Centre for Devolution Studies (CDS)

centre for devolution studies


Devolution is now a reality in Kenya. Having elected into office the entire leadership of the devolved structures, the task ahead, as a country, is to ensure that all the governance structures of devolution work. The Kenya School of Government has the mandate to facilitate public service capacity building.

The devolution center is a center to enable KSG to coordinate, capture, organize, and store devolution capacity building activities which include training, research and consultancies.  The Center facilitates knowledge acquisition that facilitates better comprehension of devolution in the public administration and paves the way for taking up appropriate interventions to improve governance standards which in turn would help improve delivery of public services to Kenyans.

“Excellence in public service capacity development in devolved government”

“To become a premier centre of excellence on devolution studies and support public service transformation in devolved government”

Thematic Areas

The devolution center has four thematic areas:

1.    Coordination of Capacity Building Initiatives
The center will be the coordination center for capacity building activities which include training, research and consultancy. The devolution center will be designed to institutionalize the devolution process.  

2.    Knowledge Management Center
A knowledge hub management and dissemination center for print and electronic information on devolution in Kenya and information on decentralization and devolution elsewhere globally. CDS hoses an e-center platform for e-learning modules and other relevant devolution material
 Research, Consultancy and Policy Development

A Think Tank for devolution at to carry out research and consultancy to inform public policy and devolution. Research and policy analysis to buttress and strengthen good governance and devolution in Kenya. The CDS will actively engage in shaping public policy, advising governments

3.    Collaboration and Partnerships
The devolution center will work collaboratively and support relationships with key stakeholders in the devolution process. Provide a network of key collaborating institutions to promote a collaborative approach in transformative public service.


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Centre for Devolution Studies (CDS)
Kenya School of Government
Habel Nyamu Building, Room 212
P.O. Box 23030-00604
Lower Kabete, Nairobi, Kenya
Tel. + 254- 20-
Website: www.ksg.ac.ke

Objectives of the CDS

The CDS is a convening platform for scholars, the national government and the 47 county governments, private sector, civil society, development partners, and institutional partners and reputed Think Tanks, Foundations, and global research centers to dialogue and share experiences and knowledge on devolution.

  • Be a Think Tank of the Kenya School of Government by carrying out research and consultancy to inform public policy and devolution.
  • Undertake leadership development programs that will tackle the complex challenges that face national and county governments in the delivery of transformative service under devolution.
  • Provide excellence in transformative leadership training and advancing policy-relevant knowledge in devolution.
  • Develop devolution guide books and modules for induction of national and county government policy makers and public service employees.
  • Promote capacity building and strengthen the institutional framework of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the national and county governments as resource persons and policy experts at the Kenya National Assembly (parliamentary and senate committee hearings) and county assembly committee hearings.
  • Organize, manage, support, collaborate, sponsor, and participate in seminars, conferences, induction training, commissions, workshops, symposia, reviews and appraisals, and lectures in devolution and transformative public service.
  • Conduct research and policy analysis to buttress and strengthen good governance and devolution in Kenya.
  • Serve as Kenya’s premier repository of the knowledge and practice of devolution, policy making, and good governance in Kenya.

How CDS Relates to the Core Mandate of the Kenya School of Government

The Center complements the mandate of the Kenya School of Government in providing learning and development programmes to build capacity for the public service, provide training, consultancy and research services that inform public policy, provide intellectual support to parliamentary and county assembly committees on matters of policy design and evaluation, promote national development and instill high standards of competence, and integrity in the public service, in establishing superior professional networks and linkages with renowned schools of government and international centers of learning  across the world.

Comparative Institutions  

The State University of New York’s Center for International Development or SUNY/CID, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs John F. Kennedy School of Government, The Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) Stanford University, Center for Global Development, the Earth Institute Columbia University.

Institutional Organization

Sustaining the CDS

Although the centre will be financed through institutional budgetary allocation by the Council of the Kenya School of Government to the extent of funding available, the majority of its funding will come from user fees and tuition raised through educational training, research, and consultancy services for national and county governments in the area of devolution and public service. In addition, a stellar record of Request for Proposal Funding, Research Grants and Fellowships, and Grant Proposals will be submitted to a number of international development partners, philanthropic organizations, and foundations such as the Rockefeller Foundation, the Ford Foundation, Foundation Center www.foundationcenter.org, DANIDA, USAID, SIDA, CIDA, GIZ, UNDP etc. A tentative Donor Round Table is proposed on April 5, 2013.


Action Plan

Geographic Area Served
The Republic of Kenya.

Target Population
The National and County Governments of Kenya.

View and Download Public Participation Series Papers

Public Participation Series Papers launched at KSG by the Principal Secretariat State Department of Devolution on February 25, 2015.

download public participation series papers

Click below to read more on Public Participation to Kenya's Devolution

Public Participation Key to Kenya’s Devolution