015


Title: Municipal Governance in Myanmar - An overview of Development Affairs Organizations
Date of publication: July 2015
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Myanmar is undergoing governance reforms of historic significance, resulting in changes to subnational and local governance, decentralization, and the nature of central-local relations. Traditionally, Myanmar has been an agrarian society but urban areas are increasingly important—with almost a third of the population now residing in cities and towns. In this context, municipal governance is assuming greater importance to the country’s development and political transition. While the 2008 Constitution and subsequent reforms have delegated some functions to the 14 newly-established state and region governments and established new mechanisms at the township level, Myanmar remains a highly centralized state. However, municipal governance is a nascent exception to this. All of Myanmar’s townships now have Development Affairs Organizations (DAOs) (si-bin tha-ya-ye apwe in the Myanmar language) which are important urban agencies with responsibilities for providing a significant range of social services and for overseeing local economic governance. The key characteristics of DAOs are as follows: * They are the only fully decentralized government agencies under the control of state and region governments. * They are unique as they are fully self-funded, must use their revenues in the township where they were collected, and they have significant discretion over revenue use. Every other subnational governance actor receives its budget one way or another from the Union Government. * They are major social service providers, providing services that range from urban water, sewage, garbage collection, roads and bridges, to street lighting and drainage, and they also oversee local economic governance through issuing licenses and permits to local businesses, collecting taxes and fees, and holding auctions to operate local ferries and toll roads. * They are the only local government actors overseen by a dedicated local committee—the Township Development Affairs Committee (TDAC)—which has decision-making power and the majority of its members are elected by the community..."
Author/creator: Matthew Arnold, Ye Thu Aung, Susanne Kempel, and Kyi Pyar Chit Saw
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD (Myanmar Development Resource Institute – Centre for Economic and Social Development)
Format/size: pdf (2MB-reduced version)
Date of entry/update: 13 September 2015


Title: MAPPING THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE IN MYANMAR: Background and Methodology
Date of publication: 03 June 2015
Description/subject: "This report serves as a background and introduction to the 14 State and Region “State of Local Governance” reports prepared by UNDP-Myanmar in collaboration with the General Administration Department (GAD) under the Ministry of Home Affairs. It aims to contextualise the state- and region-specific information provided in each of the individual reports and introduces a framework to look at local governance structures in Myanmar. It also aims to look at local governance comprehensively through various prisms such as historical context and legacies, the constitutional and legal parameters, and service delivery, participation and accountability. In addition, this report introduces and briefly describes the main institutions of local governance, as their specific composition, performance and interrelations are ‘mapped’ in the State and Region specific reports. The overall objective of the Local Governance Mapping is to generate a better understanding of how governance structures at the local level currently function in Myanmar. It also seeks to provide more clarity on the nature, scope and role of local agents, with a focus at the township level, and how the recent reforms have influenced or changed the interactions between citizens and local authorities. Notwithstanding the absence of an overall strategic or legal framework for decentralisation, the government has undertaken several initiatives that are trying to increase the space for citizens in local decision-making. The mapping is an attempt to understand how these initiatives have been perceived by local citizens and what progress has been made in terms of improved service delivery, as well as enhanced transparency and accountability..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP MYANMAR
Format/size: pdf (1.6MB-reduced version; 2.3MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.google.com/url?q=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.mm.undp.org%2Fcontent%2Fdam%2Fmyanmar%2Fdocs%2FPublica...
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2016


Title: Ethnic Armed Conflict and Territorial Administration in Myanmar
Date of publication: June 2015
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Rural and mountainous areas across many of Myanmar’s non-Bamar regions are contested by multiple governance actors with overlapping claims to territory, including: the Myanmar government and armed forces, countless state-backed ethnic militia, and dozens of opposition ethnic armed groups. Many of the varied ethnic armed actors have much deeper relations with local communities than the state does,1 and in numerous cases, have been the only administrative authorities of these regions in the country’s history. Very few of their territories have clearly agreed borders, and none are sanctioned officially by law or in the constitution. While, out of necessity, successive governments have continued to tolerate or even accommodate the role of ethnic armed actors in subnational administration, they have persisted in attempts to design the state around their particular ideal vision of “the Union”, rather than in coordination and compromise with subnational actors. This has resulted in an ongoing failure to establish constitutional arrangements that truly reflect power relations and political realities on the ground. One of the key challenges that must be addressed in the current peace process, therefore, is the nature of subnational administration in these contest areas. Given this challenging environment, The Asia Foundation carried out research in 2015 to examine and compare de jure and de facto administration systems in Myanmar’s conflict-affected areas, and how they relate to longstanding disputes over constitutional arrangements for subnational governance. This report seeks to provide a better understanding of the complex political geography in contested areas, and highlights how challenging it will be to achieve a political solution to conflict. This is of particular importance to international actors, given the heightened interest in supporting the peace process and increasing levels of humanitarian and development assistance to conflict-affected areas..."
Author/creator: Kim Jolliffe
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (3.2MB-reduced version; 4.7MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/ConflictTerritorialAdministrationfullreportENG.pdf
Date of entry/update: 11 September 2015


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN SAGAING
Date of publication: 2015
Description/subject: INTRODUCTION: "Crucial functions of policy analysis and policy implementation require concrete information to inform leadership as they continue to guide the country towards strategic goals. In order to support this process, the Government of Myanmar and UNDP agreed to conduct a local governance mapping. This report is the product of this mapping that captured the extensive input of government officers and staff, committee members, Ward and Village Tract Administrators, citizens, and service providers at the township level, and CSOs in four townships in Sagaing Region. The mapping seeks to examine the perception of governance from a citizen and serviceprovider perspective. It focussed on participation in public sector planning (how certain new laws, funds, and structures were addressing citizens and township priorities in priority areas), access to key basic services and accountability in local governance. Following this introduction and a brief discussion on methodology1 in chapter 2, the report provides an overview of governance institutions in Sagaing Region in chapter 3, including the relatively recent creation of the Naga SAZ and relevant governance and administrative systems. Chapter 4 provides information on the participating townships and Chapter 5 discusses planning processes in these townships, with attention to the linkages between communities and township administrations; the specific opportunities and challenges in the health, education and water supply sectors; and opportunities and challenges for information sharing, transparency and accountability. Chapter 6 closes the report with conclusions on participatory and responsive local governance in Sagaing Region. As such, the report combines information from both the township and community level, along with background information related to governance, planning and budgeting systems critical to inform discussions about identifying priorities and addressing service delivery at township level."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (3.3MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 04 February 2016


