In what’s called ‘the dawn of the evidence-based budget’, the U.S. Office of Management and Budget announced that for the 2014 budget process, agencies must include information about how they plan to evaluate the effectiveness of their programmes, and link disbursements to their evidence. While accountability remains a key component, another essential element will be innovation, which strengthens strategic approaches. Within the last 20 years, of 10 major federal initiatives studied, all but one revealed modest or no impacts, according to New York Times’ David Boorstein (May 2012). As funds are scarce, competition great, and the role of government a topic of hot debate, ‘effectiveness’ will become the key metric to future survival. Public entities will look and talk like private enterprises, documenting inputs and outputs, unit costs, and promise ‘return on investment’ portfolios. Expertise from this front comes largely from think tanks and public policy institutes, many of which are privately funded ‘to facilitate the effectiveness of … (To read the full article, subscribe below)
Fernando Centeno has served as an economic development consultant for a number of years in both government and non-profit sectors. He is a member of the American Planning Association’s Economic Development Division, and is a graduate of Harvard University’s M. Ed. Programme. He lives in San Antonio, Texas.
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