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Government at a Glance 2009

image of Government at a Glance 2009
The actions and policies of government touch our daily lives in countless ways. Quantifying and measuring government actions can help leaders make better decisions, and can help to hold government accountable to its citizens. 

Government at a Glance is a new, biennial publication of the OECD providing over 30 indicators describing government performance. It compares the political and institutional frameworks of government across OECD countries, as well as government revenues, expenditures and employment. It also includes indicators describing government policies and practices in integrity, e-government and open government, and introduces several composite indexes summarising key aspects of public management practices in human resource management, budgeting and regulatory management. For each figure, the book provides a dynamic link (StatLink) which directs the user to a web page where the corresponding data are available in Excel® format.

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Composite Indexes for HRM, Budget Practices and Regulatory Management

The narrowly defined composite indexes presented in Government at a Glance represent the best way of summarising discrete, qualitative information on key aspects of public management practices, such as the type of HRM system or flexibility in budgeting practices. “Composite indexes are much easier to interpret than trying to find a common trend in many separate indicators” (Nardo et al., 2004). However, their development and use can be controversial. These indexes are easily and often misinterpreted by users due to a lack of transparency as to how they are generated and the resulting difficulty to truly unpack what they are actually measuring.

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