The 2013 CAPE Conference on ‘budgeting in the real world’ took place on the 13 and 14 of November in London and was broadcast live online. The conference focussed on the real-life issues facing budget managers, and those who wish to support them, as they develop, execute and report on national expenditure plans. The intention was to move beyond discussions of ‘best practice’ and ‘ideal types’ to explore how budgets actually play out on the ground. This entailed acknowledgement that national budgeting is typically ‘messier’ and more political than is usually assumed, and certainly more so than is presented in some public financial management (PFM) core texts.
This report summarises the key points, main areas of discussion and resulting conclusions from the conference.
Erratum: on 12 March 2014 paragraphs 3 and 4 of page 9 were amended to correct a factual inaccuracy.