Conclusions: Policy Changes and Policy Reversals

  • Katarina Đulić
  • Sanja Kmezić
  • William Bartlett


The concluding chapter analyses the reasons for differences and similarities behind various decentralisation approaches in the eight countries covered in the book. Key drivers of the decentralisation agenda were the international donor community and development agencies, along with the EU. The chapter compares the four groups of countries by analysing (1) the key contextual determinants and motivation for decentralisation; (2) the political economy behind political, territorial, and fiscal decentralisation, as well as the special issues that flavoured the process; and (3) the current trajectory of fiscal decentralisation and its outcomes. The authors conclude that the political commitment to decentralisation faded during the period of global economic crisis leading to major policy reversals in almost all countries in the region.


Fiscal decentralisation Policy reversals Southeastern Europe European integration 


  1. A new treaty: A new role for regions and local authorities. (2010). Brussels: European Union, Committee of the Regions.Google Scholar
  2. Avlijaš, S., & Bartlett, W. (2011). The political economy of decentralisation and regional policy in Serbia: Choices and outcomes. LSEE papers on Decentralisation and Regional Policy.Google Scholar
  3. Bartlett, W., Maleković, S., & Monastiriotis, V. (2013). Decentralization and local development in South East Europe. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bartlett, W., & Prica, I. (2018). Debt in the super-periphery: The case of the western Balkans. Third World Thematics. Scholar
  5. Decentralization in client countries—An evaluation of World Bank support 1990–2007 by independent evaluation group IEG. (2008). Washington, DC: The World Bank.Google Scholar
  6. Kmezić, S., Đulić, K., Jocović, M., & Kaluđerović, J. (2016). Fiscal decentralisation and local government financing in Serbia and Montenegro. Maribor: Institute for Local Self-Government and Public Procurement—Lex Localis.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Levitas, A., et al. (2016). Fiscal decentralization indicators for South-East Europe: 2006–2014. Skopje: Network of Associations of Local Authorities of South-East Europe (NALAS).Google Scholar
  8. Local and regional governments in Europe—Structures and competences. (2016). Brussels: CCRE CEMR.Google Scholar
  9. Musgrave, R. A. (1959). The theory of public finance. New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  10. Oates, W. E. (1972). Fiscal federalism. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.Google Scholar
  11. Popović, D. (1996). Poluvekovni razvoj fiskalnog sistema u Jugoslaviji. Beograd: Zadužbina Miloša Crnjanskog.Google Scholar
  12. Stojanović, S. (2005). Fiskalni federalizam. Beograd: Institut za uporedno pravo, Centar za antiratnu akciju.Google Scholar
  13. Tiebout, C. M. (1956). A pure theory of local expenditures. The Journal of Political Economy, 64(5), 416–424.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katarina Đulić
    • 1
  • Sanja Kmezić
    • 2
  • William Bartlett
    • 3
  1. 1.Faculty of Economics, Finance and AdministrationFEFABelgradeSerbia
  2. 2.University of GrazGrazAustria
  3. 3.London School of Economics and Political Science, European InstituteLondonUK

Personalised recommendations