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN KAYAH
Date of publication: December 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Kayah State has experienced some important changes over the last few years that have a direct impact on the livelihood situation of its people. Since 2011, the hostilities between the Karenni National Progressive Party and its Karenni Army on the one hand and the Government of Myanmar on the other hand have gradually subsided, resulting in a cease fire agreement that was signed in June 2013 between the two parties. This contributed to a more peaceful situation in the State and led to an intensification of both economic activities and social services provided by the Government. During the same period the Government of Myanmar has made a start with its administrative reform with the objective of improving service delivery, engaging people more actively in governance processes and becoming a “cleaner” government. This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Kayah State. Based on the perceptions of the people and local governance actors, the mapping has tried to capture some key aspects of the current dynamics of governance at the frontline of state-citizen interaction and focuses in its analysis on participation in public sector planning, access to basic services and accountability in local governance. In consultation with the Kayah State government, it was agreed that the Local Governance Mapping would be conducted in three townships, namely, Loikaw, Hpruso and Mese between April and August 2014. Together, these three townships are representative for the diversity in economic activities and living conditions found in Kayah State. Loikaw is the capital Township of Kayah. It is more urban in character, it has by far the largest population of all townships in Kayah State, hosts most State government institutions, and is economically the best developed township in the State. Hpruso Township has a more rural character, is less populated as Loikaw, but since it is easy to reach and close to Loikaw it is relatively prosperous, and basic social services are still easily available. Mese Township finally is the most remote and smallest township in the State with a traditional rural character and a low population density. It has experienced more than any of the other townships the negative impact of the armed conflict in the past and has a result been rather isolated and experienced a backlog in services provided by government, which it is now trying to catch up on..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (2MB)
Alternate URLs: http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/UNDP_MM_LG_Mapping_Kayah_web.pdf
Date of entry/update: 02 February 2015


Title: Public Financial Management in Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: November 2014
Description/subject: "...The 2008 Myanmar Constitution introduced a degree of fiscal decentralization of budgeting and planning functions from the Union government to states and regions. State and region governments now prepare their own budgets and have some authority to collect revenues locally. The total budgets of states and regions has risen accordingly, from less than 4 percent of public spending in the 2013-2014 financial year to nearly 12 percent in 2014-15. While states and regions have full statutory authority to determine budgeting priorities, spending discretion is limited in practice by the Union-level Financial Commission, which ultimately decides how much budget support each state and region will receive from the Union fund through a process that is neither transparent nor based on objective criteria. The overall process of policy-setting, levying, and collecting of revenues is not yet well developed and leaves considerable room for improvement. States and regions may also request additional monies through supplementary budget allocations, a practice which impedes sound budget planning. The benefit of participatory mechanisms on the planning and budgeting process remains limited..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf ( 1MB-reduced version; 3.6MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/MMPublicFinancialManagement.pdf
Date of entry/update: 05 January 2015


Title: Administering the State in Myanmar - An Overview of the General Administration Department (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: October 2014
Description/subject: "Basic administration in Myanmar is provided by the General Administration Department (GAD) of the Ministry of Home Affairs. GAD administrators manage subnational administrative structures stretching from states and regions down to districts, townships and all of the country's approximately 16,700 wards and village tracts. Although the GAD is exceptionally important to governance in Myanmar, particularly at subnational levels, it is also poorly understood, and indeed, rather enigmatic. As the Myanmar government works to implement public sector reform, a better understanding of the GAD is imperative. This paper accordingly details the origins of the GAD and then details its mandates, structures and working processes. The Myanmar Development Resource Institute's Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI-CESD) and The Asia Foundation are pleased to present this sixth volume in the Subnational Governance in Myanmar Discussion Paper Series..."
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ (Metadata: English)
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (1.23MB-reduced version; 2.37MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/GADMyanmar.pdf
Date of entry/update: 05 January 2015


Title: Administering the State in Myanmar - An Overview of the General Administration Department (English)
Date of publication: October 2014
Description/subject: "...The General Administration Department (GAD) of the Ministry of Home Affairs is critically important to subnational governance in Myanmar. The GAD acts as the civil service for the new state and region governments and provides the administration for the country’s districts and townships. Given its pervasive importance as the bureaucratic backbone of the country and its impact on the lives of citizens, it is also surprising that there is little information on how the GAD is organized, its roles and functions, and how it has evolved over time. A more systematic understanding of the GAD by all stakeholders in government and civil society as well as development partners is essential to effectively advance reforms, particularly as they relate to administrative decentralization, local governance, social service provision, but also the relationship between the state and citizens. To address this significant information gap, this research report provides an extensive overview to the GAD based on literature review and a series of in-depth interviews. The report first outlines the historic evolution of “general administration” in Myanmar, followed by a detailed mapping of the roles, structures and functions of the GAD at the Union level. The paper then methodically defines the roles, structures and functions of the GAD at the state and region, district, township and ward and village tract levels of government, and the extent to which they have been redefined in recent years as the country embarked on political and administrative reforms..."
Author/creator: Kyi Pyar Chit Saw and Matthew Arnold
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (1.5MB-reduced version; 2.37MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/GADEnglish.pdf
Date of entry/update: 05 January 2015


Title: Catalyzing Subnational Development in Myanmar - Balancing Local Preferences with National and Sector Policy (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 16 September 2014
Description/subject: ျမန္မာနွိိုင္ငံရ ွိ ျပည္နယ္ႏ င့္တွိိုင္းေဒသႀက းမ ား၏ ဖ ံ႕ၿဖွိ းတွိိုးတက္မႈကွိို အေထာက္အကူေပးျခင္း ႏွိို င္ငံေတာ္ န င့္ က ႑ ဆွိိုင္ရာ မူဝါဒ တွိို႔ႏ င့္ ေဒသႏ ရလွိို အင္မ ားအား ခ ွိန္ညွိ ျ ခင္း က ွိ း စိုကဲအင္နားဒ ....Abstract: "This paper aims to extract lessons from development partners’ engagement in Myanmar to offer suggestions for improved subnational governance and balanced regional development. The analysis in this paper is based on literature that describes and evaluates past and on - going regional development interventions in Myanmar by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). These interventions were all in fields of critical importance to Myanmar’s sustainable growth — agriculture and rural development, health, and infrastructure. The lessons summarized in this paper imply that decentralization needs to be carefully designed to strike the right balance between local preferences and national/sector policy for regional development. These lessons suggest th ree tasks that could be the key to finding the appropriate formula for balanced regional development: 1) developing a mechanism for integrating ‘top - down’ and ‘bottom - up’ priorities, 2) deepening the process of centralizing information in order to continuo usly adjust strategic plans to match the needs evolving on the ground, and 3) making the best use of existing institutions at all levels of the government."
Author/creator: Kyosuke Inada
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (1.4MB-reduced version; 2.73MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/CatalyzingSubnationalDevelopmentinMyanmarMM.pdf
Date of entry/update: 02 October 2014


