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Saturday, December 19, 2009

Review: Taking Stock: What do PEFA Assessments Tell Us About PFM Systems Across Countries?

Paolo de Renzio

Overseas Development Institute Working Paper 302 (2009)


Reviewed by Andy Wynne – andywynne@lineone.net

The Public Financial Management (PFM) Performance Measurement Framework, an indicator-based assessment tool developed by the Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability (PEFA) initiative, was launched in 2005 and has been applied so far in over 60 countries. PEFA reports provide detailed accounts of the performance of PFM systems along various dimensions. This paper is based on the results of the 57 PEFA assessments completed as of August 2007. It looks at comparative cross-country PFM performance, overall and across the different budget dimensions defined by the PEFA methodology (out-turns, cross-cutting features, budget cycle), and analyses differences linked to certain country characteristics which might have an influence over PFM system performance, using both bivariate and multivariate analysis. It is based on a numerical conversion of the letter-scores used in the assessments, a methodology which can be considered controversial but which nevertheless yields some interesting results

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