Supporting Devolved Institutions in Kenya

Under USAID's Agile and Harmonised Assistance for Devolved Institutions (AHADI) project, Urban has partnered with the State University of New York (SUNY) to assist Kenyan authorities and the public in understanding and carrying out their new roles in this complex environment. 

We are working with local partners including CSOs, universities, government officials and citizens to articulate their priorities, form critical policy advocacy linkages, and establish oversight mechanisms among CSOs, the Parliament and county assembles. These linkages and mechanisms will both "check the state upwards" and enhance working democracy at the county level.


USAID, State University of New York (SUNY)

Period of Performance

January 2014 - December 2018


The Constitution that Kenyans adopted in September 2010 represents an important step in the process of national reconciliation and an important attempt to make Kenya's public sector more efficient and more accountable through devolution. The new Constitution assigns a prominent role in the public sector to county-level governments, as it transfers detailed functional responsibilities to the county level and provides that at least 15 percent of national revenues are to be shared with county governments. This IDG Policy Brief discusses whether the implementation of the Constitution will bring about a sea-change in intergovernmental fiscal relations and public empowerment in Kenya, or whether the changes in Kenya's intergovernmental structure in practice will represent a smaller and more incremental step towards a more decentralized governance structure.

Fiscal Decentralization in Kenya: A Small Step or Giant Leap?