Title: Ethnic Conflict and Social Services in Myanmar’s Contested Regions (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ )
Date of publication: 02 September 2014
Description/subject: With development aid commitments on the rise, Myanmar has the potential to greatly strengthen the delivery of health, education, and other social services. However, while it is established practice for aid agencies to back state-led development strategies, this presents complications in some of Myanmar's conflict affected areas where ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) and associated networks have been the primary social service providers for decades. This study explores the significance of collaboration between the state and EAOs to peacebuilding and provides broad guidance on how international aid agencies can effectively direct social service spending to help build trust and support the peace process, and avoid further exacerbating conflicts.
Author/creator: Kim Jolliffe
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (1.2MB-reduced version; 3.7MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/EthnicConflictandSocialServicesMMversion.pdf
Date of entry/update: 12 October 2014


Title: Catalyzing Subnational Development in Myanmar - Balancing Local Preferences with National and Sector Policy (English)
Date of publication: August 2014
Description/subject: Abstract: "This paper aims to extract lessons from development partners’ engagement in Myanmar to offer suggestions for improved subnational governance and balanced regional development. The analysis in this paper is based on literature that describes and evaluates past and on - going regional development interventions in Myanmar by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). These interventions were all in fields of critical importance to Myanmar’s sustainable growth — agriculture and rural development, health, and infrastructure. The lessons summarized in this paper imply that decentralization needs to be carefully designed to strike the right balance between local preferences and national/sector policy for regional development. These lessons suggest th ree tasks that could be the key to finding the appropriate formula for balanced regional development: 1) developing a mechanism for integrating ‘top - down’ and ‘bottom - up’ priorities, 2) deepening the process of centralizing information in order to continuo usly adjust strategic plans to match the needs evolving on the ground, and 3) making the best use of existing institutions at all levels of the government."
Author/creator: Kyosuke Inada
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (2.1MB-reduced version; 2.82-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/CatalyzingSubnationalDevelopmentinMyanmar.pdf
Date of entry/update: 02 October 2014


Title: Fiscal Decentralization in Myanmar: Towards a Roadmap for Reform (English)
Date of publication: 01 July 2014
Description/subject: "...Fiscal decentralization forms the backbone of Myanmar’s efforts to strengthen public services, encourage development across the country, and secure peace and stability. The country has made important first steps in the decentralization process, but as yet these do not form a consistent framework for distributing budgetary resources. This discussion paper by Hamish Nixon and Cindy Joelene intends to inform the wider discussion about how best to proceed with fiscal decentralization in Myanmar. Its goal is to inform policy makers, civil society, political parties, and international development partners of principles and processes to guide fiscal decentralization policy. The paper presents ideas for a fiscal decentralization roadmap that are grounded in the country’s context, and that build on existing structures and reforms while leaving space for the longer‐term evolution of the decentralization process..."
Author/creator: Hamish Nixon and Cindy Joelene
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (1.1MB-reduced version; 2.63-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/FiscalDecentralizationinMyanmarTowardsARoadmaptoReform...
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Title: Armed Groups and Political Legitimacy (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 23 June 2014
Description/subject: "The peace process in Myanmar remains the best opportunity in many decades to address the political, social and economic issues that have long driven armed conflict. Although negotiations between the government and ethnic armed groups have struggled to reach agreement on a number of key issues, there is still the prospect of negotiating a nationwide ceasefire accord in the next few months. Already, significant progress has been made both on the substance of negotiations and in bringing key actors to the table. However, continued military clashes in northern Myanmar have damaged confidence in the peace process, while progress in the talks has been slow due to different conceptions regarding the structure and legitimacy of the state, and of its challengers..."
Author/creator: Ashley South
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: "Myanmar Times" 23 June 2014
Format/size: pdf (79K)
Date of entry/update: 06 July 2014


Title: Armed Groups and Political Legitimacy (English)
Date of publication: 23 June 2014
Description/subject: "THE peace process in Myanmar remains the best opportunity in many decades to address the political, social and economic issues that have long driven armed conflict. Although negotiations between the government and ethnic armed groups have struggled to reach agreement on a number of key issues, there is still the prospect of negotiating a nationwide ceasefire accord in the next few months. Already, significant progress has been made both on the substance of negotiations and in bringing key actors to the table. However, continued military clashes in northern Myanmar have damaged confidence in the peace process, while progress in the talks has been slow due to different conceptions regarding the structure and legitimacy of the state, and of its challengers..."
Author/creator: Ashley South
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Myanmar Times" 23 June 2014
Format/size: pdf (59K)
Date of entry/update: 06 July 2014


Title: Ethnic Conflict and Social Services in Myanmar's Contested Regions (English)
Date of publication: 17 June 2014
Description/subject: With development aid commitments on the rise, Myanmar has the potential to greatly strengthen the delivery of health, education, and other social services. However, while it is established practice for aid agencies to back state-led development strategies, this presents complications in some of Myanmar's conflict affected areas where ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) and associated networks have been the primary social service providers for decades. This study explores the significance of collaboration between the state and EAOs to peacebuilding and provides broad guidance on how international aid agencies can effectively direct social service spending to help build trust and support the peace process, and avoid further exacerbating conflicts.
Author/creator: Kim Jolliffe
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (3.1MB-reduced version; 4.6K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/MMEthnicConflictandSocialServices.pdf
Date of entry/update: 12 October 2014


