Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Own policy goals are measured using the question:
“Please list the three most important policy goals that you have for your municipality.”
Preferences over the policy goals of donors are measured using these questions:
“Would you recommend to donors that they should focus on supporting these three policy goals? Or, should they focus on other policy objectives?”
“What policy objectives, then, do you think they should focus on?”
We will then categorize the extent to which politicians’ responses are “pro-poor” and are “pro-marginalized”. The Maoists started the People’s War with the explicit goal of empowering historically marginalized caste and ethnic groups, such as the Dalits and especially the Janajatis. Therefore, we are interested both in policies that specifically benefit the poor and that benefit these marginalized groups. We use the Nepal National Governance Survey (NNGS), conducted in 2017-18, which measured citizens’ policy priorities for the new federal government. Specifically, we will use responses to the question: “In your opinion, what should be the three main priorities of provincial and local governments for the next five years? (record three priorities)”. We will focus on policies that are favored by Janajatis and Dalits. We will account for spatial variation in citizens’ policy priorities. We will also have our colleagues at the Nepal Administrative Staff Collect (NASC) confirm these priorities.
Priorities over eliminating errors of inclusion or exclusion from public programs are measured on a 1-4 scale using the following question:
“Would you value more a program that focused on (a) methods to identify uncovered beneficiaries or (b) methods to identify beneficiaries who do not need assistance?”
Preferences for cash versus in-kind social protection payments are measured through an index which aggregates the responses to these two questions, both measured on a 1-5 scale:
“I would like to know if you strongly agree, or agree, with the first or second (or neither). Sometimes social protection payments are given as cash, sometimes they are given in-kind, for example as food). Statement 1: Assistance should be given as cash so that people can decide what they need on their own. Statement 2: Assistance should be given in kind so that scarce social protection resources are not wasted”
“When people receive support from the government in cash, they will use it for things they do not really need. Do you strongly agree, agree, neither agree nor disagree, disagree, or strongly disagree with this statement?”
Preferences for redistribution are measured through an index which aggregates the responses to these two questions, both measured on a 1-5 scale:
“It is a problem if children from poor and rich backgrounds have unequal opportunities in life. Do you strongly agree, agree, neither agree nor disagree, disagree, or strongly disagree with this statement?”
“Do you support more policies to increase the opportunities for children born in poor families and to foster more equality of opportunity, such as education policies? Naturally, to finance an expansion of policies promoting equal opportunity, it would have to be the case that either other policies are scaled down or taxes are raised.”
Support for federalism is measured on a 1-5 scale using the following question:
“The First Directive Principle of the 2015 constitution states: 'It shall be the political objective of the State to strengthen a federal democratic republican system to ensure an atmosphere where democratic rights are exercised by acknowledging sovereignty, independence and integrity of the country to be of utmost importance; by protecting freedom, equality, property and all citizens through rule of law; by embracing the norms and values of fundamental rights and human rights, gender equality, proportional inclusion, participation and social justice'. The federal system has now been in place for four years. Do you strongly agree, agree, neither agree nor disagree, disagree, or strongly disagree that Federalism has achieved these goals?”
Beliefs about the current inclusion of marginalized groups into policy decisions are measured on a 1-3 scale using the following question:
“I would like to know with which of the following statements you agree the most.
Statement 1: In modern day Nepal, historically excluded groups do not have their voices heard when it comes to policy decisions.
Statement 2: In modern day Nepal, historically excluded groups do have their voices heard when it comes to policy decisions, but their preferences are not implemented.
Statement 3: In modern day Nepal, historically excluded groups do have their voices heard when it comes to policy decisions, and their preferences are implemented.”
Beliefs about excluded groups who need to be included in policy decisions are measured using the question:
“When you think of inclusion, along which of the following lines do you think your municipality needs the most attention to include the excluded groups?”