Female voters showing ink mark on their fingers after voting at the 2011 national election in Tunisa © Philippe Lissac /GODONGGettyImages

Governance and democracy

A peaceful and productive society is based on effective state institutions. Good governance in this sense means effective and efficient structures which provide optimal support to citizens in leading a safe and productive life in line with their desires and opportunities. Essentially, this involves a combination of democracy, the social welfare state and the rule of law.

Promotion of good governance goes beyond the government sector and includes all relevant actors from the private sector and society. The aims: To balance interests and focus on common goals, particularly reducing poverty and providing access to state services for all. To make administrative structures participative, efficient and solution oriented.

Good Governance

Good Governance

GIZ assists its partners in establishing democratic systems and networks across all social groups, as a way of identifying relevant solutions to political, economic and social challenges. We advise at every political level – national, regional and local – and contribute our experience to the institutional reform processes. Respect for human rights and gender equality are central elements in this.

GIZ is active in the field of administration, law and justice, offers effective strategies in the struggle against corruption, and promotes responsible use of public finances. In fragile states, it supports the establishment of the security sector. We do this by providing customised services from a single source. We expand the capability of existing institutions, so that they can manage processes themselves – effectively and efficiently. The benefits are obvious: the future is manageable. We advise you, so you can take control yourself.

Democracy and the rule of law

Democracy Promotion

If democracy is to develop, it needs institutionalised procedures and political involvement, all of the time, not only at elections. Therefore we help enhance the performance of democratic institutions such as parliaments, municipal councils, courts of audit and electoral commission. Our aim is to help realise the fundamental principles of good government and the rule of law.

Förderung von Demokratie und politischer Teilhabe Promoting democracy and political participation Promotion de la démocratie et de la participation politique Fomento de la democracia y la participación política

Pro-poor governance

Many of our partner countries must aim their policies more to poverty reduction and pro-poor growth. We support our partners in the formulation of political negotiations geared to poverty reduction. Apart from making actions pro-poor this is also a way to better integrate poor and disadvantaged women and men into social and economic processes.

Armutsorientierte Regierungsführung Pro-poor governance


There is no blueprint for gender equality that can be applied in all countries. Every society has its own understanding of gender roles. We promote the equal participation by women and men - in programmes specifically directed to women as well as in procedures and processes of all GTZ-programs. These interventions aim to overcome existing disadvantages faced by women and girls.

Gender Gender

Corruption prevention

With our advisory services we help institutions of our partner countries to gear their work on the principles of integrity, transparency and accountability. Our approach involves anchoring anti-corruption firmly in the structures and processes of our partners. We also advise our partners when conflicts of interest arise, and devise appropriate concepts for ethical conduct.

Korruptionsprävention Corruption prevention

Human rights

Human rights lay out the minimum requirements for a life in dignity and liberty. Every human being is born with these inherent and inalienable rights. We support our partner countries to align their policies and institutional settings to the imperatives of human rights. Equally we help put pertinent policies into practise.

Menschenrechte Human rights Droits humains

Law and justice

The rule of law is an important condition for democracy, the market economy and human rights. Therefore we support reforms in the field of law and justice. This involves legal drafting, application and enforcement of the law as well as ensuring access to the law for all.

Recht und Justiz Law and justice

Decentralisation and sustainable urban development


Local and regional political and administrative systems are able to direct their work towards citizen's needs. We support our partners in establishing strong decentralized political and administrative systems. Apart from providing administrative and basic services for the citizens these systems aim amongst others towards strengthening local economic development.

Dezentralisierung Decentralisation

eGovernance, communication, media

We support our partners in reform and transition processes by integrating political communication and eGovernance in line with demand and conformist to the specific context respectively by strengthen media as an independent authority. Transparency, participation, freedom of information and opinion as well as legitimacy belong to the objectives of our approach. In addition, we promote efficient processes e.g. the service orientation of administrations respectively the optimal resource management with the aid of digital infrastructure.

eGovernance, Kommunikation, Medien eGovernance, communication, media Gouvernance en ligne, communication, médias Gobernanza electrónica, comunicación, medios

Urban and municipal development

For the first time ever, more than half of the world's population live in towns and cities. Therefore we will have to give special attention to urban and municipal development. In our work we tackle its various dimensions: from urban development policy and economic promotion to urban ecology, environmental and climate protection, and from social issues to technical and planning solutions.

Stadt- und Kommunalentwicklung Urban and municipal development

Public finance and administration

Reforming public finance 

The public finance system is of paramount importance for the political management of a country: Fiscal policy directives and the way these are put into practise determine how and to what extent public funds are made available to the state. In cooperation with ministries of finance, parliaments and audit courts we help partner countries reform their public finance system.

Reform öffentlicher Finanzen Public finance

Public Administration

Administrative reforms make a decisive contribution to state modernisation. We support these reform efforts. This involves establishing administrative structures and procedures that promote and secure the rule of law, awareness of responsibility, trustworthiness, performance capability, transparency, and integrity and citizen orientation.

Öffentliche Verwaltung Public administration Öffentliche Verwaltung und Integrität Public administration and integrity

Strengthening good governance in the extractive sector

Today, around three-quarters people affected by poverty live in countries whose economies are dominated by the natural resources sector. This leads to the weakening of state structures and the destruction of the environment, and it can give rise to or exacerbate social conflict. To improve governance in the extractive sector, we offer advisory services along the entire value chain.

Stärkung guter Regierungsführung im Rohstoffsektor Strengthening good governance in the extractive