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Information about Sirker

Published on January 7, 2008

Author: Danior


GENERAL SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY CONCEPTS AND TOOLS :  GENERAL SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY CONCEPTS AND TOOLS Karen Sirker World Bank Institute October 4, 2006 WHAT IS ACCOUNTABILITY?:  WHAT IS ACCOUNTABILITY? The obligation of power-holders to account for or take responsibility for their actions in both their conduct (by obeying the rules and not abuse their power) and their performance (by serving the public interest in an efficient, effective, and fair manner) “Power-holders” are those who hold political, financial or other forms of power Two Key Areas of Traditional Accountability: Government Accountability Corporate Accountability TRADITIONAL MEASURES TO ENFORCE ACCOUNTABILITY:  TRADITIONAL MEASURES TO ENFORCE ACCOUNTABILITY Rules and Regulations administrative procedures, audits Bring in Market Principles privatization or contracting to private sector and NGOs Independent Agencies ombudsman, vigilance commissions, WHAT IS SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY?:  WHAT IS SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY? ‘An approach towards building accountability that relies on civic engagement, i.e., in which ordinary citizens and/or civil society organizations participate directly or indirectly in exacting accountability.’ It can be initiated by government, the private sector or civil society actors Varying degrees of success so far. Most often success depends on Direct Participation of the People SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY MECHANISMS:  SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY MECHANISMS Refer to the range of actions, tools and mechanisms that citizens, communities, civil society organizations, government agencies, private sector and the independent media can use to hold public authorities and other power holders accountable for their decisions, conduct, performance and actions. They include: participatory budgeting, public expenditure tracking, citizen monitoring of public service delivery, citizen advisory boards, social audits, lobbying and advocacy campaigns They are hence demand-driven or bottom up. Also sometimes referred to as “external” or “vertical” mechanisms of accountability. WHY IS SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY IMPORTANT:  WHY IS SOCIAL ACCOUNTABILITY IMPORTANT WHAT HAS GONE WRONG? :  WHAT HAS GONE WRONG? If Good Governance is classified as being participatory, transparent, accountable, effective, compliant with the rule of law, and responsive to the needs of the people, then what has gone wrong? THE GOVERNANCE CRISIS Poor Access to Public Services Inefficiency Indifference, Collusion with Vested Groups Non Responsiveness Rampant Corruption, Extortion by Agents & Middlemen Weak Accountability Loose Systems & Weak Integrity Abuse of discretion THE SERVICE DELIVERY PROBLEM:  Services do not benefit the poorest Resources not delivering results Increasing resources is not the only solution Urgent Need to Improve the Efficiency and Effectiveness of Public Expenditure THE SERVICE DELIVERY PROBLEM POSSIBLE ROOTS OF PROBLEM:  POSSIBLE ROOTS OF PROBLEM Budget Allocation Problem Governments spend on the wrong goods and people Expenditure Tracking Problem Resources fail to reach service providers or users Problem of Monitoring/Accountability Weak incentives for effective service delivery Problem of Participation/Awareness Demand-side constraints HOW TO MAKE A CHANGE?:  From Coping to ‘VOICES’ by Citizens From ‘Shouting’ to ‘Counting’ - quantify voice and feedback From Reaction to Informed Action From Episodic to Organized Action From Confrontational to “Win-Win” situations HOW TO MAKE A CHANGE? Slide11:  PARTICIPATORY PUBLIC EXPENDITURE MANAGEMENT 4 STAGE PROCESS Budget Formulation How public resources are allocated Budget Review Diagnosing the implications of the budget when formed Expenditure Tracking Seeing where the money goes Performance Monitoring Even after the money is spent, see how the output/service is performing Each of these stages can be (and usually are) carried out in a non-participatory manner. That is not PPEM. Slide12:  PARTICIPATORY PUBLIC EXPENDITURE MANAGEMENT Facilitates the institutionalization of social accountability mechanisms in the decision-making of public institutions and policy, and leads to more sustainable poverty reduction outcomes. Slide13:  PARTICIPATORY PUBLIC EXPENDITURE MANAGEMENT PARTICIPATORY APPROACHES INCLUDE: Budget consultations Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys Tax and Expenditure Analysis by CSOs/Think Tanks Public Budget Hearings and Social Audit Community Performance Monitoring of Public Agencies Citizen Report Cards and Community Scorecards Advocacy Campaigns Right to Information Movements and Research Citizen Juries and Monitoring Communities What is Budget Formulation?:  What is Budget Formulation? Participatory Budgeting (PB) is an innovative mechanism which aims to involve citizens in the decision-making process of public budgeting. It creates a channel for citizens to give voice to their priorities