Transformation & Reform


How regions, countries, and localities have confronted and overcome their own challenges is instructive for leaders and citizens facing challenges today. Drawing on both historical analysis and lessons from its work advising leaders, ISE continues to document a diverse set of cases of transformation and reforms. These cases provide insight into how leaders and citizens developed a reform agenda, the policies and institutions advanced reforms, how the market and citizens were engaged, and what communications strategies were employed. Explore the Country Transition and Transformation paper series for our analysis of successful transformations.

Country Transitions and Transformations


The Country Transitions and Transformations series charts how regions, countries, and localities have confronted and overcome the challenges of statebuilding. The case studies explore the economic, social, and political dynamics of large-scale transformations, offering key insights into “what works” for tackling the pressing issues of today. Cases range from the making of Turkey’s modern state to state-level reform in India and Finland’s consensus-building citizenship model. View the entire series here.

Op-ed: Post-Maria, Puerto Rico has chance to reimagine its future

This article originally appeared in The Hill on November 2, 2017 By Clare Lockhart and David Thorpe Hurricane Maria left no corner of Puerto Rico untouched, meting out systematic destruction to the island and the lives…

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State Building in Conflict-Affected & Fragile States: A Comparative Study

In conflict-affected or fragile states there is often a significant gap between what the state is able to deliver and what the citizens of that state, as well as international partners, expect the state to…

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State Building in Conflict Affected and Fragile States: A Comparative Study; Technical Working Paper

This analysis provides a comparison of fiscal performance improvements over time for Afghanistan and Timor-Leste. It reviews changes in the quality of public financial management systems as revealed by Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability (PEFA)…

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The Blight of Auction-Based Budgeting: What is it and how can we deal with it?

The pervasiveness of auction-based budgeting is a high-risk problem in aid dependent countries. Allocating a budget based on a willingness to pay is extremely dangerous. Selling off budgets to the highest bidder undermines the whole…

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Medium-Term Focus for Short-Term Problem Solving

The modern medium-term and policy-based budgeting system was invented in the 1970s in Australia. It started with the use of internal medium-term fiscal forecasts of revenues and costs of existing policies. Political events then allowed…

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