Service delivery (old)


Service delivery

How to use this guide

This guide can be read online using the links to its sections above. The full guide can also be downloaded as a PDF (20 pages; 294 KB).

The guide includes one-paragraph summaries of key texts. Clicking on the link in a document title will take the reader to a second, longer summary of the document. Direct links to the original text are also given.

About this guide

How can we ensure that basic services reach the poorest?  What is the best way of involving service users and ensuring that providers are accountable to them?  Are non-state service providers pro-poor, and how should the state engage with them? What are the particular challenges for delivering services in conflict or fragile environments? 

This guide provides an introduction to a few of the key recent debates for development practitioners involved in the provision of basic services, particularly health, education, water and sanitation.  It includes academic articles, donor reports and case studies from a range of developing countries.

The guide was originally prepared by Zoë Scott. The GSDRC appreciates the contributions of Richard Batley (International Development Department, University of Birmingham), Anu Joshi (Institute of Development Studies), Claire Hughes (Social Development Direct), and Nicola Dahrendorf (DFID).  Comments, questions or documents for consideration should be sent to

Latest Additions

The following document summaries were added in January 2012: