Lessons on Improving Governance in a Complex Policy Environment in Rwanda

Publisher: Washington, DC: Mathematica Policy Research
Oct 03, 2014
Authors
Ira Nichols-Barrer, Jacqueline Berman, Ali Protik, Anu Rangarajan, Matt Sloan, and Lindsay Wood

Overall, the study found that the RTP produced a mixed set of results within the evaluation time frame. Some activities, such as funding community radio stations, appear to have successfully improved citizen trust in local media institutions. Likewise, the random assignment evaluation of the Strengthening Civic Participation component found evidence that the program increased citizens’ willingness to voice criticism about local government policies and services. Other activities, such as training judges to improve the quality of decision-writing or encouraging citizen feedback to police, did not show evidence of positive impacts on the governance indicators the RTP was ultimately designed to influence. 

The Rwanda Threshold Program (RTP), sponsored by the Millennium Challenge Corporation, was created to strengthen the rule of law, civil society, civic participation, media, and the inspectorate services of the national police. Mathematica designed a rigorous evaluation of the RTP’s key activities. The evaluation included a comparison group design for the national police program, pre-post surveys assessing the reach of new community radio stations created by the media program, a pair-wise random selection design for the local civic participation program (in which training activities were randomly assigned to half of Rwanda’s 30 districts in the program’s first year), and qualitative designs for several additional program components.