OECD Working Papers on Fiscal Federalism

This series covers issues related to intergovernmental fiscal relations and local/regional public finance, such as: tax and spending assignment across government levels; intergovernmental grants; fiscal equalization; local and regional public service efficiency; inter-jurisdictional tax competition; and macroeconomic issues such as intergovernmental fiscal management and sub-central fiscal rules. Many of these working papers are outputs of the OECD Network on Fiscal Relations Across Levels of Government. Related working papers on fiscal federalism issues are also published in other OECD working paper series on tax policy, economics, public governance and regional development. An integrated list of key papers produced by the Fiscal Network can be found at http://oe.cd/fiscalnetwork.

(Note: numbers 1, 6 and 8 are available in the OECD Economics Department Working Papers, as numbers 465, 626 and 705.)


Improving the Performance of Sub-national Governments through Benchmarking and Performance Reporting

Performance systems are one tool available to central governments to improve the performance of sub-national service delivery. This paper provides a preliminary review of suitable metrics and mechanisms to reliably measure and monitor the efficiency and quality of public services that are provided by sub-national governments. This review aims to conceptualise the challenges associated with measuring public sector inputs, outputs and outcomes and implementing effective performance systems. Robust performance systems aim to measure both the efficiency and effectiveness of public services, as well measure cost efficiency, to better understand and remedy cost discrepancies across regions. Implementing qualitative mechanisms such as external inspections and user surveys are also useful in providing insights into consumer experience and well-being.


Keywords: sub-national government performance, benchmarking systems, public sector productivity
JEL: O43: Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth / Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity / Institutions and Growth; H77: Public Economics / State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations / Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism; Secession; H44: Public Economics / Publicly Provided Goods / Publicly Provided Goods: Mixed Markets
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