Title: Natural Resources and Subnational Governments in Myanmar: Key considerations for wealth sharing (English)
Date of publication: 16 June 2014
Description/subject: "...The research presented in this discussion paper by Thet Aung Lynn and Mari Oye provides an overview of the current role of subnational government in natural resource management and revenue collection in Myanmar. Natural resources provide a large share of government revenue, and there is potential for growth in these sectors in coming years. The government under President Thein Sein has made reform of the natural resource management system a priority, and the topic remains the subject of great interest among the wider public and civil society. In addition, natural resource management and revenue collection has long been a contentious issue in the country’s numerous ethnic conflicts and will need to be fully considered in the political dialogue. As discussion of potential future reforms takes place, an overview of the current laws, systems, and practices surrounding these areas is intended to lay the groundwork for future research and inform policy debate..."
Author/creator: Thet Aung Lynn and Mari Oye
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation
Format/size: pdf (1.2MB-reduced version; 2.66MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/NaturalResourcesandSubnationalGovernmentsinMyanmar.pdf
Date of entry/update: 03 July 2014


Title: Natural Resources and Subnational Governments in Myanmar: Key considerations for wealth sharing ျမန္မာႏုိင္ငံ၏သဘာ၀သယံဇာတအရင္းအျမစ္မ်ားႏွင့္ ေဒသဆုိင္ရ
Date of publication: 16 June 2014
Description/subject: "The Myanmar Development Resource Institute's Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI-CESD) and The Asia Foundation are pleased to present this fourth volume in the Subnational Governance in Myanmar Discussion Paper Series. Myanmar's government has announced a commitment to both greater transparency in natural resource sectors and to further fiscal decentralization. There has also been increasing discussion of sharing natural resource revenues in the contexts of economic restructuring, constitutional reform, and the peace process. However, there is not yet consensus on what is to be shared, between which entities, how, or why. This discussion paper is intended to provide an overview of the current unknown and known elements of the resource governance system in Myanmar in order to inform future analysis of the potential risks and benefits of changes to the role of subnational governments."
Author/creator: Thet Aung Lynn and Mari Oye
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (1.4MB-reduced version; 2.92MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/NaturalResouresandSubnationalGovernmentsMyanmarBurmese...
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Title: Women's Participation in the Subnational Governance of Myanmar (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 16 June 2014
Description/subject: "...Women's participation in the political life of Myanmar is gaining attention from policy makers and researchers but systematic data remains lacking. Analytical work done in other parts the world has shown that increased women’s participation in political, social and economic life of a country can lead to significant improvements in equity and effectiveness of policies to the benefits of all stakeholders. As greater authority is being transferred to subnational governments in Myanmar leading to an expansion of roles of local authorities and decisionmaking, understanding the nature of women's participation in subnational governance institutions and processes is essential. This paper outlines women's participation in the various forms of subnational governance in Myanmar, discuss why women's participation matters, and identifies the barriers and enabling factors to their participation. The findings are intended to inform discussion on this issue among the government, civil society, political parties, and development partners. The paper also highlights avenues for future research..."
Author/creator: Paul Minoletti
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (1.1MB-reduced version; 1.6MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/WomensParticipationMyanmarBurmese.pdf
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Title: Women's Participation in the Subnational Governance of Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: 16 June 2014
Description/subject: "...Women's participation in the political life of Myanmar is gaining attention from policy makers and researchers but systematic data remains lacking. Analytical work done in other parts the world has shown that increased women’s participation in political, social and economic life of a country can lead to significant improvements in equity and effectiveness of policies to the benefits of all stakeholders. As greater authority is being transferred to subnational governments in Myanmar leading to an expansion of roles of local authorities and decisionmaking, understanding the nature of women's participation in subnational governance institutions and processes is essential. This paper outlines women's participation in the various forms of subnational governance in Myanmar, discuss why women's participation matters, and identifies the barriers and enabling factors to their participation. The findings are intended to inform discussion on this issue among the government, civil society, political parties, and development partners. The paper also highlights avenues for future research..."
Author/creator: Paul Minoletti
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (745K-reduced version; 1.446MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/WomensParticipationintheSubnationalGovernanceofMyanmar...
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Title: Subnational Governments and Business in Myanmar (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 10 April 2014
Description/subject: "...Economic growth inMyanmar has been strong over the past few years, with the International Monetary Fund predicting a 7.5% growth rate for 2014. Creating a conducive business environment for increased foreign direct investment as well as a vibrant domestic private sector is a key element in generating strong and sustainable economic growth. At the local level, the important role of small- and medium-sized businesses, which constitute the vast majority of businesses in the country, to provide employment and services to communities, to generate much needed revenues for local governments to finance social services and development initiatives, and to participate effectively in the emerging production chains as part of Myanmar’s regional and global integration must be highlighted. Encouraging these local agents of growth is dependent on both furthering national reforms but also on strengthening the support of local governments at the state and region levels and below. The research presented in this discussion paper by Jared Bissinger and Linn Maung Maung analyzes the role that local government institutions play in economic governance and how this affects small- and medium-sized businesses. Intended to reach a general readership, the paper provides the relevant history, policy structures and overarching reform context. Moreover, using data collected through field work carried out in Mon State and Sagaing Region, the authors illustrate and analyze local economic governance trends and the subsequent business environment for small- and medium-sized businesses. The paper concludes with key policy considerations by the authors..."
Author/creator: Jared Bissinger and Linn Maung Maung
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (814K-reduced version; 3.88MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/SubnationalGovernmentsandBusinessinMyanmarBurmese.pdf
Date of entry/update: 05 July 2014


Title: Subnational Governments and Business in Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: February 2014
Description/subject: "...Economic growth inMyanmar has been strong over the past few years, with the International Monetary Fund predicting a 7.5% growth rate for 2014. Creating a conducive business environment for increased foreign direct investment as well as a vibrant domestic private sector is a key element in generating strong and sustainable economic growth. At the local level, the important role of small- and medium-sized businesses, which constitute the vast majority of businesses in the country, to provide employment and services to communities, to generate much needed revenues for local governments to finance social services and development initiatives, and to participate effectively in the emerging production chains as part of Myanmar’s regional and global integration must be highlighted. Encouraging these local agents of growth is dependent on both furthering national reforms but also on strengthening the support of local governments at the state and region levels and below. The research presented in this discussion paper by Jared Bissinger and Linn Maung Maung analyzes the role that local government institutions play in economic governance and how this affects small- and medium-sized businesses. Intended to reach a general readership, the paper provides the relevant history, policy structures and overarching reform context. Moreover, using data collected through field work carried out in Mon State and Sagaing Region, the authors illustrate and analyze local economic governance trends and the subsequent business environment for small- and medium-sized businesses. The paper concludes with key policy considerations by the authors..."
Author/creator: Jared Bissinger and Linn Maung Maung
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (602K-reduced version; 3.4MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/SubnationalGovernmentsandBusinessinMyanmarEnglish.pdf
Date of entry/update: 05 July 2014


