Research and Innovation


The Research and Innovation Division is charged with research into future sectoral needs. The Division is responsible for coordinating approaches to the measurement of sectoral performance indicators and communicating sectoral achievements. 

The division is involved in:

  • Proactive research into the future challenges facing the local government sector
  • Identifying opportunities for innovation in the sector
  • Developing evidence-based approaches to research outcomes
  • Developing opportunities for the growth of management capacity within the sector
  • Providing ICT research on technology opportunities that could assist the sector
  • Supporting the sector in developing and implementing best practice and standardisation in business processes 

The local government sector relies on evidence-based data to progress policy and reform initiatives. As part of the reform of local government, the LGMA, on behalf of the CCMA adopts a systematic approach to gathering, collating, assessing and presenting data:

  • The system LGReturns was developed in partnership between the DHPLG and LGMA to support the entry and processing of national data returns.
  • LGReturns facilitates data validation and exchange between government sectors, local authorities and government agencies.
  • It is used for a range of departmental returns including performance management and housing statistics.
  • The system underpins the Data Gathering project of the County and City Management Association (CCMA), DHPLG and LGMA and provides for more efficient data capture, analysis and stronger data governance.

The LGMA works with the National Oversight and Audit Commission (NOAC) to collate and present the Performance Indicators for Local Government. These indicators provide an insight in relation to the delivery of a range of functions by local authorities. In the interest of transparency and accountability, a more succinct infographic of the results was circulated to each local authority.