Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

Who Invented Budgeting in the United States?

Irene S. Rubin
Public Administration Review
Vol. 53, No. 5 (Sep. - Oct., 1993), pp. 438-444
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Society for Public Administration
DOI: 10.2307/976344
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/976344
Page Count: 7
  • Download ($25.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Who Invented Budgeting in the United States?
Preview not available

Abstract

Who (in the United States) invented public budgeting? Irene Rubin contends that, although business is often touted as the model for governmental improvements in budgeting and accounting, it turns out that government officials and academics, often working in concert, invented, imported, and modified public budgeting in the United States. They were encouraged, often pushed, by business groups but generally resisted copying business practices, which were not very good at the time. The story of the origins of budgeting in the United States was to some extent intentionally distorted to make business owners look good. The extent to which business was wrongly described as the origin of improved public practices is suggestive of similar efforts today to ascribe good practices to businesses and bad practices to government. It is important to remember, Rubin argues, that in the early part of this century, public officials responded to criticisms about increased expenditures and lack of sufficient financial control by improving their own management. We should take pride in their accomplishments, and in our capacity to correct our own mistakes. We should be wary of assuming that business practices are what the public sector needs.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
438
    438
  • Thumbnail: Page 
439
    439
  • Thumbnail: Page 
440
    440
  • Thumbnail: Page 
441
    441
  • Thumbnail: Page 
442
    442
  • Thumbnail: Page 
443
    443
  • Thumbnail: Page 
444
    444