OECD Journal on Budgeting

The OECD Journal on Budgeting is 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, academics and experts in the field 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.

English French

Spending reviews in Ireland – Learning from experience

This article examines the Irish experience of spending reviews and seeks to identify key lessons that should enhance the effectiveness of this process both in Ireland and in other OECD countries. Since the beginning of the economic and financial crisis, spending reviews have played an important role in Ireland’s efforts to restore expenditure policy to a more sustainable footing. However, the purpose of future reviews will move from improving the deficit position to ensuring all expenditure is considered when Government is making budget decisions. The purpose of spending reviews is to increase the fiscal space available to government for new, high priority, policies. By systematically examining baseline expenditure using available evidence and data, the increasing tendency to focus only on incremental improvements in expenditure can be countered. Spending reviews should be used to further embed the principles of expenditure efficiency and effectiveness into the wider budget process. This can be facilitated through extending the availability of relevant evaluations and performance information and ensuring such evaluations become central to the budgetary process.


Keywords: programme evaluations, spending reviews, performance budgeting, effectiveness., budget reform, performance information, efficiency
JEL: H83: Public Economics / Miscellaneous Issues / Public Administration; Public Sector Accounting and Audits; H60: Public Economics / National Budget, Deficit, and Debt / National Budget, Deficit, and Debt: General; H50: Public Economics / National Government Expenditures and Related Policies / National Government Expenditures and Related Policies: General
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error