Al-Dahdah, Edouard

Global Practice on Governance
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Public sector management, Economic history, Political economy of development
Global Practice on Governance
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Edouard Al-Dahdah is a Senior Public Sector Specialist at the World Bank. He worked at the World Bank Institute and the Middle East and North Africa region. He is a co-author of the upcoming World Development Report 2017 on Governance and the Law, and of Better Governance for Development in the Middle East and North Africa (2003). His fields of interest include economic history, the political economy of development and governance empirics. He did his graduate work at the University of Chicago and Georgetown University, and his undergraduate work at the American University of Beirut.

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 2 of 2
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    Leadership and Institutional Change in the Public Provision of Transportation Infrastructure : An Analysis of India's Bihar
    (Taylor and Francis, 2013-02-07) Mazaheri, Nimah ; Al-Dahdah, Edouard ; Poundrik, Sandeep ; Chodavarapu, Soujanya
    This study examines the role of leadership in the development of transportation infrastructure, specifically bridges, in the Indian state of Bihar during the 2000s. Drawing from interviews and quantitative data, we show that leadership was a critical factor in fostering institutional change in the state government's bridge organisation. Three leaders worked as a coalition to mobilise resources, enforce new rules of the game, and motivate staff; thereby transforming the organisation from a chronic under-provider of bridges to a more effective provider. Our study contributes to the emerging research about how the role of leadership shapes development outcomes in low-income countries.
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    Rules on Paper, Rules in Practice: Enforcing Laws and Policies in the Middle East and North Africa
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2016-07-19) Al-Dahdah, Edouard ; Corduneanu-Huci, Cristina ; Raballand, Gael ; Sergenti, Ernest ; Ababsa, Myriam
    The primary focus of this book is on a specific outcome of the rule of law: the practical enforcement of laws and policies, and the determinants of this enforcement, or lack thereof. Are there significant and persistent differences in implementation across countries? Why are some laws and policies more systematically enforced than others? Are “good” laws likely to be enacted, and if not, what stands in the way? We answer these questions using a theoretical framework and detailed empirical data and illustrate with case studies from Morocco, Tunisia and Jordan. We believe that the best way to understand the variation in the drafting and implementation of laws and policies is to examine the interests and incentives of those responsible for these tasks – policymakers and bureaucrats. If laws and their enforcement offer concrete benefits to these ruling elites, they are more likely to be systematically enforced. If they don't, implementation is selective, discretionary, if not nil. Our first contribution is in extending the application of the concept of the rule of law beyond its traditional focus on specific organizations like the courts and the police, to economic sectors such as customs, taxation and land inheritance, in a search for a direct causal relationship with economic development outcomes. Instead of limiting ourselves to a particular type of organization or a legalistic approach to the rule of law, we present a broader theory of how laws are made and implemented across different types of sectors and organizations. Our second contribution is in demonstrating how powerful interests affect implementation outcomes. The incentives elites have to build and support rule-of-law institutions derive from the distribution of power in society, which is partly a historical given. The point we make is that it is not deterministic. Realigning the incentive structures for reform among key actors and organizations, through accountability and competition, can dramatically improve the chances that rule-of-law institutions will take root. On the other hand, building the capacity of organizations without first changing institutional incentives is likely to lead to perverse outcomes.