International experience in tax policy design and enforcement

This IGC regional conference, co-hosted with the Zambia Ministry of Finance, was comprised of a number of morning and afternoon sessions focused on international research in tax design and enforcement, presenting a series of research projects completed in the past two years and including panel discussions for researchers and African policymakers to share lessons learned and experiences.

IGC works closely with its partner governments to promote effective tax policies and systems and increase revenue generation. Historically, research and analysis on these important policy issues has been surprising limited due in part to the sensitivity and low availability of data. IGC’s established relationships at the highest levels of government has made it possible to develop strong partnerships with revenue authorities, enabling the IGC to develop collaborative strategies and gain the data access needed to tackle pressing challenges in tax policy and administration. Our work focuses in particular on four areas: tax design, tax enforcement, tax morale, and local taxation.

Guests of honour:
Emmanuel Pamu – Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Government of Zambia
Kingsley Chanda – Commissioner General, Zambia Revenue Authority

You can follow the discussion on social media via #ZambiaTax and the photos from the event are available here.

Blogs: This blog summarises the policy messages and this blog summarises the research findings from the conference.

Featured audio/video



Tax enforcement and development

Keynote speech

Adnan Khan (Research and Policy Director, IGC)

Taxation and development: Evidence from developing countries


International experience in tax enforcement


Denis Mukama (Rwanda Revenue Authority)


Anders Jensen (Harvard University)
Strengthening consumers’ participation in VAT compliance strategies in Rwanda

Justine Knebelmann (Paris School of Economics)

Information, fiscal capacity, and tax enforcement: An experimental evaluation in Uganda


Business taxation


Dennis Chiwele (Country Manager, IGC Zambia)


Sharon Smulders (University of South Africa)

The effect of tax compliance costs on SMEs/entrepreneurs: A South African perspective

Kiflu Molla (Ethiopian Development Research Institute)

Tax evasion in international trade: Evidence from missing imports in Ethiopia

Collaborating on evidence for tax design


Justine Knebelmann (Paris School of Economics)


Milly Nalukwago and Ronald Waiswa (Uganda Revenue Authority)

Taxing high net worth individuals: Lessons from the Uganda Revenue Authority’s experience

Kelvin Mpempamoto, Evaristo Mwale (Zambia Revenue Authority), and Anders Jensen (Harvard)

Reforming personal income taxation in Zambia


Experience in tax design and administration

Sharon Smulders (University of South Africa)


Anders Jensen (Harvard University) and James Dzansi (IGC Ghana)
Building tax capacity: Evidence from technology investments in Ghana

Ross Warwick (Institute of Fiscal Studies)
Preferential VAT rates, cash transfers, and redistribution: Evidence from six LMICs

Ofir Reich (Center for Effective Global Action, UC Berkeley)
Who’s bogus? Machine learning to tackle VAT evasion

Q&A: Using evidence to inform tax administration and reform

Adnan Khan (Research and Policy Director, IGC)


Milly Nalukwago (Assistant Commissioner for Research, Planning and Development, Uganda Revenue Authority)

Charles Addae (Assistant Commissioner for Tax Analysis and Forecasting, Ghana Revenue Authority)

Ezekiel Phiri (Director of Research and Policy, Zambia Revenue Authority)

Denis Mukama (Head of Research, Rwanda Revenue Authority)

Joseph Sirengo (Manager for Research, Knowledge Management and Corporate Planning, Kenya Revenue Authority)