Person:
Yilmaz, Serdar

Global Practice on Governance, The World Bank
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Fields of Specialization
Decentralization, Local government finance, Local economic development, Municipal finance, Fiscal federalism, Public finance
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Global Practice on Governance, The World Bank
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Last updated: January 31, 2023
Biography
Dr. Serdar Yilmaz is a local economic development specialist with expertise in public finance, regional development and local government finance with extensive experience in developing and transition countries around the world. Working in the various departments of the World Bank, Dr. Yilmaz has contributed to policy reforms in over fifteen developing and transition countries around the world, including Bosnia, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ethiopia, Republic of Georgia, Ghana, Iran, Jordan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tanzania, Turkey and Yemen. Dr. Yilmaz has authored and contributed to numerous books, book chapters, articles, and reports on intergovernmental finance (fiscal decentralization), public expenditure management, and poverty reduction. In addition to his academic research and expertise in the management and provision of technical assistance, Dr. Yilmaz has considerable experience in the development and delivery of academic courses and professional training programs in the areas of economic development, municipal finance and fiscal federalism.
Citations 69 Scopus

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
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Decentralization or Fiscal Autonomy? What Does Really Matter? Effects on Growth and Public Sector Size in European Transition Countries

2004-03, Meloche, Jean-Philippe, Vaillancourt, Francois, Yilmaz, Serdar

This paper examines the importance of fiscal autonomy in the analysis of decentralization. Using new data published by the OECD (2001 and 2002), it reproduces several indicators and proposes new measures of decentralization that take into consideration su-bnational governments' autonomy over their revenues. Two models are reproduced: Davoodi and Zou (1998) on decentralization and economic growth, and Oates (1985), on decentralization and public sector size. Some evidence suggests that fiscal autonomy positively affects economic growth. Also, it seems to affect the size of the state, but evidence on this relation is limited. Despite some statistical weaknesses, there are sufficient indications to argue that sub-national governments' fiscal autonomy should be a major concern when measuring decentralization.

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On the Measurement and Impact of Fiscal Decentralization

2002-03, Ebel, Robert D., Yilmaz, Serdar

The typical post-Bretton Woods era development approach that emphasized central government-led development efforts has changed dramatically, and local governments have clearly emerged as players in development policy. The thinking about what is important to achieve in development objectives is changing as fiscal decentralization reforms are being pursued by many countries around the world. In this context, a number of studies have attempted to quantify the impact of decentralization by relating some measure of it to economic outcomes of fiscal stability, economic growth, and public sector size. But decentralization is surprisingly difficult to measure. Nearly all cases examining the relationship between decentralization and macroeconomic performance have relied on the Government Finance Statistics (GFS) of the International Monetary Fund. However, despite its merits, GFS falls short in providing a full picture of fiscal decentralization. For some countries, however, there is data that more accurately captures fiscal responsibilities among different types of governments.

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Centralization, Decentralization, and Conflict in the Middle East and North Africa

2008-11, Tosun, Mehmet Serkan, Yilmaz, Serdar

This paper examines broadly the intergovernmental structure in the Middle East and North Africa region, which has one of the most centralized government structures in the world. The authors address the reasons behind this centralized structure by looking first at the history behind the tax systems of the region. They review the Ottoman taxation system, which has been predominantly influential as a model, and discuss its impact on current government structure. They also discuss the current intergovernmental structure by examining the type and degree of decentralization in five countries representative of the region: Egypt, Iran, West Bank/Gaza, Tunisia, and Yemen. Cross-country regression analysis using panel data for a broader set of countries leads to better understanding of the factors behind heavy centralization in the region. The findings show that external conflicts constitute a major roadblock to decentralization in the region.

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Strengthening Local Government Budgeting and Accountability

2008-11, Schaeffer, Michael, Yilmaz, Serdar, Schaeffer, Michael G.

In many developing and middle-income countries, decentralization reforms are promoting changes in governance structures that are reshaping the relationship between local governments and citizens. The success of these decentralization reforms depends on the existence of sound public financial systems both at the central and local levels. This paper focuses on the role of budgeting as a critical tool in reform efforts, highlighting problems that might impede successful local government budget development and implementation. The attainment of effective local government accountability and transparency is not an end itself, but rather it represents the means to support better decision-making on national and local budgeting. Community based schemes for enhancing local government accountability need to combine legal, political, and administrative mechanisms with proactive community involvement. Of particular importance are the legal and budgetary instruments that require input from local community members on certain local government decisions and instruments that increase accessibility for the press or the general public at large to information on government activities.