How Open Is Nigeria’s “Open Treasury”?

Samuel Atiku, Senior Project Officer, SPARK, Nigeria, Chloe Cho, Research Analyst, and Jason Lakin, Senior Research Fellow — Mar 12, 2020

In 2019, the Nigerian government took an important step toward greater fiscal transparency by launching the Open Treasury web portal, promising to create opportunities for greater scrutiny of low budget execution. However, IBP’s analysis shows that several improvements need to be made to make the portal a robust and user-friendly tool to analyze government budget information.

statue of person reading out of a book

What does a ‘culture of storytelling’ mean for nonprofits?

Pam Bailey, IBP Communications— Mar 06, 2020

“We need to tell stories” is a common refrain today in the field of nonprofit and even commercial communications but the word “story,” along with what subjects lend themselves to it and who can tell it, is widely misunderstood.

Is Participatory Democracy Smart?

Jason Lakin, Senior Research Fellow, IBP— Mar 02, 2020

Public participation in civic decision-making is considered desirable, but some argue it can be time intensive and expensive. However, there is compelling evidence that broad public participation can in fact make democratic regimes “smarter” than others and lead to better policy results.

Book review: A new take on macroeconomics

Jason Lakin, Senior Research Fellow, IBP— Feb 14, 2020

This book review explores the elements of a macroeconomic philosophy that emphasizes both building and sustaining demand through equitable fiscal policies.

Sub-national budget credibility: Kenya’s experience

Jason Lakin, Senior Research Fellow, IBP & John Kinuthia, Lead Research Analyst, IBP-Kenya— Jan 27, 2020

Decentralization of budget authority in Kenya has not – yet – led to widespread improvement in budget execution. Since 2014, though, some counties have improved their budget performance. We look at what seems to help and / or hinder their progress.

Into Open Daylight: Lessons on taxation and the state from 18th century France

Jason Lakin, Head of Research, International Budget Partnership— Dec 12, 2019

Taxes, which we too often dismiss as technical and dull, were central to the “improvisation of a nation.” To tax is to define the ambit of the state—its roles, its responsibilities, and the reach and limits of its authority vis-à-vis the citizenry.  

No Taxation Without . . . Notice and Comment

Jason Lakin, Head of Research, International Budget Partnership— Dec 09, 2019

When government agencies provide public reasons, they are legitimating public debate about those choices and signaling a willingness to accept criticism and revisions. This is the essence of democracy.