Budget Analysis for Advancing Socioeconomic Rights

Tools and methods used for formulating and analysing government budgeting for the progressive realisation of socio-economic rights

A Guide for State and non-State Human Rights Advocates and Researchers

Budget analysis is a key component of SER monitoring. It allows human rights advocates to analyse budgetary decisions made by governments, beginning with enforceable obligations under international and national law. Thus, an SER budget analyst must understand

  1. the key components of a particular SER and how these components find expression in budgets;
  2. the methods and logistics of obtaining and understanding budgets; and
  3. how to connect a budget to the SER under review.

Armed with these skills and numbers, budget analysts can assess governments’ budgetary policies from a human rights basis, bringing to light successes and gaps, and providing viable alternatives to current spending where necessary.

This Guide will provide an overview of each of these aspects of SER monitoring, and how they translate in the South African context, with reference to practical examples used by civil society to monitor the advancement of SER through budget analysis. It is envisioned that the Guide will provide a useful resource for human rights advocates to understand the process of monitoring the progressive realisation of SER using tools of budget analysis. It is also hoped that the Guide will inform renewed and coordinated activism amongst civil society groups and organisations interested in SER monitoring, through the production of evidence-based research required to assist the government to reprioritise the budget in a manner that advances, rather than hinders, the full realisation and enjoyment of SER.

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Author Thandiwe Matthews and Daniel McLaren
Last Updated August 17, 2019, 20:01 (UTC)
Created August 17, 2019, 20:01 (UTC)