Regional Development Agencies in Turkey on the Scope of Governance and Local Elites: An Evaluation after 10-years-experience
Under the influence of globalization and the European Union membership accession process, important administrative reform initiatives have been taken in Turkey in the 2000s in the framework of economic, social, political, cultural and technological needs. In this process, central government agencies and administrations, public financial management, local governments and similar public organizations have undergone important transitions. The most important initiative taken to achieve regional governance is the establishment of Regional Development Agencies (RDAs). The present study performs a 10-year longitudinal analysis of RDAs in Turkey in the context of governance and local elites. The first phase of the study was conducted in 2010, and the second phase was conducted in 2019. The aim of the study is to evaluate whether RDAs have realized their potential in local democracy, sustainable development and decentralization, as well as to define the characteristics of policies to be pursued in line with further development of these agencies. Consequently, it has been observed that maintaining a centralized state tradition, along with institutional deficiencies, has transformed RDAs into an apparatus of the central government.
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