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Performance Budgeting & Measurement for Judicial Systems. World Bank Seminar, Washington D.C. 10-12 January 2005. Independence vs Accountability. Is the tension really necessary?. What is “Performance Budgeting”?.

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performance budgeting measurement for judicial systems

Performance Budgeting & Measurement for Judicial Systems

World Bank Seminar, Washington D.C.

10-12 January 2005

(c) David Webber - Consultant in Public Financial Management

independence vs accountability
Independence vs Accountability

Is the tension really necessary?


“Performance budgeting” is the allocation of resources on the basis of some performance-informed criteria or information (expressed as outputs, results, outcomes, etc.)


Not quite. … Performance measurement may be undertaken for reasons other than (or in addition to) the implementation of a performance budgeting system.

sources of demand for performance measurement
Sources of Demand for Performance Measurement
  • Central budgetary authority (MoF)
  • Justice sector managers
  • Politicians / public / civil society
  • (WB) Reform program impact monitoring
some really big factors
Some REALLY BIG Factors
  • Judicial Institutions (courts, jud. councils, bureaucracy)
  • Judicial Map (regional distribution of courts, budget control, reporting)
  • Courts Management & Administration System
  • Major procedural features (juries, ADRs, lay judges)
  • Central budget structure/process
  • Reform objectives (incl. changes to above)
performance budget typical component structure
Performance Budget:Typical Component Structure

Budget Institution (e.g. Ministry of Justice)

  • Programs
  • Sub-programs
  • Sub, sub-programs (“projects”, cost centres)


  • Budget management categories
  • Expenditure items (by group)
justice sector budgets potential major programs
Justice Sector Budgets: Potential Major “Programs”
  • Justice Policy & Administration
  • Judicial “Services” (our focus)
  • Corrections / Imprisonment
  • Police / Internal Security (?)
program goals
Program “Goals”
  • Set big targets for programs
  • Realistic – i.e. achievable in longer term (by MoJ)
  • Have strong support from staff
  • Remain largely unchanged (unless Govt directs otherwise)

Typical Program Goal for Judicial Services:“To support and improve the public’s access to justice through a fair and efficient judicial system.”

creating sub programs some basic principles
Creating “Sub-Programs” – Some Basic Principles
  • Based primarily on functional concepts
  • Describe long-standing functions (3+ years)
  • Provide good basis for budget (allocation) decisions
  • Provide good basis for measuring performance
  • Helpful for improving management
possible problem areas in designing judicial services sub programs
Possible Problem Areas in Designing Judicial Services “Sub-Programs”
  • Public Defender / Legal Aid – MoJ sub-program?
  • Compensation (transfers) – judicial expenditure?
  • Donor (e.g.WB) Projects – what type of expenditures?
  • Definitions of “Judicial Support Staff” (JSS)
  • Where should courts capital expenditures (e.g. on new courtrooms) go?

Sub-Program Objectives are usually the key basis for institutional accountability(e.g. of MoJ) under Performance Budgeting

  • Are aligned to overall Goal(s)
  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable!
  • Most are achievable in short-medium term (1-3 years)
sub program operation of courts possible objectives
Sub-program: Operation of Courts - Possible “Objectives”
  • To ensure that each (specified) court meets, or exceeds, the relevant annual targets for processing/disposing of cases (civil, criminal, appeals etc.)
  • To ensure that all commercial registrations are processed within 5 days of application.
  • To ensure an increasing level of court user satisfaction
  • To ensure an increasing level of job satisfaction amongst courts staff
refining objectives
Refining Objectives

May need to change over time:

  • More / better information
  • New data
  • New goals or new policies from Govt.
cost centres program judicial services sub program operation of courts
“Cost Centres” Program:Judicial ServicesSub-program: Operation of Courts
  • Supreme Court
  • Appeal Courts
  • Superior/High Courts
  • District Courts (1st instance)
  • Family Court
  • Juvenile Courts
  • Commercial courts etc.
budget management categories program judicial services sub program operation of courts
“Budget Management Categories” Program:Judicial ServicesSub-program: Operation of Courts
  • Criminal cases
  • Civil cases
  • Constitutional (or historical persecution) cases
  • Family Cases
  • Commercial cases
  • Special category tort cases
  • Commercial registrations etc.
performance measurement

Performance Measurement

Supports our program/sub-program plus goal/objectives framework

goal measurement high level outcomes e g access
“Goal” Measurement(High-level Outcomes - e.g “access”)
  • Public opinion surveys
  • International comparisons / league tables

(Should be regularly & publicly reported )

measuring performance two main categories
Measuring Performance: Two Main Categories
  • Basic Output Measures – throughput; work completed
  • Performance Indicators – show impact or results of the sub-program policies and activities

………..Both types of measure are desirable

basic principles for measurement
Output Measures

2-3 for each sub-program

Easy to collect

Provide useful information

Adjustable over time

Performance Indicators

2-3 for each sub-program

Related to goal(s)

Reliable data is possible

May need evaluation expertise

Basic Principles for Measurement
purpose of basic output measures
Purpose of Basic Output Measures
  • Provide MoF, MoJ etc. with useful information on how the budget was actually spent
  • Support adoption of improved budgeting methods and resource allocation decisions for future years
  • Support analysis of trends, give indications of improving efficiency – i.e. delivering more services for same/less cost
judicial sector sub programs some basic output measures
Judicial Sector Sub-Programs: Some Basic Output Measures


  • Numbers of judicial staff (staff hours) on payroll
  • Number of courts operating in country
  • Number of days courts are operating
  • Number of cases received / disposed (by type)
  • Number of companies registered
  • Number of judicial staff trained
  • Number of legal aid hours/days billed
  • Etc.
performance indicators
Performance Indicators
  • Provide MoF, MoJ with useful information on progress towards goals
  • Provide a means for identifying necessary improvements in policies / sub-programs
  • Enable comparisons of performance of institutions – eg. courts in different regions
  • Support analysis of trends and value for money
operation of the courts menu of possible performance indicators
Caseload clearance

On-time case processing

Case backlog

Trial date certainty

Case file reliability and accuracy

Cost per case (by type)

Effective collection (and disbursement) of fines and penalties

Jury representation

Court workforce job satisfaction

Overall court-user satisfaction

QA of court perf. measurement system

Operation of the Courts:Menu of Possible Performance Indicators

Table 1: Slovakia

Numbers of Cases Received by Region

for some Major Case Types - 2003

touchy issue measuring the performance of the judiciary
Touchy Issue: Measuring the Performance of the Judiciary
  • Is this MoJ or Judiciary responsibility, or both?
  • Of interest to MoF? – financial implications?
  • How to separate performance of judge, from quality of law and/or performance of the court?
  • Value of the judiciary “assessment/scoring systems”
some possible judiciary performance measures
Some Possible “Judiciary Performance” Measures
  • Work rate (throughput of cases)
  • Contribution to courts management (hours?)
  • Number decisions overturned on appeal
  • Number of formal complaints from lawyers
  • Number of formal complaints from public
performance measurement responsibilities
Performance Measurement Responsibilities
  • Performance measurement is a key responsibility of all sub-program managers (judicial or otherwise)
  • Specialized Monitoring and Evaluation Unit can play valuable role in design and assessment of performance measures (Bank funding?)
  • Budget Department (MoJ) should ensure work is done well!
pm supports judicial independence via improved budgeting methods
PM Supports Judicial Independence (via Improved Budgeting Methods)

“Historical” (input-based) budgeting method

“Output-based” budgeting method

“Caseload budgeting” methods

“Bulk funding” methods (= increased independence)