• Working Paper

The Political and Intergovernmental Dynamics of Property Tax Reforms in Senegal

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In sub-Saharan Africa, interest in strengthening property tax systems is often hindered by political and institutional barriers. Yet, centralized Francophone systems contrast with Anglophone decentralized property tax administration. Weak incentives for central governments to enhance tax collection and challenging intergovernmental collaboration can pose risks for reform. Using the case of Senegal, this paper examines the circumstances prompting political support for reform and the impact of interinstitutional and interinstitutional collaboration barriers. The case of Senegal is distinctive as the central has initiated property tax reforms led by the Directorate General of Taxes and Estates (DGID), despite the fact that the benefits accrue to local governments. Drawing on data from interviews and documents, the analysis sheds light on the role and intricate relationship between political motivations for reform and collaboration dynamics and their impact on the effectiveness of property tax mobilization, especially in centralized systems where municipalities traditionally have lesser roles.

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Policy Lead

Research Lead

Research Officer

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Camille Barras

Policy Lead

Camille Barras is the Policy Lead for the Local Government Revenue Initiative (LoGRI). Her areas of work and interest encompass public governance and administration, subnational governance, intergovernmental relations and state-society relations – and their connection with taxation. She is also interested in questions related to the effectiveness and evolution of international development as a field, in evidence generation and uptake as well as in research methods (quantitative, mixed, evaluation). She completed, in 2023, a PhD at the University of Cambridge, investigating the effects of decentralization on political attitudes and behaviours, and holds academic qualifications in political science, public policy and law. Previously, she worked during seven years at the intersection of practice and research, mainly in the international development sector across a variety of organizations and projects in West/North Africa, South/East Asia and Europe. Among others, she worked for a local governance project at UNDP, was a project manager for impact evaluations at the Center for Evaluation and Development and consulted for the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.


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Colette Nyirakamana

Research Lead

Dr. Colette Nyirakamana is Research Lead for the LoGRI program, and Senior Research Associate at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the University of Toronto. Prior to joining LoGRI, Colette worked as program lead of the African Property Tax Initiative  (APTI) at the International Centre for Tax and Development, where she was in charge of supporting APTI-funded researchers, leading research projects, engaging with key stakeholders and advising governments in the design of property tax reform efforts. Her research focuses on local finances with particular emphasis on the institutional and political factors that create favourable and unfavourable conditions for effective revenue mobilization. She holds a doctoral degree in Comparative Public Policy from McMaster University in Canada


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Marie-Reine Mukazayire

Research Officer

Marie-Reine is a researcher and recent graduate from the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy. In her studies, she specialized in Global Development and Global Justice. She is interested in the ways sub-Saharan francophone African states can build capacity to ensure better service delivery while facilitating human-centric sustainable growth. 


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