About the Authors
Ms. Christiane Sitorus holds a bachelor degree in Business (major in finance) from the Gadjah Mada University and a master’s degree in Commerce (accounting and finance) from the University of New South Wales. Over the 15 years of her tenure with the Audit Board of Republic of Indonesia (BPK), she has been working across and coordinating with various national government organizations. She has been part of BPK team assigned in conducting external audits of the United Nations agencies and international public sector entities. Currently, she is assigned in the department responsible in auditing the Central Government Financial Statement and the performance of the public financial management.
About the Authors
Ms. Dian Pusparini holds a bachelor degree in Accounting from the University of Diponegoro and a master’s degree in Finance from the Satyagama University. She has diverse experiences in conducting numerous audits in the central government and local government entities, as well as State-Owned Enterprises. She is currently assigned as supervisor in the department responsible in auditing the Central Government Financial Statement and the performance of the public financial management. Further, she has professional certifications as Certified State Finance Auditor and Certified Risk Associate.
Evaluating how the Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) can be utilized to promote social transformation and encourage gender equality.b Introduction
Government budgets may appear to be impartial instruments that merely outline government spending and income, which do not seem to be linked to gender concerns. However, in the reality women and marginalized groups in societies often experience economic, social, and political inequalities. The impact of budgets on women has been a subject of concern for a significant period. The Sustainable Development Goals also reaffirmed the commitment of United Nations to strengthen policies and legislation that foster gender equality and women's empowerment. This has offered additional encouragement and endorsement for the societal impact of Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB).
As cited in the paper, according to the United Nations, GRB refers to government planning, programming, and budgeting that helps promote gender equality and women's rights. This involves identifying and incorporating necessary measures to address gender gaps in national and local government policies, plans, and budgets. Starting with the assumption that accounting is not just a tool but plays a more significant and diverse role in shaping and reflecting societies, the paper investigate whether and in what ways GRB can contribute to promoting gender equality.c Research Approach
By conducting thorough examination of GRB developments in countries that have a longer history of involvement in GRB (early adopter of GRB) and relatively stable governmental and civil society institutions, which include: Australia, the UK, Sweden, Spain, Austria, and Belgium. The information about GRB in these countries were obtained from academic and governmental publications, and respective websites. The examination aimed to identify the techniques used by each country to create their own version of gender budgeting, their objectives and approaches, and the budgetary strategies employed, and any challenges faced during implementation. Further, authors gathered extensive evidence from non-governmental organizations, Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) activists, and academics. This evidence assessed the implementation of various budgetary techniques and measures. Various techniques and approaches have been used for analyzing GBR implementation are as followed:
- 1. Policy assessment that takes gender into account
- 2. Gender-disaggregated beneficiary assessment,
- 3. Gender-disaggregated public expenditure incidence analysis,
- 4. Gender-disaggregated tax incidence analysis,
- 5. Gender-disaggregated analysis of the impact of the budget on time use,
- 6. A medium-term economic policy plan that considers gender issues, and
- 7. A budget statement that takes gender into account.
By analyzing how the selected countries implemented Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB), authors were able to identify the fundamental aspects of GRB, its objectives, and principles. This analysis also emphasized the various cultural and political contexts that affect the effectiveness of GRB. Furthermore, this analysis identified how accounting can play a role in incorporating gendered perspectives in budgeting, potentially contributing to promote equalities.d Result
- The lack of clear connections between the implementation of GRB practices, subsequent adjustments to public expenditure, and the accomplishment of objectives to reduce gender inequalities undermines the integration of GRB into the budgeting process.
- The absence of established system of accounting for and reporting on how government spending is allocated towards achieving gender-related objectives.
- While some countries have taken steps towards incorporating gender-related performance indicators, gender impact assessments, and parliamentary control mechanisms in their budgeting processes, there is no comprehensive and systematic process that fully follows gender budgeting through the entire budget cycle.
- Political and fiscal stability are important factors for the success of GRB.
- The evidence suggests that GRB initiatives are more effective when implemented at the subnational level because decentralization empowers the parliament to better oversee the government's actions.
- The clear linkage between the application of GRB practices and actual progress towards gender equality has not been fulfilled in the selected countries (Australia, the UK, Sweden, Spain, Austria, and Belgium) for the purpose of this journal. To attain concrete outcomes, the role of accounting in GRB must be further examined within the broader context of gender studies.
- GRB practices are not fully integrated with the administrative budgeting cycle, and no observable changes to the structure of public budgets. Furthermore, there is inadequate research on the role and effectiveness of gender-based performance indicators in public budgeting, making it challenging to determine the extent to which GRB practices have contributed to gender equality improvements. This lack of evidence has hindered the integration of GRB practices into public budgeting. Moreover, accounting has been absent from discussions on GRB practices in the social sciences and feminist accounting research.
