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Public Sector Financial Management

We research, lecture and provide consulting services in the field of public financial management and, in doing so, are committed to the active transfer of knowledge into practice. Our mission is to seek innovative and academically profound solutions to current challenges in the financial management of government, administrative, and not-for-profit organizations with the aim of increasing efficiency, effectiveness, and transparency in dealing with public finances and donations.

Our Latest Activities

Strategic Partnership with SECO Renewed

We will remain the strategic partner of the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) in the areas of public financial management and public-sector audit from 2017 to 2022. We support SECO by providing technical development assistance with a focus on partner countries such as Albania, Serbia, Vietnam, Colombia, and South Africa. Our mandate is to support the reform activities in these countries and to ensure that the reforms are implemented efficiently, effectively, and economically.


Keynote Speech at 2018 BDO Council Meeting

Dr. Sandro Fuchs, Head of the Center for Public Financial Management at ZHAW, gave a keynote speech on the topic of "public financial resilience" on the occasion of the 2018 BDO municipality conference, which took place on 24 January at KKL Lucerne. He explained what savings and consolidation approaches are currently being applied at the level of Swiss municipalities and cantons. As Sandro Fuchs pointed out, a change of perspective is needed in order to develop long-term financial resilience. 


Development of a Framework to Measure the Impact of Caritas Switzerland

We are pleased to be able to develop and implement a new framework for Caritas Switzerland to measure the global impact of its project activities. An academically sound Impact evaluation model is a key success factor in the global competition for donations and project activities. The project manager is Dr. Oriana Ponta, who has many years of experience in the field of impact evaluations, having worked for well-known organizations such as JPAL or the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Our Research and Expertise

In our research, we examine ways to increase the efficiency, effectiveness, and transparency of the financial management of governments, administrations, and not-for-profit organizations. The focus is on their practical needs and how to meet them by means of academically based approaches and concepts. Research areas include, in particular:

  • Modernization of public accounting through HRM2 and IPSAS;
  • Alternative financing models in the public sector such as public-private partnerships;
  • Effects of digitalization on public financial management;
  • Sustainable financial management through the development of a fiscal stress test;
  • Evaluation of financing decisions by NPOs; 
  • Financial governance and planning systems such as budgeting and medium-term planning. 

Our References

Over the past 10 years, we have supported more than 50 government, administrative, and not-for-profit organizations in more than 20 countries in increasing their efficiency, effectiveness, and transparency in dealing with public finances and donations. Examples of our projects include:

  • IPSAS implementation in various latin-american, central-asian and east-european countries
  • Development and implementation of an integrated financial reporting system for the Federal Postal and Telecommunications Surveillance Service ("ÜPF");
  • Development and implementation of an Impact evaluation Framework for Caritas Switzerland;
  • Support of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the implementation of an effective and transparent public financial management system on behalf of the International Monetary Fund (IMF);
  • Establishment and development of a diagnostic tool used by the World Bank to identify and evaluate public financial management practices.
  • Establishment of internal control systems and risk management systems in various Swiss municipalities and cantons

Our broad national and international network of research partners and our independent research on innovative concepts and solutions help us in providing practical and scientifically grounded solutions that correspond to the latest state of knowledge.

Our Partners

We have a broad national and international network of reliable and experienced partners in the field of public financial management and development cooperation. In particular, we maintain strategic partnerships with:

  • The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) in public financial management (2018 to 2022);
  • The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) in the training and further education of public sector accountants;
  • The World Bank within the framework of the Public Sector Accounting and Reporting Strengthening Initiative (PULSAR) in Europe and Central Asia;
  • Caritas Switzerland in the development and implementation of an Impact Evaluation model