How to Account for Context?
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How to Account for Context? Using a Causal Chain Approach in Social Accountability Anuradha Joshi Institute of Development Studies GPSA Webinar 18 June 2014. 1. Structure What is Social Accountability? Does it work? The Evidence Outcome Expectations The issue of Context

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How to Account for Context? Using a Causal Chain Approach in Social Accountability Anuradha Joshi

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How to account for context using a causal chain approach in social accountability anuradha joshi

How to Account for Context?

Using a Causal Chain Approach in Social Accountability

Anuradha Joshi

Institute of Development Studies

GPSA Webinar

18 June 2014


How to account for context using a causal chain approach in social accountability anuradha joshi

1. Structure

  • What is Social Accountability?

  • Does it work? The Evidence

  • Outcome Expectations

  • The issue of Context

  • Components of Social Accountability

  • Causal Chains


How to account for context using a causal chain approach in social accountability anuradha joshi

2. What is the Issue? The Evidence

  • We have mixed and incomplete evidence of impact —incomparable interventions, different impacts measured, contradictory outcomes

  • Difficult to make generalizations

  • Types of evidence vary—RCTs to qualitative studies

  • Yet, assessments of existing evidence find common themes


How to account for context using a causal chain approach in social accountability anuradha joshi

3. What does the evidence seem to say?

  • Information alone is not enough

  • Collective citizen action is essential

  • Facilitated interaction is critical

  • State capacity to respond matters

  • Combination of carrots and sticks

  • Multiple accountability pressures work

  • Questions about time frames of outcomes

  • Outcomes depend upon context


How to account for context using a causal chain approach in social accountability anuradha joshi

4. Expanding the Range of Outcomes

State-society relationships

Social actors

State

Institutional channels for interaction

Reduced corruption

Improved provision of public goods

Instrumental

Responsive public officials

Better policy design

Trust

Construction of Citizenship

Empowered citizens

Legitimacy

State-building

Democratic Deepening

Institutional

Good governance

Inclusive Social Norms


5 assumed links information citizen action and state response point knowledge gaps

5. Assumed Links:Information, Citizen Action and State ResponsePoint: Knowledge gaps

State Response

Information

Citizen Action

Outcomes

Service Delivery

Governance

Empowerment


6 dynamic links information citizen action and state response point knowledge gaps

6. Dynamic Links :Information, Citizen Action, and State ResponsePoint: Knowledge gaps

  • Information catalyzes citizen action

  • Citizen action to generate information

  • Information can lead directly to change

  • State response can take the form of information disclosure

Information

ACCOUNTABILITY

State Response

Citizen Action

  • Citizens action triggers state response

  • State responses shape citizen action


Our approach

7. Social Accountability Component Characteristics

Our Approach

Information

Citizen Action

State Response


How to account for context using a causal chain approach in social accountability anuradha joshi

8. An Illustrative Causal Chain: State Responsiveness

Do I think citizens have legitimate grievances?

Do I hold responsibility for the particular public good?

Am I likely to be officially sanctioned due to citizen action?

 Do I care about my reputation?

(If not, possibility of reprisal)

 Do I care about the service?

 Do I think I can do something about the situation?

(if not, then could lead to helplessness)

Do I have the capacity and resources to take action?

(If not, then could lead to frustration)

Do I need others to contribute in terms of resources/reforms?

 Can I motivate others? Are others likely to collaborate?

Do I have access to higher levels?

(Depends upon whether resources, reformists are identifiable within the system)

Reforms/increased resources

IMPROVED SERVICES


9 conclusions

9. Conclusions

  • SA as part of a long term ongoing political engagement by social actors with the state

  • SA can have a range of outcomes of interest

  • Causal chains help highlight the different potential pathways towards reaching desired outcomes

  • Causal chains can help develop a theory of change for interventions, provide a framework for understanding context and documenting it, enable tweaking as initiatives unfold and offer a means of assessing impact


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