Decentralization and intergovernmental finance have been a common element in international development efforts for many years. However, the success of fiscal decentralization as a development strategy is decidedly unclear, and there is growing skepticism about the
effectiveness of (fiscal) decentralization as an international development strategy. This short
essay explores the current state of knowledge with respect to fiscal decentralization and assesses the relevance of fiscal decentralization to the wider international development agenda, using the fiscal aspects of decentralization as an entry-point into the broader discussion of decentralization.