Between 2011 and 2013, André Corrêa d’Almeida supported Columbia University Global Center Amman in the development of the Institute for Sustainable Development (ISDP). One of the goals was to train development practitioners on integrated approached for sustainable development. 500 participants from 50 different organizations participated in this capacity building program designed and led by André Corrêa d’Almeida.
Currently our work with Jordan focuses on creating a Columbia University-wide graduate level and executive training learning opportunities in the field of refugee response – policy and practice – with a focus on the Middle East and neighboring regions. This partnership with Columbia School of Social Work aims at methodically deliver practical and multidisciplinary trainings for high priority skills in the field of refugee response and contextualize practice within the broader political and institutional setting in which response occurs or needs to occur.
Fiscal Decentralization in Jordan
This research project aims at reframing the debate and discussing the parameters of an intergovernmental transfer formula for Governorates (working paper available under ARCx’s “Publications” page).
Decentralization has been on the Government of Jordan’s agenda for more than twenty years. However, a close examination of the political discourse reveals three features that warrant further analysis. First, there is no clear distinction between the political, fiscal and administrative aspects of decentralization and the sequence by which they should occur. Second, more emphasis has been paid to aspects of administrative decentralization, rather than to the transfer of political power and financial resources from the central government to governorates needed to increase transparency and accountability, as well as the autonomy and capacity of subnational governments. Third, the little that has been written about the autonomy of governorates does not adequately consider the need for an intergovernmental transfer system to allocate national revenues to subnational governments. Drawing from fiscal decentralization experiences in other countries, and from the specific historical and institutional context of Jordan, this article constitutes the first attempt to model capital transfers and to discuss the parameters of an intergovernmental transfer formula. The results show that a more comprehensive and appropriately structured mix of transfer decision criteria can help mitigate the ambiguity of Jordan’s transfer policy. This includes changing the weights of some current transfer criteria and factoring in new ones.