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Budgeting Process

This concerns budget practice and process.


Dyer, Kate. (ed.). 2004. A Simple Guide to Working with Finances and Education. Oxfam GB and TEN/MET.

This report is a simple guide explaining how budget systems, processes and outcomes work in the education sector. The report focuses on four aspects of budgeting: introducing budgeting which includes highlighting gaps in delivering prop-poor budgets; budget systems which focuses on the importance of transparency, participation and accountability; budget process which deals with potential problems which could occur internally and externally in the process of budgeting. It also discusses examples of reform, including public expenditure management and poverty reduction strategy; and understanding budget outcomes and budget analysis. The report then guides the reader through steps on how to start on budget work. Other resources and related readings are listed. (Abstract in the eldis websit)

Garzòn, Hernando. (ed.). 2007. Municipal Finance (Training Workbook: Local Government Budgeting – An Overview on Considerations for Africa). Washington, DC, World Bank Institute. (Prepared for the WBI Course Africa Good Governance Program on Radio Waves).

This manual follows a structured and gradual process in approaching municipal budgeting. This volume includes the first part, which refers to the Operational Budget, while the second volume addresses participatory budgeting for development — i.e., the capital budget. In a practical manner, the operational budget starts with the most fundamental questions such as what is the rational for budgeting, and it ends with recommendations on how to use different indicators to measure budget management performance. It also illustrates basic concepts and methods, such as cash- and accrual accounting or budgeting. It describes the advantages and limitations of the three main types of budgeting systems. The manual highlights the multiple benefits of financial reporting from accountability to forecasting, as well as the vital importance of accuracy in financial information. In this regard, it indicates the critical role of internal and external auditing, since without it the actual value of financial reporting to stakeholders would be practically uncertain and meaningless. The manual offers guidance on how to prepare the operational revenue budget and its corresponding expenditure structure. Among many other things, it stresses the importance of differentiating between current and capital accounts. In doing so, it highlights multiple typical issues in both revenue and expenditure budgeting. The manual includes a summary matrix of the main budgetary issues and policy options for both operational and capital budgeting. Among the most critical issues, to be addressed in more detail in the second part, it is worth mentioning the importance that predictability of capital revenue has in being able to plan for local investments. Needless to say, it will be in practice fairly difficult to consider a participatory budget process if local capital revenues are not predictable. Closely related to local capital revenue is the predictability of revenue from fiscal transfers for both operational and capital expenditures, the associated issues related to the proper distinction between recurrent and capital transfers, and the accurate budgeting and accounting of these financial resources. On the expenditure side of the budget it is worth mentioning that the approach that best suits participatory budgeting is program budgeting. Furthermore, the manual offers guidance on how to control operational expenditures, curb overspending and exert financial discipline to maintain a balanced operational budget. In doing so, it guides local financial managers on cash flow management and avoidance of fiscal deficits in operations. The second part of the manual will concentrate on capital budgeting, emphasizing the aspects of a participatory budget process. (Abstract in the publication)

Oxfam GB. 2005. Gender-Responsive Budgeting in Education. Oxford, Oxfam GB. (Education and Gender Equality Series Vol.7).

Gender-responsive budgeting (GRB) is an attempt to ensure that gender-related issues are considered and addressed in all government policies. This paper uses the GRB approach to explain how governments and donors can promote gender equality in education through their financing decisions. The paper uses three categories of GRB to discuss how education budgets in different countries have tried to promote gender equality. These categories are: gender-targeted expenditures: for example, special scholarships for girls; staff-related employment-equity expenditures: for example spending on training for female teachers' career development; and mainstream expenditures, for example spending on compulsory education and the provision of early childhood education. The paper concludes with some recommendations for both governments and NGOs. (Abstract in the eldis website)

Perry, Victoria. 2008. Civil Society Engagement in Education Budgets: A Report Documenting Commonwealth Education Fund Experience. London, Commonwealth Education Fund.

This report documents Commonwealth Education Fund experience, illustrating how civil society can engage in the budget process through budget analysis; tracking disbursement flows through the education system; monitoring expenditure; and lobbying to influence budget allocations to the education sector. This report is primarily intended for groups or individuals that have a new or relatively new interest in education budget work, but may also be of interest to those that have engaged in this work for some time and are interested in Commonwealth Education Fund experience and access to useful resources. The report describes why education budget work is important. It records the range of work supported by the Commonwealth Education Fund and sets this within the international context of budget work. It documents the major achievements and common challenges faced by organisations implementing programmes of budget work and makes recommendations based on the experience of partners supported by the Commonwealth Education Fund. It also provides country profiles, which offer an insight into the experiences of budget work programmes at country level. They document the achievements, activities, challenges and lessons learnt for each of the countries supported by the Commonwealth Education Fund. The final section of the report provides a list of resources – budget expenditure tracking manuals, tools and examples of research on education financing – that were produced with support from the Commonwealth Education Fund. These serve as a useful guide for the reader to investigate budget work and budget issues in more depth. There are also links to organisational websites where further information on budget work may be found. :(Abstract in the eldis website)

Rose, Aidan. 2003. Results-orientated Budget Practice in OECD Countries. London, ODI. (Working Paper 209)

This is a background paper to seven country studies on the practice of results-oriented – or performance-based – public expenditure management in low income developing countries. The studies were commissioned by the Centre for Aid and Public Expenditure at the ODI with a view to comparing and contrasting the experience of countries of broadly similar size and per capita income, and to identifying factors conducive to performance budgeting, the preconditions for its adoption and the benefits that even poor countries can derive from it. This body of research has been undertaken at a time when there is mounting concern, in both developing countries and in donor countries, to achieve visible, tangible and sustainable development ‘results’. The sample of countries whose budgeting and performance management practices have been reviewed consists of Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Ghana, Mali, Tanzania and Uganda. These countries were chosen for their geographical spread, the diversity of their budget and public expenditure management practices, and the fact that they have drawn up one or more interim or final Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers which lay out their priority development objectives and the means they intend to deploy. (Excerpts from ‘Preface’)

Shah, Anwar. (ed.). 2007(a). Budgeting and Budgetary Institutions. Washington, DC, World Bank. (Public Sector Governance and Accountability Series)

Budgeting and budgetary institutions play a critical role in resource allocation, government accountability, and improved fiscal and social outcomes. This volume distills lessons from practices in designing better fiscal institutions, citizen friendly budgets, and open and transparent processes of budget preparation and execution. It also highlights newer concepts of performance budgeting, accrual accounting, activity based costing, and the use of information and communication technology in budgeting. These tools of analysis are supplemented by a review of budgeting in post-conflict countries and two country case studies on the reform of budgeting systems. (Abstract in the World Bank website)

Shah, Anwar. (ed.). 2007(b). Local Budgeting. Washington, DC, World Bank. (Public Sector Governance and Accountability Series)

This book provides a comprehensive treatment of all aspects of local budgeting needed to develop sound fiscal administration such as setting priorities, planning, financial control over inputs, management of operations and accountability to citizens. Topics covered include fiscal administration, forecasting, fiscal discipline, fiscal transparency, integrity of revenue administration, budget formats, and processes including performance budgeting, and capital budgeting. (Abstract in the World Bank website)

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