OECD Journal on Budgeting

Frequency :
1681-2336 (online)
1608-7143 (print)
Hide / Show Abstract

The OECD journal on public sector budgeting, published three times per year. It draws on the best of the recent work of the OECD Working Party of Senior Budget Officials (SBO), as well as special contributions from finance ministries, and makes it available to a wider community in an accessible format. The journal provides insight on leading-edge institutional arrangements, systems and instruments for the allocation and management of resources in the public sector. Now published as a part of the OECD Journal subscription package.

Also available in: French

Latest Articles Hide / Show all Abstracts

Mark Number Date Article Volume and Issue Click to Access
  10 Sep 2014 Evaluating the capability of the UK Treasury, 1990-2013
Richard Allen

The strength of the United Kingdom’s central finance agency (H.M. Treasury) has been attributed to its broad and powerful influence on policy issues; the high intellectual standards of its staff; the relatively clear division between the "official" treasury and the political level; and the important role played by the permanent secretary as an anchor and point of communication between officials and ministers. To maintain its power the Treasury has to adapt quickly to changing economic and political circumstances, most recently the global financial crisis. It has also engaged in two major reorganisations over the past 20 years, which have resulted in a substantial streamlining of the organisation, a flattening of the management structure, and a casting out of functions regarded as peripheral to its core finance and economic mandate. Some critics, however, have argued that the performance of the Treasury has failed, and that the department needs to be cut back to its traditional role as a budget and finance ministry.

JEL classification: H50, H54, H80, H83.
Keywords: Treasury, finance ministry, central finance agency, public finance, organisation, change management.

Online first Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/evaluating-the-capability-of-the-uk-treasury-1990-2013_budget-13-5jxx2xcvjpth
  • READ
  10 Sep 2014 The impact of cost-containment policies on health expenditure
Rodrigo Moreno-Serra

Many governments have enacted health cost-containment policies in recent years, and many are currently considering further reform alternatives to tackle growing health spending and promote efficiency in the health system, particularly in light of projections regarding future cost pressures in this sector. The focus of this study is to assess the most robust empirical evidence on the public spending effects of health policy alternatives to contain excess cost growth in the system. A stylised theoretical framework of the relationships between potential cost-containment measures, economic incentives and quantities, and health expenditure is suggested. The developed framework provides structural guidance for reviewing the evidence on the cost-containment impacts of various reforms implemented in OECD countries in the last decades. The accumulated evidence indicates that there are various alternative policies in a government’s toolkit that can be combined to achieve better cost control in the health system, provided institutional aspects and policy interactions are carefully considered.

JEL classification: I10, I18, H51.
Keywords: Health financing, cost containment, provider payment, health system reform.

Online first Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/the-impact-of-cost-containment-policies-on-health-expenditure_budget-13-5jxx2wl6lp9p
  • READ
  08 Sep 2014 The Swedish pension system after twenty years
Kent Weaver, Alexander Willén

Elements of the Swedish pension reform enacted in the 1990s have served as a model for reform initiatives in a number of other countries. Sweden’s experience suggests that a Notional Defined Contribution (NDC) pension reform can be sustained in a supportive political environment, but it has not been immune to electoral pressures to prevent visible cuts in pension benefits. Moreover, efforts to lengthen working lives have encountered major barriers both in the way that the state pension system is perceived and in the structure of the occupational pension system. Design of Sweden’s individual account tier has major successes in lowering administrative costs and in providing information across sources of retirement income, but efforts to increase active engagement in selecting retirement savings portfolios have faltered. Sweden has modified its new pension system in several ways over the past decade to address perceived problems and political concerns, and debates are now arising on a "Pension Reform 2.0" package of more comprehensive changes.

JEL classification: H5, H55.
Keywords: Pension reform, pension system, income contribution, retirement, stabilising mechanisms.

