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Title:Local government, taxes, and guns: Successful policy innovation in three Colombian cities PDF Logo
Authors:Gutiérrez S., Francisco
Gutiérrez, María Teresa
Guzmán, Tania
Arenas, Juan Carlos
Pinto, María Teresa
Issue Date:2011
Series/Report no.:Working paper // World Institute for Development Economics Research 2011,26
Abstract:This paper evaluates transformative policy innovations with respect to security and taxation in the three main Colombian cities: Bogotá, Medellín, and Cali. In the first two, such policies were associated with huge success. Elsewhere we (Gutiérrez et al. 2009) have tagged these transformation processes as 'urban/metropolitan miracles'. The term comes from the fact that both common citizens and pundits considered these to be extremely unlikely, that they were fast, and that they were large-scale. We argue, that the success of Bogotá and Medellín was the result of a set of institutional underpinnings basically related to the 1991 constitution; the opening of a window of opportunity for new political actors; and, as a result, the formation of a new government coalition and 'governance formula'. Anti-particularism was a language related to political demands - linked organically with the pro-1991 constitution movement - which became effective because it matched the crucial strategic concerns of heterogeneous constituencies with respect to security and state-building. It was the cement holding together the coalitions that allowed large-scale urban transformation, and it tamed the opposition of the rich because it was issued as the solution their (and everyone else's) collective action problems.
Subjects:urban security
state building
public policies
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:WIDER Working Papers, United Nations University (UNU)

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