and is instrumental in making the allocation of public resources more inclusive and equitable. By promoting public access to revenue and expenditure information, PB effectively increases transparency in fiscal policy and public expenditure management, reducing scope for clientelistic practices, elite capture, and corruption, thereby enhancing the government's credibility and the citizens' trust. PB can also improve service delivery by linking needs identification, investment planning, tax systems and project management. PB goes beyond a simple participatory exercise to being an integrated methodology for promoting social learning, active citizenship and social accountability, opening new ways of direct participation which complements traditional forms of representative governance. Participatory Municipal Budgeting in Porte Alegre, Brazil:  Participatory Municipal Budgeting in Porte Alegre, Brazil Creates regional assemblies and participatory budget councils that participate in allocating resources and monitoring how they are used. Each council is composed of delegates elected from municipal councils, neighborhood associations and local government The councils are responsible for organizing consultation meetings, representing district priorities to the municipal governments and – in collaboration with government representatives – formulating and monitoring local budgets. Budget Formulation in Porte Alegre: The Results:  Budget Formulation in Porte Alegre: The Results Between 1889 and 1996 Number of households with access to water services rose from 80% to 98% Number of children in public schools doubled Tax revenue increased by nearly 50% because greater transparency encouraged payment of taxes Participatory budgeting has helped to balance earnings and expenditures Over 80 Brazilian cities are now following the Porto Alegre model and currently being applied to the state level, covering about 500 municipalities What is Budget Review and Analysis?:  What is Budget Review and Analysis? Conventionally, the budget is wrapped around technical jargon and large numbers, is inaccessible to common people. Independent budget review and analysis is a process where a wide range of stakeholders research, unpack, monitor and disseminate information about public expenditure and investments. Why? To assess whether allocations match the government's announced social commitments. This may involve analyzing the impact and implications of budget allocations, demystifying the technical content of the budget, raising awareness about budget-related issues and undertaking public education campaigns to improve budget literacy. The Approach Although no ready formula exists, in general the key phases of this process are: Demystify: Unpacking and making sense of the budget allows people to contest official figures and policies. Advocacy: Expressing the budget and any proposed alternate budget in lay persons terms allows a wide range of stakeholders to get involved in a dialogue process around the budget (which is usually in the control of a small number of technocrats). Lobbying: Organizing social coalitions and alliances harness the energies of various groups to support budget review and analysis. Participatory Budget Analysis in Gujurat, India – The Case:  Participatory Budget Analysis in Gujurat, India – The Case Government of India promised to allocate money for social program for tribal groups in the Gujurat. On close inspection of the budget, money was not included Participatory Budget Analysis in Gujurat, India: The Results:  Participatory Budget Analysis in Gujurat, India: The Results Allocation and release of funds to priority sectors has improved Numeric discrepancies and other errors (around 600 in the first year) are picked up by members of the legislature. Media has publicized results. There is a better flow of information among ministries. Gujurat model is being replicated in 12 other Indian states. National budget is now analyzed by the People’s Budget Information and Analysis Service (An NGO where budgets of all departments of State as well as Federal Government of India are analyzed, especially in terms of provisions and commitment made towards poor and backward, vis a vis policy priorities of the government.) What is Participatory Public Expenditure Tracking?:  What is Participatory Public Expenditure Tracking? It involves citizen groups tracking how the government actually spends funds, with the aim of identifying leakages and/or bottlenecks in the flow of financial resources or inputs. Typically, these groups employ the actual users or beneficiaries of government services (assisted by Civil Society Organizations) to collect and publicly disseminate data on inputs and expenditures. The Approach This approach often involves the triangulation of information received from disbursement records of finance ministries, accounts submitted by line agencies and information obtained from independent enquiry (using, for example, tools like expenditure tracking surveys or social audits). Information is disseminated through the use of media, publications and public meetings. Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys in Uganda:  Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys in Uganda 1996 public expenditure tracking survey of local governments and primary schools revealed that on 13% of per-student capitation grants made to schools in 1991-95. In 1995, for every dollar spent on nonwage education items by the central government, only about 20 cents reached the schools with local government capturing most of the funds. Poor schools received nothing. Parents and students had no idea about their entitlements to the grants. Disbursements were rarely monitored. Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys in Uganda - The Results:  Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys in Uganda - The Results Primary school enrollment in Uganda rose from 3.6 million students to 6.9 students between 1996 and 2001. Share of funds reaching schools increased from 20% in 1995 to 80% in 2001. Based on survey findings, central government launched a mass information campaign requiring newspapers and radio to publish data on monthly transfers of grants to districts. Primary school and district authorities are required to post notices on all inflows of funds. Schools and parents now have access to information needed to understand and monitor the grant program. What is Performance Monitoring?:  What is Performance Monitoring? This entails citizen groups or communities monitoring and evaluating the implementation and performance of public services or projects, according to indicators they themselves have selected. Performance monitoring also involves elements of public advocacy. The Approach This is achieved through the use of participatory monitoring and evaluation tools (e.g. community scorecards) and, at a more macro-level, though the use of public opinion surveys, citizens' juries or citizens' report cards. The findings of participatory monitoring and evaluation exercises are presented at interface meetings (where users and service providers come together to discuss the evidence and seek solutions) or, as in the case of citizen report cards, are publicly disseminated and presented to government officials to demand accountability and lobby for change. Performance Monitoring- Citizen Report Cards (CRC) in Bangalore, India:  Performance Monitoring- Citizen Report Cards (CRC) in Bangalore, India Motivation for CRC – poor provision of public services (transportation, telephone, electricity, water and waste disposal) in the city and need for consumer feedback. Why poor services, esp. to the poor? Lack of incentive; most are monopolies, outdated legal and regulatory system Methodology: questionnaire design, sampling, execution of survey, data analysis, dissemination, and institutionalization Performance Monitoring with Citizen Report Cards: The Results:  Performance Monitoring with Citizen Report Cards: The Results Formerly apathetic public agencies now listen and react to citizen concerns, improved customer relations Worst-rated agency help public forums, reviewed internal systems for service delivery and introduced reforms to resolve high-priority problems Some public agencies formalized periodic dialogues with household consumer association to redress grievances Public awareness on issues of service quality has substantially increased Report cards have stimulated civil society activism in Bangalore with many more groups engaged in citizen monitoring Report cards have been replicated in other Indian cities and internationally (i.e. Philippines, the Ukraine, Kenya) Assessing Dimensions:  Assessing Dimensions Incentive Structure: Punishment (too heavy on sanctions) or rewards (may not correct bad behavior) or combination of the two. Accountability: rule- or performance based Institutionalization: high or low (ad-hoc or inscribe in law, projects) Involvement: external or internal (participatory beyond consultation) Inclusiveness: elitist or inclusive Branches of government: executive, judicial or legislative Each of these is important for planning and assessing how feasible and sustainable a particular SA mechanism may be for a particular country and institutional context. Success Factors:  Success Factors Political context and culture Access to information Role of the media Civil society capacity State capacity State-society synergy Institutionalization Risks of Social Accountability:  Risks of Social Accountability Lack of enabling environment such as an enabling policy, legal and regulatory framework, a permissive political environment, accessible government, Conducive socio-cultural and economic factors Not be effective remedy if a fiscal straightjacket” is the main cause of inefficiency, corruption, poor service quality, and professional apathy. Not be effective when governments do not have the capacity or financial means to sustain improvements in services, although they are responsive. Lead to elite capture – local authorities are particularly prone to capture by local elites and interests. Increase the social power of those civil society organizations and interests that are better able to participate Can create tensions between citizens and authorities and trigger reprisals by elected officials. Increase the costs of participation Thank you!!!:  Thank you!!!

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