The Government of Indonesia (GOI) has made significant efforts to develop a framework for gender mainstreaming since 2000. The gender Responsive Planning and Budgeting (GRPB) was formally reinforced in 2012 through the National Strategy to Accelerate Gender Mainstreaming through Planning and Budgeting Gender Responsive (PPRG), a collaborative effort that involves the four main agencies responsible for promoting gender mainstreaming, namely the Ministry of National Development Planning (Bappenas), the Ministry of Finance (MOF), the Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection (MOWECP), and the Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA). Further, the GOI continues to encourage national and subnational level government to integrate gender into their planning and budgeting processes by providing policies, regulations, and guidelines for implementing, monitoring and evaluating PPRG. In 2014, the implementation of GRPB had been carried out in 36 line ministries and 34 provinces.
Despite Indonesia's efforts in establishing legal frameworks and implementing GRPB at national and subnational levels, Indonesia still ranks poorly in terms of gender equality, as measured by the Global Gender Gap Index (GGGI). The GGGI takes into account various factors related to gender equality, such as economic participation and opportunities, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment. The index is used to compare the gender-based gaps between men and women across these areas in different countries. According to the World Economic Forum's GGGI, there is a significant level of inequality in Indonesia, as demonstrated by both aggregate index measures and individual indicators. In 2021, Indonesia was ranked 101st out of 156 countries. However, in 2022, Indonesia's ranking improved, as it was ranked 92nd out of 146 countries.
Based on the press release issued by the Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection (MOWECP) in 2021, it was stated that there has been a decrease in the consistent implementation of GRB thematic tagging at the national level in the Indonesian government. This inconsistency may have contributed to the country's poor ranking in the Global Gender Gap Index. However, as stated in the journal, the direct correlation between the implementation of GRB and a significant improvement in gender equality has not been fully realized. Therefore, it is crucial to conduct further analysis and investigation to identify the underlying factors contributing to Indonesia's poor ranking in the Global Gender Gap Index. Additional examinations can help uncover the complex dynamics and challenges that hinder the effective implementation of GRB and the achievement of gender equality in Indonesia.Area for improvement for SAI
To improve the correlation and evaluation of how the implementation of GRB contributes to the achievement of gender equality, SAI may undertake the initiative to conduct a comprehensive audit of the implementation of GRB at the national and subnational levels. The audit should include an assessment of the quality of GRB in selected government agencies to ensure a clear linkage between budget allocation and its intended outcome. This would involve reviewing the national gender equality policies and legal frameworks, and assessing the extent to which GRB principles are incorporated and enforced. Additionally, the audit should examine budgetary allocations and expenditures to determine whether they align with gender equality goals and objectives.
Furthermore, the audit should also assess the extent to which gender-sensitive indicators are used to measure the effectiveness of budget allocations and expenditures in promoting gender equality. It should also examine the capacity of government agencies to implement GRB, including their ability to collect and analyze gender-disaggregated data, engage with stakeholders, and incorporate gender perspectives into policy-making and planning.
Overall, a comprehensive audit would provide a clear understanding of the implementation of GRB and the extent to which it is contributing to the achievement of gender equality in Indonesia. The findings of the audit would enable SAI to make recommendations for improving GRB implementation and promoting greater accountability and transparency in budget planning and implementation.References
Fithriyah. (2017). Indonesia’s Experience: Implementing Gender Responsive Planning and Budgeting. Jurnal Perencanaan Pembangunan: The Indonesian Journal of Development Planning, 1(1), 59-75. https://doi.org/10.36574/jpp.v1i1.9
Kementerian Pemberdayaan Perempuan dan Perlindungan Anak. (2021, July 7). Kemen PPPA Dorong Pengarusutamaan Gender dan Penandaan Anggaran Responsif Gender di Kementerian/Lembaga. Retrieved from https://www.kemenpppa.go.id/index.php/page/read/29/3319/kemen-pppa-dorong-pengarusutamaan-gender-dan-penandaan-anggaran-responsif-gender-di-kementerian-lembaga
Khalifa, R., & Scarparo, S. (2021). Gender Responsive Budgeting: A tool for Gender Equality. Critical Perspective on Accounting. 2021. 79, 102183. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cpa.2020.102183
Stotsky, J., & Anggraini, N. (2022). Improving Gender Budgeting in Indonesia (USAID Economic Growth Support Activity (EGSA) Contract Number: 7200AA18D00010). DevTech Systems, Inc.
World Economic Forum. (2022). Global Gender Gap Report 2022 - Insight Report July 2022. Retrieved from https://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_GGGR_Insight_Report_2022.pdf