In this Democracy That Delivers podcast, James Muraguri, CEO of the Institute of Public Finance Kenya (IPFK), is joined by Lars Benson, Regional Director for Africa, and host Ken Jaques. IPFK is a current CIPE partner working on budget analysis and budget participation. This is a critical topic relating to advocacy and strengthening the voice of the private sector.
Muraguri talks about the effects of devolution in Kenya, which is a form of decentralization that strengthens institutions and improves service delivery and citizen engagement regardless of where you live in Kenya. Corruption is still an issue that needs to be worked on, but Muraguri says that institutions are now much more committed to fighting it, especially on a county-level.
“Devolution is the best thing that happened to Kenya, because what happened in the 50 years before devolution was that a huge section of the country was marginalized,” says James Muraguri.
Katrin Kuhlmann, President and Founder of the New Markets Lab (NML) and Lecturer on Law at Harvard University, joins co-host Marc Schleifer and host Ken Jaques in this week’s Democracy that Delivers.
Kuhlmann dives into how NML came to be, and how her early career working in the trade and development sectors shaped what it is today. NML is a non-profit law and development center, and has worked closely with CIPE to develop projects in the field of technology. A recent study co-authored between CIPE and NML titled Digital Economy Enabling Environment Guide: Key Areas of Dialogue for Business and Policymakers was recently released.
“In the broader context of some of these pressing development issues, we asked ourselves how could you try to make a difference at an enterprise level, that would then translate all the way back up into these bigger policies?”
There seems to be a perception that democracy is on a decline, but Clay Fuller, a Jeane Kirkpatrick Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute feels this is incorrect. Democracy is not in crisis, instead, we have changed how we see and define it. In short, democracy is the game of rule, while autocracy is the game of survival.
Clay Fuller joins co-host John Morrell, Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific at CIPE and host Ken Jaques to talk about democratic and nondemocratic governments and how these systems are viewed today. Democracy can be defined as having uncertain political outcomes, having a focus on individual rights, and a focus on transparency and due process. Conversely, authoritarianism has more predictable political outcomes, more focus on collective rights, and a monopoly on political power with a lack of transparency. Listen on to learn more.
Food is a common language and the Livelihoods Innovation through Food Entrepreneurship (LIFE) Project understands the power gastrodiplomacy has of bringing everyone to the table. The LIFE project supports and encourages entrepreneurship, job creation and cross-cultural engagement in the food sector.
Joan Nathan, Cookbook Author and Advisory Council member of LIFE Project, and Johanna Mendelson Forman, PhD, Distinguished Fellow at the Henry L. Stimson Center and CIPE’s Consortium partner on the LIFE Project, join co-host Stephen Rosenlund and host Ken Jaques to discuss how the LIFE Food Enterprise Center (FEC) is building food businesses and creating sustainable livelihoods in Turkey. These efforts have transformative effects for refugees and their host communities by building relationships through food.
Many observers believe that China’s Belt and Road Initiative is a vast, well-laid and finely orchestrated plan to extend Chinese hegemony over much of the developing world. However, some argue that the BRI is just a vision, not a coordinated plan.
Andrew Davenport, Chief Operating Officer of RWR Advisory Group, joins Catherine Tai, CIPE’s Asia Program Officer, and host Ken Jaques to discuss the role the Belt Road has in promoting Chinese “corrosive capital.” They discuss the challenges that will likely become more intense in 2019 with regard to Chinese activity in the tech sector. Furthermore, Davenport mentions some of the work RWR has accomplished with their program IntelTrak, which is the most comprehensive global data set of Chinese and Russian business transactions to date.
Darko Brkan, founding President of Zašto ne, joins host Ken Jaques and Regional Director for Europe and Eurasia Natalia Otel Belan in a timely discussion on the current political and economic landscape in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and what some of the greatest barriers to progress are. Brkan shares his view about the integral position of civil society and the business community, and how Zašto ne’s work contributes to positive change in civic participation. Zašto ne, which means “Why Not” in Croatian, is a Sarajevo-based nongovernmental organization promoting civic activism, government accountability, and the use of digital media to deepen democracy. With CIPE’s support in 2018, Zašto ne launched a Tax Calculator and a Vote-O-Meter, aimed at helping to improve the citizens’ understanding of and interest in economic reforms.
John Agoglia, retired U.S. Army Colonel and former head of the U.S. Army Peacekeeping & Stability Operations Institute, joins us on Democracy That Delivers with CIPE Senior Program Officer for the Middle East and North Africa, Pamela Beecroft. Agoglia shares his experience working in Iraq setting up interim Iraqi governance conferences, as well as some of the top lessons learned. He discusses the issues of corruption vacuums appearing during sudden transition phases lacking stability, such as during privatization periods. He also discusses the importance of being patient when aiming to provide stable change in developing economies:
“We’re not going to have a solution tomorrow, we have to stay the course. It’s going to take a really long time to implement change and rebuild, but we can’t back out.”