Online first Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/the-swedish-pension-system-after-twenty-years_budget-13-5jxx3sx58x9t
  • READ
  27 Aug 2014 Budgeting in Albania
Knut Klepsvik, Richard Emery, Brian Finn, Regina Bernhard

The Republic of Albania is located in south-eastern Europe and has a population of 2.8 million (2011 census). It was established as a unitary parliamentary republic in 1991 after 46 years of Communist rule. This review of the budget process of the Republic of Albania was carried out as part of the work programme of the OECD Working Party of Senior Budget Officials. In preparation for the review, a team for the OECD Secretariat led by Knut Klepsvik undertook a mission to Tirana from 29 October to 2 November 2012. The substance of this review is divided into 4 sections which details the budgeting process in Albania and includes an Annex summarising recent budget reviews that have taken place in the country.

JEL classification: H50, H61, H83, O21, O52
Keywords: Annual budget, budgetary process, budget structure, fiscal policy, fiscal rules, parliamentary budget, procurement.

Volume 13 Issue 2 Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/budgeting-in-albania_budget-13-5jz14bz8n86d
  • READ
  27 Aug 2014 Spending reviews
Marc Robinson

This article focuses on the optimal design of spending review processes. It contents that sending review should be an integral part of the government budget preparation process, in order to support aggregate fiscal discipline and to increase the fiscal space available for essential new spending initiatives. The article discusses the appropriate focus and coverage of spending review, the assignment of roles and responsibilities during the process, and the information base of spending review.

JEL classification: H500, H610.
Keywords: Baseline expenditure, fiscal space, savings options, efficiency reviews, strategic reviews, bottom-up review, joint review, top-down review, comprehensive review, selective review.

Volume 13 Issue 2 Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/spending-reviews_budget-13-5jz14bz8p2hd
  • READ
  27 Aug 2014 The metamorphoses of performance budgeting
Allen Schick

Performance budgeting (PB) emerged more than 60 years ago as a key driver of budgetary innovation in the United States. Due to its often lofty goals, PB initiatives were rarely successful, but have instead reappeared, in different forms and with new labels.
This article focuses on contemporary PB transformations, explains their rationale and objectives, and assesses their prospects in eight sections. Due to the fact that PB defies standardisation and countries differ in their approaches, the versions discussed here do not fit all venues, nor would all observers agree that they are sufficiently distinguishable from one another to warrant distinctive labels. PB, however, has some basic features that cut across all its mutations, though the way they are framed or applied may differ among the various approaches.

JEL classification: H60, H61, H68
Keywords: Budget allocation, budget framework, expenditures, implementation, line items, performance budgeting

Volume 13 Issue 2 Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/the-metamorphoses-of-performance-budgeting_budget-13-5jz2jw9szgs8
  • READ
  27 Aug 2014 Budgeting for fiscal space and government performance beyond the great recession
Mario Marcel

In the course of the prolonged economic crisis that started in 2008, fiscal space has become a scarce commodity in OECD countries. This has not only broadened the appeal of a concept originally raised by emerging countries in the early 2000s, but has also extended its meaning to recognise its intertemporal nature and to highlight its endogenous features. Current projections indicate that fiscal consolidation needs and the effect of demographic change on social security may shrink non-pension fiscal space in OECD countries by some 18% between 2011 and 2030, exceeding current consolidation plans in many countries. The response to these needs should take place increasingly through budgets rather than ad hoc consolidation packages. To this end, the quest for fiscal space needs to be mainstreamed into budgeting by developing appropriate tools and procedures; the effort needs to extend beyond the annual budget process both in timeframe and scope; and many actors need to contribute to this effort in addition to ministries of finance and budget offices. In other words, generating fiscal space at the required scale needs not only a substantial revamping of budget practices, but also revisiting the temporal and institutional framework within which budgeting takes place.

JEL classification: H50, H61, H83
Keywords: Budget practices, budget framework, economic crisis, fiscal space, fiscal consolidation, incrementalist, performance, recession

Volume 13 Issue 2 Click to Access: 
  • PDF
  • http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/governance/budgeting-for-fiscal-space-and-government-performance-beyond-the-great-recession_budget-13-5jz2jw9t0pd3
  • READ
Add to Marked List