Posted by Holger van Eden, with support from Sasha Pitrof and Dimitar Vlahov
The PFM Blog is happy to report that 2009 was a good year for the Blog. Readership was up by almost 17.5 percent. With some twelve thousand hits per month, the blog seems to be fulfilling a useful role in informing budget and treasury officials, PFM practitioners, academics and students from around the world, on the ideas, trends, and innovations in the wondrous world of public financial management. It also provides staff of the Fiscal Affairs Department (FAD) of the IMF, and sister institutions, a convenient way to present their technical assistance activities and research efforts, including most recently the new Technical Notes and Manual series.
The best read blog post this year was sent in by Richard Allen who sadly is retiring from the Fund after a long and fruitful career spanning the UK Treasury, OECD-SIGMA, and the World Bank (it seems the Bank has already reigned him back in as a consultant). He will be sorely missed in FAD. The post is vintage Richard Allen: PFM reforms are much more difficult than countries realize, and are embarked on without due regard for “basic” PFM systems being in place. Reforms often fail. They are cumbersome, multidecade efforts. The support from multilateral institutions is usually misguided, overly ambitious, and overburdening of the capacity for change, etc. Somewhat depressing, but mostly true, alas. If you haven’t read it yet, enjoy!