Financial Management in Public Sector (Advanced)

Accounting and Auditing

Course Overview

This course focuses on the tools and understanding that public managers in all parts of the public sector require to ensure the successful use of resources to carry out good public policy design, implementation and operation. The objective of the course is to give students a good understanding of the basic elements of public sector financial management.

Course Objectives

  • Explain how public budgeting fits into the macroeconomic framework
  • Apply ideas about accountability to the production of various forms of account for public services and public money
  • Discuss how changes in public management require different forms of public accounting
  • Read a budget and a set of national accounts and explain the differences between budgets and accounts in different jurisdictions
  • Explain costs and different ways of measuring them and how costs are used in budgets
  • Discuss the budget process at national and sub-national levels and the techniques appropriate at different levels
  • Apply budgetary control methods
  • Use financial management to enhance the performance of public organisations.
  • Discuss how public financial management interfaces with politics and political choices.

Course Outline

The Context of Financial Management 

  • Introduction
  • What is a Budget?
  • The Macroeconomic Framework
  • Accountability
  • 'New Public Management' and Financial Management
  • Conclusion

Budget Coverage, Classification and Structure

  • Introduction
  • Coverage of the Budget
  • Classification of the Budget
  • Budget Composition
  • The Line Item System vs Programme Systems


  • Some Definitions of Cost
  • Costing Systems
  • Cost-Volume-Profit Model
  • Absorption or Full Cost Recovery
  • Activity-Based Costing (ABC)
  • Managing Costs
  • Price-Based Costing
  • Relevant Costs

Accounting and Budgeting: National Level

  • Approaches to Public Accounting and Budgeting
  • Cash Accounting vs Accruals Accounting
  • The Macroeconomic, Fiscal framework and the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework
  • The Role of the Ministry of Finance
  • Budget Timetable

Accounting and Budgeting: Sub-National Level

  • Translating the national budget into operational budgets
  • Structure, Performance, Discretion, Block Grants and Contracts
  • Fund Accounting
  • Resource Accounting and Budgeting
  • Which Techniques at Which Stage?
  • Budget Timetable at Sub-National Level
  • Accounting for Services Provided by Third Parties

Budget Execution

  • Introduction: Budgetary Control
  • Controlling Operations
  • Monitoring Budget Execution
  • Taking Action

Budgeting and Performance

  • Introduction: Accruals Accounting and Output and Outcome Budgeting
  • Defining and Measuring Non-Financial Items, Especially Outputs and Outcomes
  • Case Study 1: Output and Outcome Definitions
  • Output and Input Budgets
  • Outcomes and Outputs in Budgets
  • Performance Budgeting

Will Performance Management and Budgeting Ever Be Fully Implemented?

  • National Legislatures and the Budget Process
  • Conclusions on Budgeting and Democracy
  • Is There a Single Best Method of Financial Management?
Study Online


1 Week Face to Face Classes


2 Week Face to Face Classes


Course Features
  • 8 Weeks Online
  • 1-2 Weeks Classes
  • Certified

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