Bureaucratic Reform for Community Driven Development: Lessons from the Implementation of the National Program for Community Empowerment (PNPM)-Urban in Surabaya, Indonesia*

By Sulikah Asmorowati.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper aims to understand the nature of the relationship between bureaucratic reform and community driven development in general, and bureaucracy and community in particular. Within the discourse of public administration and development, the idea that the state and its administrative arms, the bureaucracy, should have a role in promoting development is not new. However, with the inefficiencies and frustrations of ‘red-tape’ being inherent of state and bureaucratic systems, attaining a certain level of functionality and accountability has proven difficult and the call for bureaucratic reform is now a pervasive feature of broader development strategies. By drawing on an Indonesian case study of the implementation of the National Program for Community Empowerment (PNPM)-Urban in Surabaya, this paper focuses on the lessons that emerged from the project, about the potential fusion between development and bureaucratic reform and the extent to which community participation is facilitated through such projects. The findings confirm the complexities and uneasy fit of the relationship between bureaucratic reform and community driven development in general and bureaucracy and community in particular. In the concluding remarks, a direction for further research is suggested.

Keywords: Bureaucratic Reform, Community Driven Development, Poverty, Decentralisation, Surabaya, Indonesia, PNPM

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 5, Issue 12, pp.115-138. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 960.451KB).

Sulikah Asmorowati

PhD Candidate, School of Philosophy, Anthropology & Social Inquiry, Faculty of Arts, On-leave Lecturer of Airlangga University, Surabaya, Indonesia, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

I am a lecturer in Public Administration Department at the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences of Airlangga University, Surabaya, Indonesia (in which I obtained my bachelor degree). With a master degree in Development Studies at the University of Melbourne, Australia, I am currently a PhD candidate in the same Program at the University of Melbourne. I have done research on child protection, gender and development, micro-finance, poverty and public policy and project evaluation in urban environment in developing countries. I have published a book (co-authored with Professor Jusuf Irianto and Dr. Sjahrazad Masdar) in Bahasa Indonesia, which focused specifically on bureaucracy and public service in Indonesia. I also have published several journal articles in both Bahasa Indonesia and English. The most prominent is an article on ‘Urban Poverty and the Rural Development Bias in Journal of Developing Societies (co-authored with Anthony Marcus) in 2006.


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