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Government at a Glance 2011

image of Government at a Glance 2011

This second edition of Government at a Glance more than doubles the number of available indicators of OECD governments’ performance. The indicators compare the political and institutional frameworks of government across OECD countries as well as government revenues and expenditures, employment, and compensation. They also include indicators describing government policies and practices on integrity, e-government and open government, and introduce several composite indexes summarising key aspects of public management practices in human resources management, budgeting, procurement, and regulatory management. For each figure, the book provides a dynamic link (StatLink) which direct the user to a web page where corresponding data are available in Excel® format. The report also offers two special chapters, on leveraged governance and on the policy implications of fiscal consolidation.

The 58 data sets of member and partner countries in this 2011 edition of Government at a Glance include the first ever international comparison of public sector pay for selected professions and public service occupations, which points to a fairly egalitarian pay structure in the public sector;  estimations of country-specific fiscal consolidation requirements, which have been found to be large in many countries; the level of disclosure of private interests in the three branches of government; and  the implementation gap of Open Government policies to promote transparency, efficiency and trust.

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Final consumption expenditures by government and households

The role of government in providing goods and services varies greatly across OECD countries: some governments assume more of a regulatory role whereas others are more involved in service delivery. On average, governments provide just over a quarter of the goods and services consumed in the economy each year, including those services that the government provides directly via its own staff and indirectly via outside contractors. However, there is much variation amongst OECD countries: in countries such as Mexico, Switzerland, Chile, Turkey and the United States, governments play a smaller role in service delivery. In comparison, in the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Denmark, governments have a more prominent role, which is also reflected in their higher expenditures and revenues as a share of GDP.

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