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RE-THINKING ACCOUNTABILITY Social Accountability and the Search for More Effective Public Expenditure Jeff Thindwa Participation and Civic Engagement Group,

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Presentation on theme: "RE-THINKING ACCOUNTABILITY Social Accountability and the Search for More Effective Public Expenditure Jeff Thindwa Participation and Civic Engagement Group,"— Presentation transcript:

1 RE-THINKING ACCOUNTABILITY Social Accountability and the Search for More Effective Public Expenditure Jeff Thindwa Participation and Civic Engagement Group, Social Development Department, The World Bank

2 What is Accountability? The obligation of power-holders to account for or take responsibility for their actions. Power-holders are those who hold political, financial or other forms of power. Two key areas of accountability: government accountability (accountability of public officials and employees) and corporate accountability

3 What is Social Accountability? An approach towards building accountability that relies on civic engagement, i.e., in which it is ordinary citizens and/or civil society organizations who participate directly or indirectly in exacting accountability.

4 Social accountability mechanisms refer to the range of methods, tools and choices to ensure greater accounting to citizens for public actions and outcomes. They include: citizen participation in public policy- making, participatory budgeting, public expenditure tracking, citizen monitoring of public service delivery, citizen advisory boards, lobbying and advocacy campaigns They are hence demand-driven, and operate from the bottom up. Also sometimes referred to as external or vertical mechanisms of accountability.

5 Why Social Accountability Is Important Social Accountability Good Governance Development Effectiveness Empowerment

6 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

7 Services do not benefit the poorest Resources not delivering results Increasing resources is not the only solution Need to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of public expenditure …….The Service Delivery Problem?

8 WDR2004 – Making Services Work for Poor People The Thinking of the WDR 2004 Possible Roots of Problem: Governments spend on the wrong goods and people – Budget Allocation Problem Resources fail to reach service providers or users - Expenditure Tracking Problem Weak incentives for effective service delivery - Problem of Monitoring/Accountability Demand-side constraints - Problem of Participation/Awareness

9 Development outcomes: the reality Clients Central Govt Providers Local Govt Benefits …but, there are many weak links in implementation, and much needs to come together to make services work & produce desirable outcomes Leakage of Funds Policies Institutional incentives Primary education Inappropriate spending (e.g. high teacher salaries; Insufficient supply of textbooks Public financing Implementation capacity Information & transparency Institutional incentives Low-quality instruction Capacity & incentives Curriculum & technology Monitoring & evaluation Lack of demand Ability to pay Intra-household behavior Community norms

10 Unbundling Service Delivery – the WDR 2004 Approach Participatory Public Expenditure Management

11 Lack of EXIT options Political Manipulation Threat of Reprisal Information Barriers Low / No Trust in any formal mechanism Why Weak Collective Response?

12 From Coping to Voices by Citizens From Protest to Analysis and Engagement From Ad Hoc Responses to Systematic Action Creating win-win situations How to Make a Change

13 Facilitates the institutionalization of social accountability mechanisms into the decision-making of public institutions and policy, and leads to more sustainable poverty reduction outcomes.

14 Performance Monitoring is what the training this week will focus on. Specifically-Community Based Performance Monitoring Training facilitators to build capacities of local communities to evaluate how public spending on social services and budget reform programs actually perform and impact on the lives of the people, specifically, the poor, in the context of SPA II/PRSP The community score card process is one instrument for helping bringing about such capacity

15 The Four Components of the Community Scorecard Process Input Tracking Scorecard Performance Scorecard Community Scorecard Process Self- Evaluation Scorecard Interface Meeting

16 Community Score Card Methodology Allows for… Tracking of inputs or expenditures (e.g. availability of drugs) Monitoring of the quality of services/projects Generating benchmark performance criteria that can be used in resource allocation and budget decision Comparison of performance across facilities/districts Mechanisms of direct feedback between providers and users Building local capacity Strengthening citizen voice and community empowerment.

17 Summary of Steps in Community Scorecard Process Preparatory Groundwork Community Gathering Input Tracking Scorecard Performance Scorecard Interface Meeting Feedback and Dialogue Reform Accountability TransparencyEmpowerment Efficiency Development Divide into focus groups Information on entitlements/ budgets Develop input indicators Collect evidence on input use Transact Walk Record data Divide into focus groups Develop performance indicators Finalize indicators (5-8 max.) Performance scoring by groups Verify High/Low Scores Record data Self-Evaluation Scorecard


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