Government Expenditures on Education, Health, and Infrastructure: A Naive Look at Levels, Outcomes, and Efficiency

27 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Antonio Estache

Antonio Estache

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES)

Marianela Gonzalez

University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

Lourdes Trujillo

Departamento de Analisis Economico Aplicado; University College of London (UCL)

Date Written: May 1, 2007

Abstract

All interested parties seem to agree that it is important to be able to monitor public sector performance at the sectoral level, but most current work based on multi-country databases does not lend itself to country-specific conclusions. This is due to a large extent to major data limitations both on sectoral expenditures and on sectoral outcomes. This paper discusses the related issues and shows what we can do with the current data in spite of the drastic limitations. The main conclusions of the paper are that any efforts to assess country-specific performances in relative terms are likely to be difficult in view of the data problems. A rough sense of performance across sectors can be estimated for groups of countries, allowing some modest benchmarking exercises. These estimates show that low-income countries generally lag significantly behind higher-income countries. Efficiency has improved during the 1990s in energy and education but has not improved significantly in transport.

Keywords: Transport Economics Policy & Planning, Public Sector Expenditure Analysis & Management, Inequality, Economic Theory & Research, Poverty Monitoring & Analysis

Suggested Citation

Estache, Antonio and Gonzalez, Marianela and Trujillo-Castellano, Lourdes, Government Expenditures on Education, Health, and Infrastructure: A Naive Look at Levels, Outcomes, and Efficiency (May 1, 2007). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 4219. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=981827

Antonio Estache (Contact Author)

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES) ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium
32 (0)2 6503838 (Phone)

Marianela Gonzalez

University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

C/Juan de Quesada, No. 30
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas 35017
Spain

Lourdes Trujillo-Castellano

Departamento de Analisis Economico Aplicado ( email )

Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Campus de Tafira
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas 35017
Spain

University College of London (UCL)

Chadwick Building
Gower Street
London, London WC1E 6
United Kingdom

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