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN CHIN
Date of publication: 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The State of Local Governance: Trends in Chin - UNDP Myanmar 2014 This report presents the findings from the Local Governance Mapping conducted in Chin State between December 2013 and January 2014. Sharing a long northern border with India and its western front with Bangladesh, Chin State is the poorest among Myanmar’s state/regions, and among its most diverse. Chin State has a unique demographic composition, with six main ethnic groups (Asho, Cho, Khum, Laimi, Mizo and Zomi) and dozens of sub-groups represented in this majority-Chin, predominantly Christian area of the country. With an estimated population of 465,000 people, Chin State is the second smallest (by population size) of all states/regions. Widespread poverty, low population density, challenging mountainous terrain and an underdeveloped infrastructure are all severe barriers for development. The ceasefire agreement of 2012 between the Government of Myanmar (GoM) and the Chin National Front (CNF), a non-state armed group, has removed what was previously a serious bottleneck for development. Recognising the immense challenges faced by Chin State, the union government has allocated additional investment funds to the tune of Ks 2 billion in addition to around Ks 1 billion already allocated to each of the states/regions for regional development and poverty reduction in 2013-14.1 For the Local Governance Mapping in Chin State, three townships in the north (Thantlang, Falam and Tonzang) and three townships in the south (Mindat, Matupi and Paletwa) were selected. 576 respondents from 12 villages across these six townships were asked about their perceptions and experiences related to local governance using a Citizens’ Report Card (CRC).2 Half (49%) of citizens interviewed were between 18-40 years of age. Reflecting the geographic dynamics of Chin State, the majority of respondents (67%) lived in rural areas. The vast majority (91%) of those interviewed were of Chin ethnicity, while 8% of respondents originated from Rakhine. Alongside the opinions of the people, multi-stakeholder dialogues at the community (Community Dialogues (CD)) and township (Government Self Assessments (GSA)) levels, and primary research on the functioning of local governance in three townships (Thantlang, Tonzang and Mindat), informed the findings from the Local Governance Mapping exercise, which are structured along the five core principles of good local governance. These form the basis of the mapping framework and methodology adopted in Myanmar, viz. effectiveness and efficiency; transparency and rule of law; accountability; participation; and, equity. In addition, the mapping exercise has also yielded some significant “process” results, which are also highlighted below."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (1.9MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 02 February 2016


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN KACHIN
Date of publication: 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping (LGM) conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership with the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) in Kachin State from November 2014 to January 2015. Drawing on the perceptions of the people and local governance actors, the mapping has captured the current dynamics of governance at the front line and enables an analysis of the participation, responsiveness and accountability for local governance and basic service provision. The report examines processes, mechanisms and the way in which they are functioning for development planning and participation, people’s access to basic services and the information, transparency and accountability dimensions of local governance processes in the four selected townships of Tanai, Putao, Momauk and Myitkyina. While the focus of the LGM is on local governance institutions, the roles of the State and Union government authorities and their relationships with the lower levels in a broader governance context are also relevant and, to some extent, reflected upon in this analysis. Kachin State occupies the northernmost area of Myanmar bordering India to the west and China to the north and east. Kachin has the third largest land area of the 14 States and Regions in Myanmar and has the country’s highest mountain ranges. The people living in Kachin State belong to various ethnic groups, primarily Kachins, Bamars and Shans. The four townships of Momauk, Myitkyina, Putao, and Tanai covered under the mapping offer a variety of examples of issues of access and sophistication of the local economy as well as the effects of the conflict in the state. Since 2011, Kachin State has seen the most serious of all the armed confrontations affecting the country, and pending a lasting settlement of the decadesold conflict, local governance systems and mechanisms will be affected by this state of affairs. The information collected as part of the mapping and presented in the subsequent sections must therefore be read and understood as part of the broader geographic, socio-economic, demographic, historical and political context in which the State finds itself. The legacies of armed conflict, ethnic mobilization and military rule inform and shape the efforts, undertaken since 2012, of reintroducing some forms of popular participation at the local level in Kachin State, in particular the townships and the village tracts and wards. The degree to which Kachin State will be successful in both reflecting its own ethnic diversity while at the same time delivering basic services in an equitable and effective manner will depend largely on the progress made in building local governance institutions and processes that are inclusive and responsive to the needs of the local population. Given the pending peace agreement, perceptions of safety are thus more of an indication of relative change rather than any absolute measure. At the time of the community-level mapping in November 2014 most people felt the security situation had not worsened. The perceptions of this vary between townships and since conflict has been more evident in Momauk, nearly half the respondents felt the situation in the township had worsened although most people (76%) feel secure in their immediate area. Finding a balanced solution to the underlying causes of this conflict remains an urgent challenge for the people of Kachin State..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (5.9MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 04 February 2016


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN KAYIN
Date of publication: 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping research conducted by UNDP in Kayin State. Based on the perceptions of the people and local governance actors, the mapping has tried to capture some key aspects of the current dynamics of governance at the frontline of state-citizen interaction and focuses in its analysis on participation in public sector planning, access to basic services and accountability in local governance. In consultation with the Kayin State government, it was agreed that the Local Governance Mapping would be conducted in three townships, namely, Hlaingbwe, Kawkareik and Hpa-An between February and June 2014. Three of the more remote and less populated townships (Myawaddy, Hpapun and Thandaung) have for a long time been partially under control of the KNU and have been more unstable than the other four townships in Kayin State during the 65 years of armed conflict. As a result of their remote character, their low population density and the years of conflict, the availability of basic services and their governance situation is most likely to be significantly different from the ones included in this study."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (2.2MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 05 February 2016


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN MANDALAY
Date of publication: 2014
Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: "This report outlines the results of the Local Governance Mapping conducted by UNDP in Mandalay Region. Based on the perceptions of the people and local governance actors, the mapping has captured some key aspects of the current dynamics of governance at the frontline of state-citizen interaction like participation in local development planning, access to basic social services and transparency and accountability in local governance. In consultation with the Mandalay Region government, it was agreed that the Local Governance Mapping would be conducted in three townships, namely, Meiktila, Thazi and Thabeikkyin between August and November 2014."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (3.3MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 04 February 2016


