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.

Just What the Doctor Ordered? A Dose of “Fiscal Realism” in Nigeria

Austin Ndiokwelu and Jason Lakin, International Budget Partnership— Nov 13, 2019

A joint forum with the Nigerian Budget Office of the Federation (BOF) in late October spurred a candid conversation on the challenges of realistic–or credible–budgeting. Here’s what we learned.

SDG Action Begins with Credible Budgets

Adrienne Carter and Guillermo Herrera — Oct 10, 2019

Public budgets are the most powerful tool governments have to direct their resources to meet the needs of their people, are critical to achieving the SDGs. Unfortunately, governments often fail to fully implement their budgets according to plan. IBP and UNICEF co-hosted two panel events in New York during the UN General Assembly to discuss the importance of budget credibility to achieving the SDGs.

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?

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.

Why Reasons are Fundamental in Government Budgets

Jason Lakin, Ph.D., International Budget Partnership— Nov 29, 2018

Modern government budgeting is increasingly expected to be an extended conversation between executives, legislatures, auditors, the public, and other independent institutions. In this conversation, governments cannot simply announce their plans. They have to explain the reasons for the choices they are making. So how can we judge the quality of reasons that governments provide? Our new paper, “Assessing the Quality of Reasons in Government Budget Documents,” proposes five criteria.

Making and Keeping Promises: Why Budget Credibility Matters

by Guillermo Herrera, International Budget Partnership— Jul 31, 2018

Budget credibility describes the ability of governments to accurately and consistently meet their expenditure and revenue targets. Two key issues pertaining to budget credibility warrant greater attention: the impact of budget deviations on citizens and services, and how governments justify budget deviations and are held accountable for them. The International Budget Partnership’s Assessing Budget Credibility project aims to investigate these issues further. In July 2018, IBP and the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit of Mexico, in collaboration with the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, co-hosted a side-event during the 2018 United Nations High Level Political Forum to discuss budget credibility, and its relevance to the Sustainable Development Goals.