Libya—Taqarib

Client: U.S. Agency for International Development

Duration: 2019-2025

Region: Middle East and North Africa

Country: Libya

Solutions: Governance

Among the first acts of Libya’s revolutionary government in November 2011 was to create a Ministry of Local Government, a first step in fulfilling the people’s commitment to la markaziyya, or decentralization, a core value of the revolution, seen as insurance against the emergence of another brutal and totalizing dictatorship. In June 2012, Libya’s National Transitional Council approved Law 59, which outlined an audacious plan for fiscal and administrative governance at the municipal level.

The Libya Local Governance and Civil Society (LGCS) Program, locally known as “Taqarib” (the Arabic term for coming together or growing closer), supports Libya’s political transition by strengthening the pillars of a stable, democratic, and responsive Libyan state.

Taqarib empowers local governments, reinforces community bonds, and improves people’s standard of living. Taqarib helps citizens engage in public dialogue, prioritize public resource allocations, and understand the roles and responsibilities of local government. The project links enhancements to service delivery at the municipal level with national efforts to improve the execution of decentralization policy, and with efforts to undertake evidence-based reform.

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Sample Activities

  • Design and execute strategies for service delivery at the municipal level.
  • Use a Municipal Performance Index to gauge the administrative capacity of local governments, quantify their delivery of essential services and infrastructure, as well as monitor the corresponding public perceptions of governments’ effectiveness and legitimacy.
  • Enhance the participation of residents (including persons with disabilities, women, youth, and ethnic minorities), civil society organizations, and the private sector in service improvements and decentralization policy implementation.
  • Partner with community organizations to generate public support for local revenue generation, public-private partnerships, city-to-city collaboration, and other tools that are important for achieving sustainable development and self-reliance.
  • Assist municipalities and national institutions with drafting policy documents, operational manuals, procedural templates, and regulatory standards for use in managing municipal affairs.
  • Advocate for innovative local solutions to municipal service delivery challenges to ensure they are incorporated into national legislation, regulation, and policy.
  • Assist in the reform of national institutions that are substantially involved with Libya’s decentralization process.

Select Results

  • Developed courses used to train more than 1,291 municipal staff and volunteers.
  • Created an e-learning platform with more than 190 training courses in topics related to municipal work.
  • Delivered 3,294 pieces of equipment and supplies to municipal partners for use in emergency response, street repair, park restoration, solid waste management, street lighting, market rehabilitation, municipal media offices, and municipal environmental sanitation offices.
  • Implementing 168 visible improvement services.
  • Contributed to the establishment of emergency operations centers in 16 partner municipalities, including their adoption of international emergency management standards tailored for local applications.
  • Conducted more than 52 social accountability activities led by civil society organizations.
  • Provided grants to 32 local organizations to support service delivery and further decentralization.
  • Developed 19 decentralization policies and manuals to support municipal work.
  • Conducted and published 12 case studies on innovative local solutions to municipal service delivery challenges.
  • Provided training to 82 members of the municipal guard and 31 municipal media offices.
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