Program Budget Structure in the Health Sector: A Review of Program-Based Budgeting Practices in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

By Jason Lakin, Ph.D., Sally Torbert, and Suad Hasan, Nov 07, 2018

Program-based budgeting is about making budgets more transparent, ensuring that public money is spent on the right priorities, and linking budgets more closely to the purposes of spending. Program structure in program-based budgeting is central to some of the most fundamental questions in public finance reform. This paper, prepared with financial and technical assistance from the World Health Organization, aims to contribute to the global knowledge of program budgeting in low- and middle-income countries through the lens of program structure and its definition and evolution in the health sector.

Program-Based Budgeting in Health in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: A New Dataset

By Jason Lakin, Ph.D. and Suad Hasan, Nov 07, 2018

A persistent challenge for both reformers and budget users in many countries undertaking the transition to program budgeting is learning about practices in other countries. This dataset and technical note, produced as part of research undertaken for a larger World Health Organization project, contains an assessment of budget documents from 30 low- and middle-income countries with some form of program budgeting. A brief technical note describes the data collected and offers a summary of what it tells us, and the dataset contains the full assessment and additional notes.

Defining and Managing Budget Programs in the Health Sector: The Brazilian Experience

By Paolo de Renzio, Nov 07, 2018

This case study looks at how the Brazilian government has approached program budgeting in the health sector and assesses the way in which the government has linked health spending with key policy objectives. Despite Brazil’s extensive history of program budgeting, this paper identifies some important challenges the government needs to address it if wants to provide a clearer picture of how, and for what purpose, health funds are actually spent.

Program Budgeting in the Health Sector in Indonesia

By Ari Nurman, Nov 07, 2018

This case study examines program budgeting in the health sector in Indonesia. The authors examined Indonesian legislation and budget documents, and conducted several interviews with resource persons from relevant institutions to collect information on Indonesia’s implementation of program-based budgeting and all of its accompanying challenges.

Program Budgeting for Health Within Mexico’s Results-Based Budgeting Framework

By Jason Lakin, Ph.D., Nov 07, 2018

Mexico has an elaborate system of “budgeting for results,” of which budget programs are an important part. While program budgeting is not new in Mexico, the last decade has seen efforts to refine and consolidate the number of budget programs, and to enhance the quality and logic of performance indicators and targets. This case study examines Mexico’s approach to program budgeting in the health sector – in particular the advantages and disadvantages of having a large number of programs.

The Philippines: From Performance to Programs in the Health Budget

By Jason Lakin, Ph.D., Nov 07, 2018

The Philippines presents a somewhat unique case of program budgeting. The introduction of programs came after nearly a decade of challenges arising from performance-oriented budget reforms. Program budgeting was introduced in 2015 in part to address the accountability challenges of performance measures at the ministry level, but it was not fully implemented until 2018. Though it is too early draw conclusions about how well program budgeting is working in the Philippines, this case study presents insights we can glean from the process used to set up program structures in the health budget.

State of the Field Review: Fiscal Transparency and Accountability

By Anja Rudiger, International Budget Partnership, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Transparency & Accountability Initiative, Oct 30, 2018

Over the last two decades, intensive field building has supported the emergence of a wealth of civil society initiatives seeking to advance transparency and accountability in public finance at the local, national, and international level. Yet despite this progress, there is a growing sense among practitioners and experts in the field that transparency interventions have not sufficiently translated into accountability gains, or influenced public finance processes in ways that improve people’s lives. This paper presents an analysis of lessons learned and key questions about future work that we hope will assist fiscal transparency and accountability actors in the field, particularly civil society, in thinking critically about future strategies for transforming public finance in ways that improve the lives of poor and marginalized communities.

Rethinking Fiscal Futures: Questions for the Fiscal Transparency and Accountability Field

Assessing the Quality of Reasons in Government Budget Documents

By Jason Lakin, Ph.D., Oct 25, 2018

Reasons that inform public policy must have certain qualities that make them intelligible to others. This paper, part of the International Budget Partnership’s Assessing Budget Credibility project, offers a set of criteria for judging both retrospective and prospective reasons governments give for budget choices and deviations in public budget documents.

Reasons in Government Budget Documents

Kenya: 7 Key Questions About Your County Annual Development Plan

By Mokeira Nyagaka, International Budget Partnership Kenya , Sep 05, 2018

Kenya’s Public Finance Management Act requires counties to develop an Annual Development Plan (ADP), which, along with the County’s 5-year County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP), becomes the basis for the County’s annual budget. This guide explains how to read and use an Annual Development Plan for budget analysis and advocacy.

Kenya: National and County Government Implementation of the Budget in 2016/17

By International Budget Partnership Kenya, Aug 03, 2018

In Kenya, national and county government are required to produce budget implementation reports that provide information on performance on revenue and expenditure. This information can be used to inform decision making for future budgets to improve the revenue collection and impact of government expenditure. This analysis of publicly available budget implementation reports from Kenya’s national and county governments shows that certain key sets of information is missing.