Exploring the effectiveness of social control mechanisms in fostering citizen involvement in rural local budgeting: The Kazakhstani perspective

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The purpose of this study is to explore the involvement of citizens in the administration of local budgets, which significantly contribute to the financial and economic independence of rural areas. The study presents the findings of a sociological research conducted in the Turkestan region, Kazakhstan. The survey included 259 rural residents from 14 rural districts and two significant cities in the region, all aged 18 and above and permanent residents of these areas.
The analysis is based on the survey results, focusing on the overall level of citizens’ engagement in decision-making regarding local budget formation and distribution in rural areas. The study reveals a low level of citizen participation in managing the local budget. While general meetings and local gatherings serve as primary avenues for citizen involvement, only 79.9% of respondents reported participating in budget discussions, with only 20.1% of their opinions considered during budget allocation.
Finally, the study identifies several factors that negatively affect effective citizen participation in local budget management. These factors include a lack of timely awareness and information about upcoming planning and budget meetings (56.4%), insufficient transparency in the actions of local executive leaders (Akims) (14.3%), bureaucratic complexity and a formal approach to budget discussions (3.5%), and low levels of citizen trust in rural district Akims (5.4%).

Acknowledgment
This study is funded by the Science Committee of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Republic of Kazakhstan (BR18574203).

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    • Figure 1. Reasons why citizens did not participate in meetings and gatherings of the local community (%)
    • Figure 2. Satisfaction of the population with the degree of participation in the discussion on the village budget (in %)
    • Figure 3. Factors affecting the effectiveness of local budget management (in %)
    • Figure 4. Forms of citizen interaction with local government bodies (%)
    • Figure 5. Forms for evaluating the effectiveness of budget execution (%)
    • Table 1. Structure of rural budgets of Turkestan region (tenge, in millions)
    • Table 2. Socio-demographic characteristics of respondents
    • Conceptualization
      Rymkul Ismailova, Aigul Kalymbetova
    • Formal Analysis
      Rymkul Ismailova, Aigul Kalymbetova, Zulfiya Torebekova, Yerlan Bokayev, Aliya Aitkozhina
    • Methodology
      Rymkul Ismailova, Aigul Kalymbetova, Zulfiya Torebekova
    • Supervision
      Rymkul Ismailova
    • Writing – original draft
      Rymkul Ismailova, Aigul Kalymbetova
    • Data curation
      Aigul Kalymbetova
    • Validation
      Aigul Kalymbetova, Aliya Aitkozhina
    • Investigation
      Zulfiya Torebekova, Yerlan Bokayev, Aliya Aitkozhina
    • Writing – review & editing
      Zulfiya Torebekova, Yerlan Bokayev, Aliya Aitkozhina
    • Project administration
      Yerlan Bokayev
    • Visualization
      Aliya Aitkozhina