Decentralisation in ‘Disadvantaged Regions’: Lessons from West Timor for the Challenges to Decentralisation in Timor-Leste

Dennis Shoesmith

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


The initial findings of a pilot study on the experience of decentralisation in the regency of Timor Tengah Selatan (TTS) in West Timor suggest the challenges that could face the actual operation of decentralised governance in the proposed new municipalities in Timor-Leste. TTS, and the province of Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT) generally, are classified in Indonesia as poor and Disadvantaged Regions (DR, Daerah Tertinggal). The Ministry of Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigrations (KEMENDESA) in Jakarta is currently reconsidering the model of decentralisation in DRs. The social, economic and cultural profile of NTT would appear to share commonalities with that of rural Timor-Leste. The experience in NTT raises questions, then, regarding what is an appropriate model of decentralised governance in localities in Timor-Leste which lack the necessary human resources and economic resources to presently sustain an effective, autonomous and representative system of municipal governance.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017
Event2017 Timor-Leste Studies Association: New Research on Timor-Leste - UNTL Liceu Campus, Dili, Timor-Leste
Duration: 29 Jun 201730 Jun 2017


Conference2017 Timor-Leste Studies Association

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