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN SHAN
Date of publication: 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The State of Local Governance: Trends in Shan - UNDP Myanmar 2015 This report aims to map the state of affairs and the evolution as witnessed over the past years with regards to governance reforms and service delivery, in particular for the sectors education, health and water supply, in Shan State. It provides a historical background to contextualise the present governance situation in Shan, which differs from all other Regions and States; it provides information on the various recent elections in the State; it seeks transparency of the State budget, and, against this background, it pays particular attention to the perceptions of citizens’ regarding the changes they have witnessed. It finally tries to make the link between good local governance and the quality of service delivery, whereby it looks at aspects of decision-making powers in relation to budget discretion, the availability of budget envelopes, oversight and accountability. Shan State takes a special place amongst the fourteen Regions and States in the country as, in terms of area the biggest of all, covering almost 25% of the entire nation, and in terms of population by far the biggest of all States. Arguably, Shan State has the largest ethnic diversity amongst its population of all fourteen Regions and States. Related to this diversity - its location and the physical features of the terrain making it perfect for a natural border zone - Shan State has played an important role in the history of Myanmar. As far as the most recent history is concerned, this starts with the special position that was negotiated in the Panglong agreement, where Shan State was given the right to exit the Union after a period of 10 years if it would prefer to do so (and which it did not do). As much as the recent serious flaring up of fighting (early February 2015) in the Laukkaing area illustrates that peace and stability cannot yet be taken for granted, the earlier open conflicts in Shan State, which were as much based on economic interest as ethnic differences, seemed to have already for some time reached a situation of agreed status quo, amongst others reflected by the number of Self-Administered Areas as enshrined in the Constitution of 2008, and which are described as part of the local governance set-up in this report. Shan State is distinctly different (and also more complicated), as compared to most other Regions and States, but the mapping of local governance and service delivery also found a number of similarities with the findings in other areas. Overall, in Shan State, as in all other Regions and States, people clearly acknowledge the improvements in service delivery, notably for road infrastructure, education, health and, although to a lesser extent, water supply. People mentioned access to safe drinking water as the largest challenge in service delivery and people also asked for enhanced investments in this sector. As in other Regions and States,* people in Shan ask for more information from government, whilst they bestow (also in terms of information flow) a pivotal role on the indirectly elected Ward and Village Tract Administrators (W/VTAs), whom they consider more and more as a local development change agent. To support this process and to be able honouring the expectations of W/VTAs as ‘intermediary’ between the people and the township administrations, some dedicated capacity development activities may be indicated, both addressing the W/VTAs as well as the township administrations."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (1.9MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 02 February 2016


Title: State and Region Governments in Myanmar (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Date of publication: 16 December 2013
Description/subject: "...Subnational governance institutions and central-local relations are critical to the future of Myanmar, and they are undergoing significant change. This report aims to inform policy-makers, political actors, donors, and other stakeholders about the new state and region structures created under the 2008 Constitution, and their relationship with broader governance, peace and decentralization processes."
Author/creator: Hamish Nixon, Cindy Joelene, Kyi Pyar Chit Saw, Thet Aung Lynn, Matthew Arnold
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (1.6MB-reduced version; 5.1MB-original)
Date of entry/update: 05 July 2014


Title: A Preliminary Assessment of Decentralization in Education: Experiences in Mon State and Yangon Region (English)
Date of publication: December 2013
Description/subject: "This discussion paper examines decentralization within the formal education system in Myanmar in Yangon Region and Mon State. The aspects of decentralization considered include arrangements between the central government and the states for the management of education, including budgets, human resources, curriculum, policy frameworks, and overall decision-making authority..."
Author/creator: Brooke Zobrist and Patrick McCormick
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD ( No. 1)Discussion Papaer
Format/size: pdf (620K-reduced version; 3.4MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/APreliminaryAssessmentofDecentralizationinEducation.pdf
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Title: A Preliminary Assessment of Decentralization in Education: Experiences in Mon State and Yangon Region Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ(
Date of publication: December 2013
Description/subject: "This discussion paper examines decentralization within the formal education system in Myanmar in Yangon Region and Mon State. The aspects of decentralization considered include arrangements between the central government and the states for the management of education, including budgets, human resources, curriculum, policy frameworks, and overall decision-making authority..."
Author/creator: Brooke Zobrist and Patrick McCormick
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Asia Foundation, MDRI-CESD
Format/size: pdf (614K-reduced version; 3.5MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/APreliminaryAssessmentofDecentralizationinEducationBur...
Date of entry/update: 04 July 2014


Title: State and Region Governments in Myanmar (English)
Date of publication: 09 September 2013
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Subnational governance institutions and central-local relations are critical to the future of Myanmar, and they are undergoing significant change. This report aims to inform policy-makers, political actors, donors, and other stakeholders about the new state and region structures created under the 2008 Constitution, and their relationship with broader governance, peace and decentralization processes.1 These new subnational governments have started to open political space, but they face significant limitations. While the presence of partially-elected bodies at this level is a major reform, they face capacity constraints. The executive at state and region level is still dominated by a top-down appointment process, and ministers have little control over the administrative apparatus, limiting the effectiveness of the new governments. State and region budgets are as yet small, and prepared in a way that reinforces central influence. Further reforms are needed to align the new political structures with administrative and fiscal arrangements, broaden the scope of decentralization to more significant areas, and link it with wider democratization, peace and public administration reform processes...The study aims to answer three broad questions: * What is the constitutional, legal and institutional framework for state and region government, and what is the policy direction of decentralization reform? * What are the outcomes of these reforms in the states and regions, and how do they vary? * What challenges, opportunities and ways forward are there to improve subnational statebuilding, service delivery and conflict management?".....Table of Contents: ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS... A NOTE ON NAMES... GLOSSARY... EXECUTIVE SUMMARY... ONE: INTRODUCTION: BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES; CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK; RESEARCH METHODS... TWO: THE STATE AND REGION GOVERNANCE FRAMEWORK: MYANMAR’S SUBNATIONAL ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURE; STRUCTURE OF STATE AND REGION GOVERNMENTS UNDER THE 2008 CONSTITUTION; INTERPRETING STATE AND REGION GOVERNMENT STRUCTURES; THE SUBNATIONAL GOVERNANCE REFORM ENVIRONMENT ... THREE: THE ADMINISTRATIVE DIMENSION: STATE/REGION DEPARTMENTS ; UNION MINISTRY OFFICES AT STATE AND REGION LEVEL ; MYANMAR’S ADMINISTRATIVE BACKBONE: THE GENERAL ADMINISTRATION DEPARTMENT... FOUR: THE FISCAL DIMENSION: STATE AND REGION BUDGETING; POVERTY REDUCTION FUND; STATE AND REGION REVENUES; ASSESSING FISCAL DECENTRALIZATION... FIVE: THE POLITICAL DIMENSION: CHIEFMINISTERS; STATE AND REGION CABINET MINISTERS; STATE AND REGION HLUTTAWS; PUBLIC OUTREACH BY STATE/REGION GOVERNMENTS AND HLUTTAWS; POLITICAL PARTIES AT REGION AND STATE LEVEL... SIX: CONCLUSIONS AND THE ROAD AHEAD: ASSESSING DECENTRALIZATION TOMYANMAR’S STATES AND REGIONS TO DATE; DECENTRALIZATION AND THE PEACE PROCESS; DECENTRALIZATION AND DEMOCRACY; TOWARDS A STATE AND REGION GOVERNANCE REFORM ROADMAP?; NAVIGATING THE POLITICS OF REFORM... ANNEX I: REGION OR STATE LEGISLATIVE LIST (SCHEDULE TWO)... ANNEX II: STATE AND REGION LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY... ANNEX III: TAXES COLLECTED BY REGION OR STATES (SCHEDULE FIVE).
Author/creator: Hamish Nixon, Cindy Joelene, Kyi Pyar Chit Saw, Thet Aung Lynn, Matthew Arnold
Language: English
Source/publisher: The Asia Foundation, Centre for Economic and Social Development of the Myanmar Development Resource Institute (MDRI-CESD)
Format/size: pdf (1.9MB-reduced version; 4.3MB-original)
Alternate URLs: http://asiafoundation.org/resources/pdfs/StateandRegionGovernmentsinMyanmarCESDTAF.PDF
Date of entry/update: 16 September 2013


