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Legislative Oversight and Budgeting
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In most countries, parliament has the constitutional mandate to both oversee and hold government to account. In light of the increased focus on good governance, academics and legislative strengthening practitioners are re-examining parliament's oversight function with a view to increasing public financial accountability, curbing corruption, and contributing to poverty reduction. This volume brings together research from many different perspectives and many different legislative settings worldwide. As the country case studies in section III demonstrate, the accountability mechanisms or oversight tools available to the legislature vary based on constitutionally defined powers of the legislature, institutional arrangements between the branches of government, divisions of authority between national, regional, and local governments, the degree of legitimacy conferred on the legislature, and the resources available to it. The budget process provides critical opportunities. Section II of this volume is devoted to examining budget oversight from the formulation and approval of the budget, to implementation and the ex post examination of the public accounts. Special attention is also paid to mechanisms to assist parliaments such as Public Accounts Committees and independent parliamentary budget offices. This title will be of interest to parliamentarians and parliamentary staff, legislative strengthening practitioners, and students of legislative development.
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