The Five (5) Development Themes

In addition to operating as effective partners of the national government in local communities, Local Government Units (LGUs) are also the representatives of their constituents. Through the enactment of the Philippine Local Government Code (LGC) of 1991, local governments are equipped with the power and resources to fulfill the role of working towards the development of their respective communities and the achievement of self-reliance. To facilitate this, the LGC mandates the LGUs to create a Comprehensive Development Plan (CDP). Developed by the Local Development Council, the CDP is a multi-year plan that directs the government’s efforts, as well as serve as their basis for the local Executive-Legislative Agenda—paving the way for LGUs to serve their communities better.

There are five (5) identified development sectors to be considered in the formulation of the CDP:


This development theme covers issues and concerns catering to and towards improving the state of well being of the local population, and enhancing the local government's delivery of social services such as health, education, welfare, housing, among others. This theme also covers policies promoting and safeguarding equity, social justice, and gender-sensitivity.


Economic development intends to foster favorable climate augmenting local wealth, generating jobs, employment, and other economic opportunities in order to enrich the local economy and assure that constituents have secured access to supply of goods, services, jobs, and household income. Policies on supporting agriculture and other food production endeavors, and promoting local tourism are some examples under this development theme. 

Infrastructure / Physical

Infrastructure and Physical Development Plans cover policies in relation to building infrastructure, plans for land-acquisition, easement of public facilities, opening up new settlement areas or development of new growth centers, among others. Ultimately, these policies can be studied to determine how leaders are able maintain balance with other development concerns such as social equity and environmental protection. 


Institutional development focuses on building and augmenting the capability and faculties of the local government and the elected officials to plan for and manage development efforts. This may include manpower development, fiscal management, and program/project management. Furthermore, policies under this development objective also promote genuine participation and involvement of voluntary groups or civil society organizations in the preparation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of programs and activities.


The Environmental Management theme concerns mitigating, preventing, and/or responding to environmental implications of development actions. This may include preserving the cleanliness of air, water, and land resources, and rehabilitating the quality, usability, and sustainability of natural resources. Policies on environmental management can likewise focus on minimizing the exposure and vulnerability of residents to hazards and disasters. 
The recognition of the five (5) development areas ensures multi-sectoral coverage, as well as the participation of elected and non-elected government officials, and the non-government sector, in the making and implementation of a common vision for the community.

The Continuing Legacies: Legislating Good Governance in Local Communities online policy compendium acknowledges the crucial role of participatory planning in the protection of the common good and promotion of general welfare. Much like then Mayor Jesse’s vision, safeguarding and strengthening people’s participation and citizen engagement is both a facet and an objective of good local governance. 

NOTE: The online policy compendium defines local development as multidimensional and interwoven. This connotes that certain policies/ordinances in the compendium may encompass more than one (1) development theme.

Serote, E. (2008). Rationalizing the Local Planning System (1st ed.). Quezon City: Department of the Interior and Local Government-Bureau of Local Government Development. Retrieved from DILG-Reports-2011712-ea7ba5859e.pdf

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