Strategies for Policy Reform: Experiences from Around the World

Across the world, hundreds of organizations have led the transformation of their countries by promoting a strong private sector, free market economies, and democratic policymaking. In the emerging markets countries of Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Africa, their carefully targeted strategies have built the momentum needed to make the economy competitive, expand opportunity, and give citizens a voice in policymaking. These programs have defended freedoms, strengthened civil society, broadened debate, and built consensus for reform. Their accomplishments give hope to reformers elsewhere and illuminate paths to a better future.

This book presents case studies of effective, innovative reform programs designed and implemented by business associations, think tanks, and other independent organizations in partnership with the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE). These programs have improved democratic governance and the business climate to deliver tangible benefits to citizens. They are all founded on the conviction that progress requires freedom and that the private sector must lead the way in creating institutional change to expand freedom.

Each chapter in this book illustrates an important theme in the development of democratic, free market societies. Whether you are interested in better governance, legal reform, greater opportunity for excluded groups, or fighting corruption, you will find relevant strategies tested by diverse organizations. Nearly all of the strategies involve elements of policy advocacy and private sector participation; however, the details of the various programs reflect remarkable creativity and practicality.

As these cases attest, reform can be accomplished in many different ways. No country has the exact same problems as another, and no organization has the exact same resources, talents, and mission as another. Reform efforts are most effective when tailored to the needs and strengths of a country and an organization. Consider strategies that have been proven successful in other countries and adapt them to your specific situation.

Select the themes that are most interesting and relevant to you. Which themes reflect the priority needs in your country? Determine which strategies make sense in your cultural, business, and policy setting. Explore new ideas to expand private sector participation, communicate your message, and get the attention of policymakers. Choose and adapt approaches that might work for you.

Carefully selected, realistic reform strategies can pave the way for the development of prosperous, democratic societies. I hope this book may inspire and inform your work ahead.

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