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Fitting by Adjusting: A Field Study of Tanzanian and Ugandan Development Consultants Promoting Institutional Change

Becker, Pia

Journal of Contextual Economics – Schmollers Jahrbuch, Vol. 138 (2018), Iss. 2: pp. 117–141

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Becker, Pia, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.



This paper investigates the role of local development consultants, which are described as cultural interpreters, in promoting institutional reforms in Tanzania and Uganda. The empirical analysis seeks to answer the question how cultural interpreters translate new formal institutions into a specific context. The results show that they adapt their training programs to the specific context in order to ensure successful implementation. Furthermore, they have to consider how the participants of the training perceive the newly introduced institutions. The way in which they communicate with the participants is a central factor to ensure the application of new concepts.

JEL Codes: O22, O17, B59