As the most important economic policy tool available to governments, public budgets can exclude citizens and skew public resources to the powerful, or they can play a leading role in promoting inclusion and redressing inequality. The International Budget Partnership (IBP) was founded over 20 years ago on the premise that meaningful citizen engagement can open budget processes and foster policies that reduce poverty. In 1997, IBP worked with CSOs in approximately eight countries. Since then, the field of civil society budget work has grown exponentially, with organizations from almost every country in the world engaging in efforts to promote open, responsive, and accountable public finance management at the country, regional, and global levels. IBP works in close partnerships with over 150 civil society organizations around the world.
IBP works in collaboration with multiple actors – including civil society, state actors, international institutions, and the private sector – to bring about a world in which empowered citizens participate in open, inclusive budgeting processes to shape policies and practices that promote equity and justice on a sustainable basis.
IBP believes in a world where:
- Citizens claim the right to understand and influence how public money – their money – is raised and spent.
- Public budget decision-making processes include spaces for meaningful public deliberation and engagement, including by poor and marginalized communities most affected by budget decisions.
- The public budget is an expression of societal values aimed at reducing poverty and inequality.