Evidence from other countries

An international analysis of peer-reviewed research into de-centralisation was carried out by Newcastle University and the London School of Economics for DCLG in 2011.   It noted that most existing studies were concerned with measuring impacts at the subnational scales, for example in Spanish Autonomous Communities, Swiss Cantons and Italian Regions, and only in a few cases with the municipality and not at all with communities and neighbourhoods.

 In broad terms, high degrees of decentralisation are associated with higher levels of subjective well-being among citizens. Against the view that worse-off regions would be disadvantaged because of capacity and funding constraints, which could prevent them from effectively implementing policies which could reduce interpersonal inequality, it is precisely these less well-off regions which seem to be benefiting the most from the inequality-reducing effects of fiscal decentralisation processes.