Book Talk -- Governance for Urban Services: Access, Participation, Accountability and Transparency


Wednesday, April 29, 2020, 9:00am to 10:00am


Virtual livestream event
The Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation invites you to a virtual book talk with Shabbir Cheema, Senior Fellow, Ash Center – and the principal author and editor of “Governance for Urban Services: Access, Participation, Accountability and Transparency” (Springer 2020). Jorrit de Jong, the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative Faculty Director and Kennedy School Senior Lecturer in Public Policy and Management, will moderate.
Cheema will be joined by co-authors:
  • Adriana Alberti, United Nations
  • Harry Blair, Yale University  
  • Bharat Dahiya, Professor,Thamasat University, Thailand  
  • Nasser Javed, The Urban Unit, Pakistan
  • Debolina Kundu, Professor, National Institute of Urban Affairs, India
  • Camilla Rocca, Mo Ibrahim Foundation focused on Governance in Africa 
  • Bo Qin, Professor, Renmin University, China
This book examines three vital issues in urbanization and democratization: the institutional structures and processes of urban local governance to improve access to urban services; their outcomes in relation to low-income groups’ access to services, citizen participation, accountability of local leaders and officials, and transparency in local governance; and the factors that influence access to urban services, especially for the poor and marginalized groups. Further, it presents innovations in urban local governance and describes results of survey data in 18 slums in 9 Asian cities and a regional survey in Africa about views of the residents of slums concerning the effectiveness of government programs.

Taking into account conceptual reviews, city case studies and innovations, Cheema offers concrete actions that need to be taken to improve access of marginalized groups to basic urban services. During this event, Cheema will be joined by some of the co-authors of this collaborative study.

About the editor and principal author   

Shabbir Cheema is a Senior Fellow at the Ash Center. Previously, he was the Director of Democratic Governance Division of United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Director of Asia-Pacific Governance and Democracy Initiative of East-West Center. He has taught at the University of Hawaii, University of Science in Malaysia and New York University. He is the author or co-author of Evolution of Development Thinking: Governance, Economics, Assistance and Security (Palgrave Macmillan 2016); Decentralizing Governance: Emerging Concepts and Practices (Brookings Institution Press in cooperation with Harvard University, 2007); and Building Democratic Institutions: Governance Reform in Developing Countries (Kumarian Press, 2005). 

Tune into the virtual event