Publication type: Conference other
Type of review: Peer review (abstract)
Title: Reporting on the long-term fiscal sustainability of public finances at the subnational level in Switzerland
Authors: Bergmann, Andreas
Rauskala, Iris
Fuhrimann, Sandra
Braun, Robin
Conference details: EGPA XII PSG Workshop: New Challenges for Public Sector Accounting, Lisbon, Portugal, 8-9 May 2014
Issue Date: 2014
Language: English
Subjects: Public finance; Financial accounting; Long-term perspective; Sustainability; Swiss Canton
Subject (DDC): 332: Financial economics
350: Public administration
Abstract: In the private sector, the topic of sustainability has received wide attention since the early 2000s. In response to the recent financial and debt crisis, governments are also increasingly focusing on solid, comparable and transparent financial accounting and reporting. In addition, future-oriented perspectives of sustainable public finances are gaining attention, too. Yet, while long-term projections have become popular at the national level, they have been less relevant at subnational levels (states, cantons, regions). The paper therefore discusses if and how long-term projections can be beneficial at the subnational level. Referring to indicators and concepts of measurement of public finances’ sustainability found in literature, IPSASB’s RPG 1 and within Swiss policies on the national and subnational level and based on an analysis of demographic trends and the development of public expenditure in Swiss Cantons, the paper establishes five hypotheses on the feasibility and possible benefit of the public sustainability reporting concept for the (Swiss) subnational level. The authors conclude that existing accounting and financial systems of the Swiss Cantons, generally, give a strong basis for long-term oriented financial prognoses. Since the Swiss Cantons are especially confronted with rising expenditures for health and social security, reporting on the long-term fiscal sustainability of public finances will allow them to better counter these negative trends. Such reporting not only allows the Cantons for identifying possible future problems but also for communicating them to various stakeholders in a transparent way.
Fulltext version: Published version
License (according to publishing contract): Licence according to publishing contract
Departement: School of Management and Law
Organisational Unit: Institute of Public Management (IVM)
Appears in collections:Publikationen School of Management and Law

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