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This study analyses how the implementation of PPPs to operate rural water infrastructures and deliver water to local population has led to a new accountability archetype.Design/methodology/approachThe archetype theory is used to analyse the process of implementing PPPs as a new archetype and setting up systems and structures of accountability between contracting parties. The empirical part of the study is based on extensive document analysis in an East African country. Documents analysed are from governmental sources, UNICEF and the World Bank and cover a period from 1998 to early 2019.FindingsThe process of implementing PPPs was revolutionary at the national level and evolutionary at micro levels. The sequence of the change process moved from central to peripheral. The linearity followed a reorientation track strategy. Setting up systems and structure of accountability was evolutionary, peripheral to central following the reorientation strategy. National authorities reacted proactively to comments and suggestions from international donors and local population. However, not all districts have fully implemented PPPs in their rural water sector. The structure of accountability at the local level, however, still suffers from logistical and professional capacity constraints.Research limitations/implicationsEmpirical findings cannot be generalised to other situations, but the theoretical framework used in this study can be applied elsewhere.Practical implicationsGiving priority to hearing from end users themselves before designing and implementing policies that intend to respond to specific local needs is recommended.Originality/valueThis study explains the ways in which micro-organisational change can lead to revolutionary archetypes such as PPPs, whereas the implementation of systems and the structure of accountability at inter-organisational level remain evolutionary.
Journal of Accounting in Emerging Economies – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 11, 2020
Keywords: Accountability; Archetype; Change; Evolutionary; Public private partnership; Revolutionary; Water; Africa
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