Participatory Budgeting Within the Framework of Open Government: Dominican Republic as a Case Study

Participatory Budgeting Within the Framework of Open Government: Dominican Republic as a Case Study

Geovanny Vicente-Romero (Columbia University, USA)
Copyright: © 2022 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-7304-4.ch007
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Abstract

Participatory budgeting is a public policy and management instrument as well as a mechanism to help develop citizen participation and transparency. This chapter examines participatory budgeting from its origins, evolution, and the way in which it has contributed to make management transparent at the local government level, appropriately guiding the use of financial resources while contributing to the fight against corruption. This work demonstrates how the Dominican Republic is implementing participatory budgeting policies and their impact on the administration of local municipalities, quality of life improvements, and citizen participation as a core democratic principle of direct open government. This chapter presents a strong case, based on the example of municipal-level governments in the Dominican Republic, that participatory budgeting at the local level is one of the most important direct democratic instruments of Open Governments after the right to vote to create a solid foundation for good governance at the local level.
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2. Participatory Budget: Concept, Origin, And Evolution

The participatory budget in the Dominican Republic was preceded by a growing interest in reproducing experiences of this management instrument that other countries in the region had already been developing, particularly Brazil, which had carried out this type of activity since 1989, in the cities of Porto Alegre and Belo Horizonte (Souza, 2001). Years later, in the 1990s, in the Dominican Republic, institutions such as the extinct National Council for State Reform (CONARE), an entity embarked on the implementation of processes aimed at democratizing and effective municipal management, had an active participation. Moreover, the launch of the Program to Support the Reform and Modernization of the State (PARME), financed by the European Union, had an impact. It is appropriate to note that this program included a strong element of institutional decentralization, which allowed the creation of foundations to promote the management capacity improvement. Also, in changes produced at the legislative level, that local governments have been able to show during all this time, today there is talk of greater skills and increased resources, largely thanks to these initiatives.

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