Union Parishad Governance Project

What the project is about?

 Women's Group Discussion
A fundamental requirement of UPGP is the dedication of 30% of all community schemes, for women by women, leading to a greater number of women-centered local development projects. Photo: UNDP Bangladesh.

The Union Parishad Governance Project (UPGP) aims to support the government of Bangladesh in meeting the Millennium Development Goals through effective, inclusive, participatory and democratic local governance. Its focus is to enhance the accountability local administration, transition the current service-delivery towards a pro-poor approach and to strengthen the Union Parishad (tier of local administration)’s institutions and policies.       

This project builds on the success of UNDP programming and policy support with regards to local governance since 2000. Its two first projects focused on the citizens’ participation and were implemented, through the years, in 388 unions. Inspired by the results of both, the government and UNDP, felt the need for continuing with institutional reforms and innovations in broader dimension.

The local government division of the Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives is the main partner in implementing this program.

What have we accomplished so far?

  • Inception workshops were held to start the project. They reunited members of the government, Union Parishads and civil society, for a total of seven district workshops, and 65 sub-district wokshops.
  • 63 trainings on planning and management for Union Parishads elected representatives were held. A total of 189 representatives have been trained so far.
  • To encourage improvement in institutional/governance functions of the Union Parishads, 400 performance-based grants were allocated. Union Parishad underwent complete governance assessments, with 41 indicators with regards to planning, revenue collection, service to citizens, and other related responsibilities of Union Parishads. The grants offer a discretionary funding window for local development activities.
  • Eight knowledge products (notably guideline and tools for planning and evaluation) have been conceived to support the newly elected Union Parishad members in their tasks as representatives. For example, a precise, concise and user-friendly guide has been created to inform the representatives of the content of the Union Parishads rules and law.
  • Seven district facilitators are now visiting regularly the Union Parishads representative to orient them on pressing issues, to reinforce their administrative and planning skills and to build their overall capacities in local governance.

Who finances it?

European Union $ 9,305,556  
DANIDA $ 5,585,552  
UNDP $ 2,000,000  
UNCDF $ 1,500,000  

Delivery in previous fiscal years

Year Amount
2012 $ 1,497,049
Project Overview
Project start date
01 December 2011
Estimated end date
30 November 2016
Geographic coverage
7 Districts of 7 Divisions
Focus Area
Democratic Governance
Project Officer
Jesmul Hasan and Sydur Rahman Molla
UNDP Project Manager
Dr. Md. Sarwar Bari
Local Government Division MOLG and RD
Project Documents
Project Document