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Strengthening local government budgeting and accountability

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  • Schaeffer, Michael
  • Yilmaz, Serdar
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    Abstract

    In many developing and middle-income countries, decentralization reforms are promoting changes in governance structures that are reshaping the relationship between local governments and citizens. The success of these decentralization reforms depends on the existence of sound public financial systems both at the central and local levels. This paper focuses on the role of budgeting as a critical tool in reform efforts, highlighting problems that might impede successful local government budget development and implementation. The attainment of effective local government accountability and transparency is not an end itself, but rather it represents the means to support better decision-making on national and local budgeting. Community based schemes for enhancing local government accountability need to combine legal, political, and administrative mechanisms with proactive community involvement. Of particular importance are the legal and budgetary instruments that require input from local community members on certain local government decisions and instruments that increase accessibility for the press or the general public at large to information on government activities.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4767.

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    Date of creation: 01 Nov 2008
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    Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4767

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    Related research

    Keywords: National Governance; Public Sector Expenditure Analysis&Management; Debt Markets; Public Sector Corruption&Anticorruption Measures; Public Sector Economics&Finance;

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

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    1. Reinikka, Ritva & Svensson, Jakob, 2004. "The power of information : evidence from a newspaper campaign to reduce capture," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3239, The World Bank.
    2. Tugrul Gurgur & Anwar Shah, 2008. "Localization and corruption: panacea or pandora's box?," CEMA Working Papers 581, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
    3. Fisman, Raymond & Gatti, Roberta, 2002. "Decentralization and corruption: evidence across countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 325-345, March.
    4. Blair, Harry, 2000. "Participation and Accountability at the Periphery: Democratic Local Governance in Six Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 21-39, January.
    5. Keefer, Philip & Khemani, Stuti, 2003. "Democracy, public expenditures, and the poor," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3164, The World Bank.
    6. Pranab Bardhan, 2002. "Decentralization of Governance and Development," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(4), pages 185-205, Fall.
    7. Stuti Khemani, 2006. "Local Government Accountability for Health Service Delivery in Nigeria," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 15(2), pages 285-312, June.
    8. Maria A Albino-War & Raju Jan Singh & Ehtisham Ahmad, 2005. "Subnational Public Financial Management," IMF Working Papers 05/108, International Monetary Fund.
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