One-size-fits-all policy-making will fail: Khazanah Research Institute

KUALA LUMPUR: Broad inequality in the income of households in different states means that uniform policy-making without a local context will not work, said Khazanah Research Institute (KRI), director of research dr. Suraya Ismail.

KRI & # 39; s report "The State of Households 2018: Different Realities", launched today, showed that there is significant geographical diversity in the household income in Malaysia, with a 20% (T20) household in Kelantan, Perlis or Pahang a comparable income as a bottom can have 40% (B40) household in Kuala Lumpur.

The report noted that between the various states in the country, the degree of urbanization is most associated with income disparities, while within the states the level of education is most closely associated with income disparities.

"This is the big problem when making policy in Malaysia: if you do not shift policy in the context of what the street is experiencing, we will certainly miss the target, such as affordable housing," Suraya said at the launch. of the report.

Therefore, a one-size-fits-all threshold for public policy results will lead to gross generalization and therefore welfare, housing and education policies should take into account threshold differences between states during implementation.

Quote that refers to affordable housing as an example, said Suraya that has one price since the threshold is not right because different states have different income levels. For example, if affordable homes were priced at RM180,000 in Selangor, this would already be considered average or unaffordable for people in Kelantan.

"But somehow this does not resonate in some policy-making, we tend to think that everyone lives in the same reality and has a benchmark or a number and then say that these are affordable housing: social housing. some things that we really need to iron, "she added.

In order to arrive at a well-targeted policy, she said that policymakers need to understand the realities at state or even district level and that all works on policy must be specific to the circumstances in society.

Suraya said that if this can be done, policy makers can come up with appropriate policies that are purposeful and useful.

"Secondly, we continue to think that international benchmarks are great, but we need to understand our baseline." Can we actually do this? Can our supply side, our companies specifically for housing, reduce the cost of building houses so that we are the target of more affordable housing? "she asked.

Suraya said that policy makers should understand both the baseline of households and businesses and understand their abilities. They must have evidence and data to support goals.

"Do not ask questions alone … you have to offer usable solutions that take into account the capabilities of all agencies." You can not simply collapse policy, but you do not see the limitation of the implementation. policy, poor execution & # 39 ;, but I do not agree with that. It is not a good policy because you have not taken into account the limitations of implementation, limitations of institutional strength, & # 39; she said.

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