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Government at a Glance 2015

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Government at a Glance provides readers with a dashboard of key indicators assembled with the goal of contributing to the analysis and international comparison of public sector performance. Indicators on government revenues, expenditures, and employment are provided alongside key output and outcome data in the sectors of education, health and justice. Government at a Glance also includes indicators on key governance and public management issues, such as transparency in governance, regulatory governance, public procurement and the implementation of employment and remuneration reforms since 2009. While measuring government performance has long been recognized as playing an important role in increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of the public administration, following the economic crisis and fiscal tightening in many member countries, good indicators are needed more than ever to help governments make informed decisions regarding tough choices and help restore confidence in government institutions.

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Special feature: Employment reforms in central government since 2008

Employment reforms alter the size and composition of the public sector workforce to ensure alignment with strategic objectives and financial sustainability. Given that a significant percentage of OECD countries’ finances are spent on their employees, employment reforms can have an impact on the overall cost of government. Between 2008 and 2013 many OECD countries undertook numerous employment reforms, often as a result of the 2008 financial crisis, in an attempt to restore financial sustainability while trying to maintain service delivery standards and meet rising demand. Large-scale employment reforms can be difficult to undertake, particularly when they involve high levels of downsizing over short periods of time. Conversely, countries that do not take an active role in controlling the size of their public services risk growing public employment to levels that are fiscally unsustainable.

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