22 June 2011

Why there are ODI Fellows

"Sh251 billion [~USD 2.5 billion] mathematical error in the 2011-2012 Kenyan Budget pointed out by Mars Group."
Daily Nation.

Kudos to the Mars Group for actually reading the budget.

I should add that its not just developing countries that need economists/numerate people. I once had to review a report prepared by a British civil society organisation whose careful analysis revealed that as many as half(!) of the British population earn less than median income.

5 comments:

Alanna said...

half! no way! how horrifying!

Matt said...

I spotted an error in the Malawi budget, caused by someone flipping two digits, increasing a budget line by alittle over a hundred thousand pounds. Not as huge a discovery, but it paid the local contribution to my fellowship a couple thousand times over.

Ranil Dissanayake said...

I remember a DfID TA in Malawi spotting a problem in the classification of humanitarian funding, thus preventing Malawi from going off our IMF PRGF programme (we would have had the mistake not been spotted), and losing out on close to $100 million in budget support that was under discussion for freezing if we were off-programme.

That was in my first week in Malawi, and still single most valuable thing that I've ever seen anyone do in Government...

Anonymous said...

Are we now saying ODI fellows are the same as expert TA? Just curious on the definitions here - the headline is a little misleading.

Roving Bandit said...

I'm not sure you need to be an expert, just comfortable with numbers and willing (paid enough?) to spend hours and hours checking details.

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