Fiscal Futures: Overcoming Hurdles to Citizen Activism for Fiscal Governance

By Shaazka Beyerle and Davin O’Regan, United States Institute of Peace— Apr 17, 2019

Social movements deploying various nonviolent tactics have consistently demonstrated the ability to achieve genuine – sometimes transformative – shifts in policy and government performance. The underlying dynamic involves grassroots organizing to amplify citizen voices and wield power. But can such bottom-up citizen initiatives be fostered to advance fiscal governance?

Fiscal Futures: When the People Demand Transparency for Accountability

by Nikhil Dey, Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan— Apr 10, 2019

There has been growing skepticism about the impact of transparency initiatives on fiscal accountability issues. India provides an outstanding example of how social movements have creatively and effectively used the People’s Right to Information to enforce a form of fiscal accountability that demonstrably connects allocations, expenditure, and policy with people and their priorities. How did this transformative process get initiated, and what lessons does it have for the future, and for its use in other parts of the globe?

Sharing Insights on Strategy and Learning for Fiscal Justice

By Brendan Halloran and Suvarna Hulawale, International Budget Partnership; Caroline Laroche, Natural Resource Governance Institute; and Chris Stalker, Oxfam America— Apr 09, 2019

Ensuring that organizations have in place frameworks, practices, and a culture conducive to adaptive learning and management is essential to navigating complex and challenging fiscal governance systems. Oxfam America, the Natural Resource Governance Institute, and the International Budget Partnership engaged in a series of learning exchanges to share insights and lessons from their respective Planning, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (PMEL) systems and practices to learn from each other’s experiences.

An aerial view of a neighborhood affected by Cyclone Idai on March 24, 2019 in Beira, Mozambique.

Fiscal Futures: Fighting Climate Change with Fiscal Policy

By Delaine McCullough, Head of Climate Finance Accountability, International Budget Partnership — Apr 03, 2019

Climate change threatens the natural systems that our lives and economies depend on, so it is simultaneously an environmental, economic, and developmental issue. But it is also an equity issue. If you’re poor, female, or otherwise marginalized, the risk of losing your already limited assets, livelihood, and potentially your life is heightened by climate change. Failure to address this extra vulnerability as we tackle climate change will deepen existing poverty and inequality.

It’s the Oil…or Is It? The Drivers of Poor Budget Credibility in Nigeria

by Jason Lakin and Samuel Atiku— Mar 28, 2019

Many governments around the world struggle to implement their budgets, including Nigeria: the country’s federal budget was underspent every year between 2009 and 2016, with the share of underspending as high as 27 percent in 2016. Many people would be inclined to agree that volatile oil resources are at the heart of Nigeria’s broader political and economic challenges – and specifically, its failure to spend its budget. But is this right?

Cape Town South Africa Informal Settlement

Fiscal Futures: Is There a Space for Better Fiscal Accountability in South Africa’s Metropolitan Municipalities?

By Adi Kumar and Ryan Fester, Development Action Group— Mar 27, 2019

In South Africa’s metropolitan municipalities, civil society has limited influence over local government decision making, and most tactics to hold local governments accountable are failing. Can the emergence of cross-class and cross-race coalitions frame new forms of citizen participation and improve fiscal accountability?

Civil Society Groups Across Latin America are Starting to Question Tax Expenditures

By Paolo de Renzio and Alexandre Ciconello, International Budget Partnership — Mar 21, 2019

The International Budget Partnership has been working with a group of nine Latin American civil society organizations to promote research, advocacy, and learning around tax expenditures in the Latin American region. Recently, each group conducted research to examine how governments were using tax expenditures in their countries and to assess the impact of tax expenditures on inequality. Read more about how these groups are using their research findings to promote advocacy campaigns.

Budget Credibility: Is the Government Doing What It’s Saying and Saying What It’s Doing?

Jason Lakin, International Budget Partnership— Mar 07, 2019

When the International Budget Partnership put out an open call for 25 civil society organizations to research budget credibility issues in their countries last year, we thought we would struggle to reach that number. But more than 70 groups applied, and their research was just one component of our larger Assessing Budget Credibility project, which looks at the degree to which governments raise and spend public money in accordance with approved budgets, and the causes and consequences of any deviations.