Democratization in Egypt: The Potential Role of Decentralization

Brief

Democratization in Egypt: The Potential Role of Decentralization

February 16, 2011

Abstract

Although the timing and fervor of the unrest in Egypt over the past several weeks has come as a surprise to many, the underlying causes of the unrest do not come as a surprise. While the removal of President Hosni Mubarak signifies the achievement of the demonstrators' main demand, merely substituting the president or cabinet will not make Egypt more democratic, nor will a change in the national leadership empower the people over the public sector. Instead, deep structural reforms are needed within Egypt's public sector in order to ensure that the public sector is capable of being responsive to the needs of the people. This Policy Brief highlights the role that decentralization reform could play in that process.

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