A review of local government support programmes within the environmental sector: 2009-2014

This report, which the national Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) commissioned Urban-Econ Development Economists to compile in 2014, looks at local government support programmes within the environmental sector with the objective of understanding how to target support to municipalities more effectively. The environment is an important component of municipal Integrated Development Plans (IDPs), with environmental plans one of four over-arching meta-plans in the municipal instrument.

Source details: Five Year Review: Status-Quo Report (Draft), Prepared by Urban-Econ Development Economists, Prepared for Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).


Focusing Partnerships: A Sourcebook for Municipal Capacity Building in Public-Private Partnerships

This 2002 book is the result of a two-year research project carried out by GHK International in collaboration with the University of Birmingham and the United Nations Development Programme UNDP Public-Private Partnerships for the Urban Environment (PPPUE) facility. It sheds light on how to take advantage of the strengths of the private sector and places the participation thereof within urban management, community participation and poverty alleviation programmes, understanding that the demands placed on municipal officials are vast and varied.

Source details: MUNICIPAL CAPACITY BUILDING SERIES,  Janelle Plummer with contributions from Chris Heymans, Brad Gentry, Richard Slater, Steve Waddell, Earthscan Publications Ltd, London

Enhancing the Capabilities of Municipalities for Local Economic Development through Skills Training

This 2017 thesis investigates the extent to which the existing training interventions in municipalities can be able to build skills capacity for municipal staff to promote local economy, with special focus on two municipalities (Stellenbosch and Drakenstein), in the Cape Winelands District.

Source details: SocioEconomic Challenges, Volume 1, Issue 4, 2017
Authors: Richard Douglas Kamara PhD Student, Stellenbosch University (SU), South Africa Samantha Leonard Dr., Senior Lecturer, Nelson Mandela University (NMU), South Africa Richard Haines Professor, Nelson Mandela University (NMU), South Africa

Capacity self-assessment as a catalyst for improved municipal service delivery

This research paper illustrates that accurate and truthful capacity assessments are a fundamental phase of any capacity building process, and that capacity assessments play a fundamental role in reaching the necessary performance efficiency. Service delivery performance enhancements by municipalities are becoming increasingly necessary.

At the same time, however, the majority of municipalities in South Africa find themselves under-capacitated. Some municipalities are aware of the lack of capacity within their organisation, but are unable to identify, define and quantify these shortcomings. Many other municipalities are not aware of their capacity shortfalls. In both cases, this is often caused by the lack of necessary systems and procedures to assess the different dimensions of organisational capacity. In this regard, this research paper introduces a proposed Subjective Municipal Capacity Self-Assessment Model (SMCSAM) as an alternative solution to the current practices of the Municipal Demarcation Board.

It is intended that this model be used internally by municipalities to sustain internal capacity building and performance enhancement initiatives.


Municipal Infrastructure: Roles and Responsibilities of National Sector Departments, Provincial Counterparts and Municipalities

municipalinfrastructureThis booklet, issued by the Department: Provincial and Local Government in 2006, provided an overview of municipal infrastructure, the responsibilities of different spheres of government, the service delivery life cycle, and who is responsible for monitoring. It also provides insight into what support can be expected from different sectors, which varies depending on the nature of the sector (for example, support for a roads project is different to that required for a sanitation project).
The roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders have been drawn from various legislative, policy and infrastructure frameworks and consolidated into one useful document. The booklet outlines the following for sector departments:

  • The role they need to play towards ensuring that municipal infrastructure development is part of the sustainable human settlements (as opposed to the delivery of sectoral infrastructure, which takes place in a parallel manner).
  • The framework within which municipal infrastructure support should be provided.
  • The importance of collaboration across sectors.
  • Specific support to be provided to municipalities in terms of municipal infrastructure through the service delivery life cycle.

It also aims to clarify the following for municipalities:

  • Their roles and responsibilities in the delivery of municipal infrastructure.
  • The type of support they can access from different sector departments and from the provinces.

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