Title: The 2008 Constitution and Ethnic Issues: To What Extent Did It Satisfy the Aspirations of Various Ethnic Groups? (Burmese)
Date of publication: October 2012
Description/subject: Abstract: "Since the beginning, in 1961 at the Taungyi Conference, the “Federal Movement”, which would eventually result in a military coup in 1962, the ethnic nationalities in Burma have all been consistently demanding the rebuilding of the Union of Burma based on the spirit of Panglong and the principles of democracy, political equality and internal self-determination. They have further argued that the constitution of the Union should be formed in accordance with the principles of federalism and democratic decentralization, which would guarantee the democratic rights of citizens of Burma including the principles contained in the United Nation's declaration of universal human rights. On the formation of a genuine Federal Union, ethnic nationalities demand that all member states of the Union have their separate constitutions, their own organs of state, that is, State Legislative Assembly, State Government and State Supreme Court. In their proposal, the ethnic nationalities demanded that the Union Assembly should be a bicameral legislature consisting of a Chamber of Nationalities (Upper House) and a Chamber of Deputies (Lower House), and each member state of the Union should send an equal number of representatives to the Upper House regardless of its population or size. They also demand that the Union of Burma be composed of National States; and all National States of the Union be constituted in terms of ethnicity or historic ethnic homelands, rather than geographical areas. Moreover, the residual powers, that is, all powers, except those given by member states to the federal center, or the Union, must be vested in the Legislative Assembly of the National State. In this way, the Union Constitution automatically allocates political authority of legislative, judicial, and administrative powers to the Ethnic National States. Thus, all member states of the Union would be able to exercise the right of self-determination freely through the right of self-government within their respective National States. When the military regime, which traditionally was the strongest opponent of the ethnic nationalities’ demands, adopted a new constitution in 2008 it contained certain Author I Lian H. Sakhong elements of federalism. These included a bicameral legislature consisting of a Amyotha Hlutdaw and a Pyituh Hlutdaw, equal representation from each state at a Chamber of Nationalities, and all member states of the Union having their own separate State Assemblies and State governments. This paper will address to what extent the 2008 Constitution satisfies the aspirations of various the Ethnic Nationalities in Burma. I shall, however, limit myself in this paper within the constitutional framework of the “form of state” - that is, how the Union is structured and how much power and status is given to member states of the Union."
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Burma Centre for Ethnic Studies (Analysis Paper No. 5)
Format/size: pdf (197K)
Date of entry/update: 23 October 2012


Title: The 2008 Constitution and Ethnic Issues: To What Extent Did It Satisfy the Aspirations of Various Ethnic Groups? (English)
Date of publication: October 2012
Description/subject: Abstract: "Since the beginning, in 1961 at the Taungyi Conference, the “Federal Movement”, which would eventually result in a military coup in 1962, the ethnic nationalities in Burma have all been consistently demanding the rebuilding of the Union of Burma based on the spirit of Panglong and the principles of democracy, political equality and internal self-determination. They have further argued that the constitution of the Union should be formed in accordance with the principles of federalism and democratic decentralization, which would guarantee the democratic rights of citizens of Burma including the principles contained in the United Nation's declaration of universal human rights. On the formation of a genuine Federal Union, ethnic nationalities demand that all member states of the Union have their separate constitutions, their own organs of state, that is, State Legislative Assembly, State Government and State Supreme Court. In their proposal, the ethnic nationalities demanded that the Union Assembly should be a bicameral legislature consisting of a Chamber of Nationalities (Upper House) and a Chamber of Deputies (Lower House), and each member state of the Union should send an equal number of representatives to the Upper House regardless of its population or size. They also demand that the Union of Burma be composed of National States; and all National States of the Union be constituted in terms of ethnicity or historic ethnic homelands, rather than geographical areas. Moreover, the residual powers, that is, all powers, except those given by member states to the federal center, or the Union, must be vested in the Legislative Assembly of the National State. In this way, the Union Constitution automatically allocates political authority of legislative, judicial, and administrative powers to the Ethnic National States. Thus, all member states of the Union would be able to exercise the right of self-determination freely through the right of self-government within their respective National States. When the military regime, which traditionally was the strongest opponent of the ethnic nationalities’ demands, adopted a new constitution in 2008 it contained certain Author I Lian H. Sakhong elements of federalism. These included a bicameral legislature consisting of a Amyotha Hlutdaw and a Pyituh Hlutdaw, equal representation from each state at a Chamber of Nationalities, and all member states of the Union having their own separate State Assemblies and State governments. This paper will address to what extent the 2008 Constitution satisfies the aspirations of various the Ethnic Nationalities in Burma. I shall, however, limit myself in this paper within the constitutional framework of the “form of state” - that is, how the Union is structured and how much power and status is given to member states of the Union."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Burma Centre for Ethnic Studies (Analysis Paper No. 5)
Format/size: pdf (196K)
Date of entry/update: 22 October 2012


