Titel: Carry-overs or leftovers
Untertitel: Tackling (wasteful) spend-downs at the central government level

Year-end spend-downs have received a lot of attention in public policy and public administration, and a number of budgeting and accounting reforms have been made to tackle this issue. While carry-overs have been thought to be a remedy, their effect remains empirically under-investigated. This paper applies a mixed-method approach to provide empirical evidence for year-end spending surges, and to analyse the effect of changing carry-over rules in Austria. The authors uncover the reasons behind spend-downs: uncertainty about carry-overs and their use, and the risk of losing unspent appropriations and efficiency savings seem to explain year-end spend-downs. The findings offer support for prior calls in the academic literature to take time and volume limitations into account when designing and implementing carry-over rules. The evidence presented here has important implications for policy-makers and managers.

Using the case of Austria, this paper investigates year-end spend-downs in government, and one of the most common ‘remedies’—carry-overs. Unrestricted carry-overs are likely to jeopardize aggregate fiscal targets, and highly restrictive rules about carry-over can lead to a loss of trust between central government entities and the ministry of finance. Surprisingly, carry-over rules themselves have led to year-end spend-downs. The authors explain the criteria/limitations that policy-makers, treasury officials, and financial directors and managers in central government departments and agencies need to consider when designing and implementing carry-over rules.

Schlagworte: Budgeting and accounting reform, carry-overs, central level, spend-downs, wasteful year-end spending
Publikationstyp: Beitrag in Zeitschrift (Autorenschaft)
Erscheinungsdatum: 22.05.2019 (Print)
Erschienen in: Public Money & Management
Public Money & Management
zur Publikation
 ( Taylor & Francis; )
Titel der Serie: -
Bandnummer: 39
Heftnummer: 6
Erstveröffentlichung: Ja
Version: -
Seite: S. 393 - 400


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ISBN (e-book): -
eISSN: -
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Open Access
  • Online verfügbar (nicht Open Access)
Erscheinungsdatum: 22.05.2019
Homepage: -


Organisation Adresse
Fakultät für Wirtschafts- und Rechtswissenschaften
Institut für Öffentliche Betriebswirtschaftslehre
Universitätsstr. 65-67
A-9020 Klagenfurt
zur Organisation
Universitätsstr. 65-67
AT - A-9020  Klagenfurt


  • 502009 - Finanzwirtschaft
  • 502024 - Öffentliche Wirtschaft
  • 502031 - Public Management
  • 502033 - Rechnungswesen
Forschungscluster Kein Forschungscluster ausgewählt
  • Social Science Citation Index (SSCI)
Informationen zum Zitationsindex: Master Journal List
Peer Reviewed
  • Ja
  • Science to Science (Qualitätsindikator: II)
Klassifikationsraster der zugeordneten Organisationseinheiten:
Arbeitsgruppen Keine Arbeitsgruppe ausgewählt


Organisation Adresse
Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
79085 Freiburg im Breisgau
DE - 79085  Freiburg im Breisgau

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