Title: Region/State Hluttaw Election Law No. 5/2010: Bylaws - တုိင္းေဒသႀကီး (သုိ႔) ျပည္နယ္လႊတ္ေတာ္ေရြးေကာက္ပြဲနည္းဥပေဒမ်ား
Date of publication: 17 March 2010
Description/subject: No English translation available yet
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: SPDC via Network Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (209K)
Date of entry/update: 23 March 2010


Title: Region/State Hluttaw Election Law No. 5/2010 (English)
Date of publication: 08 March 2010
Description/subject: Official English translation
Language: English
Source/publisher: SPDC via Network Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (71K)
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2010


Title: Region/State Hluttaw Election Law No. 5/2010 - တုိင္းေဒသႀကီး(သုိ႔) ျပည္နယ္လႊတ္ေတာ္ ေရြးေကာက္ပြဲဥပေဒ
Date of publication: 08 March 2010
Language: Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: SPDC via Network Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (84K)
Date of entry/update: 13 March 2010


Title: Politics of Reconciliation in Burma
Date of publication: March 2005
Description/subject: "...This paper is a response to the seeming 'intractability' of civil conflict in Burma, as well as a reflection on the problem of anticipating, achieving and sustaining a reconciliation process in Burma that lives beyond the life of the first democratic elections in the post-regime period. The author hopes to stimulate thoughtful discussion and debate about matters of reconciliation in Burma. The paper strongly emphasizes the relevance of Buddhism to the politics of reconciliation, which has not yet fully explored by both the leaders and the stakeholders in Burma. The paper also stresses three other key building blocks for a reconciliation process in Burma. Firstly, because Burma is ultimately a village- based society, a reconciliation processes will necessarily need to occur at the village level. Any State based initiatives must also be accompanied by broad and effective grassroots efforts. Secondly, compensation and/or merit-making has played a crucial role in conflict resolution and justice at various village levels and as such could provide valuable tools in building an appropriate model of conflict resolution at the community levels. Thirdly, the importance of administrative and political decentralization in a democratic mould cannot be over-emphasized more in the case of Burma. By adopting a system of autonomous local governments whereby local communities (ethnically or otherwise defined) are given real power with regard to their present lives and future affairs and aspirations may be the key to a more peaceful, united, diverse Burma, beneficial to all its citizens..."
Author/creator: Toe Zaw Latt
Language: English, Burmese
Source/publisher: The Burma Fund (Technical Advisory Network of Burma, WP 07
Format/size: pdf (669K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.ncgub.net/staticpages/index.php/Burma-Fund-Docs
Date of entry/update: 10 June 2007


Title: An Overview of Burma's Ethnic Politics
Date of publication: 31 October 2000
Description/subject: "... The fact that many pro-democracy leaders in Burma now recognize the importance of ethnic issues and have developed working relationships with ethnic leaders offers hope that ethnic political demands will ultimately be resolved at the negotiating table. However, such a resolution is unlikely to be implemented by the military regime, which rejects decentralization and power-sharing. The ongoing civil war, population relocations, and religious persecution, compounded by appeals to narrow nationalism on all sides, have caused much damage. Without visionary leadership, a commitment to dialogue, and the emergence of a culture of tolerance, lasting peace will continue to elude Burma..."
Author/creator: Christina Fink
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Cultural Survival Quarterly" Issue 24.3
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 14 December 2010


Title: Ta’ang (Palaung) Leader’s Message to the International Community: ‘Come and See the Real Picture in Our Areas’
Description/subject: "The Ta’ang, also known as Palaung, are one of Burma’s myriad ethnic groups who have been fighting for basic human rights and autonomy for decades. Despite the international enthusiasm over Burma’s reform process, the reality in Burma’s ethnic borderlands remains dire, and the Burmese military continues its brutal offensive against ethnic civilians. Tar Aik Bong joined the Ta’ang struggle in 1987, and is now the Chairperson of the Palaung State Liberation Front (PSLF), the Head of military commission of the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), as well as a member of the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) council and Foreign Affairs Department. The PSLF/TNLA is one of the few prominent ethnic armed groups yet to sign a ceasefire with the Burmese government. The following is Tar Aik Bong’s message to the international community."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Burma Link
Format/size: pdf
Date of entry/update: 18 March 2016


Title: THE STATE OF LOCAL GOVERNANCE: TRENDS IN MON
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The State of Local Governance: Trends in Mon - UNDP Myanmar 2014 This report presents the findings from the Local Governance Mapping conducted in Mon State between December 2013 and January 2014. With an estimated population of 1.9 million,1 Mon State is one of Myanmar’s most well- connected and prosperous states/regions. Economic activity is driven by agriculture, forestry, fishing and mining - the state is a major producer of rice and rubber crop. The security situation has stabilised following the ratification of a ceasefire agreement between the Union government and the Mon National Liberation Army - a non-state armed group - in 2012, and the state is now experiencing a new period of stability and engagement between government and non-state actors. Still, pockets of volatility remain, and a long-term political solution towards peace and reconciliation has yet to be achieved. For the Local Governance Mapping in Mon State, Bilin, Chaungzon, Kyaikmaraw, Paung, Thanbyuzayat and Ye townships were selected. 576 respondents from 12 villages across these six townships shared their perceptions and experiences related to local governance.2 Nearly half of them were between 41-60 years of age - researchers highlighted difficulty in sourcing younger respondents across all six representative townships, reportedly due to migration of working-age labour to nearby Thailand and Malaysia. 52% of the randomly selected respondents were ethnic Bamar, 30% Mon and 10% Kayin. Alongside the opinions of the people, multi-stakeholder dialogues at the community and township level and primary research on the functioning of local governance in three townships (Bilin, Chaungzon, and Ye) informed the findings from the Local Governance Mapping exercise, which are structured along the five core principles of good local governance. These form the basis of the mapping framework and methodology adopted in Myanmar, viz. effectiveness and efficiency; transparency and rule of law; accountability; participation; and, equity. In addition, the mapping exercise has also yielded some significant “process” results, which are also highlighted below."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNDP Myanmar
Format/size: pdf (1.5MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.mm.undp.org/content/dam/myanmar/docs/Publications/PovRedu/Local%20Governance%20Mapping/U...
Date of entry/update: 02 February 2016