Government audits to reduce fund leakage in jobs program

Location: Bihar, India

Client: Government of Bihar (Rural Development Department)

Sectors: Governance, Labor

IDinsight service: Diagnostic study, policy design support

PartnersIGC

RDD-DSC_0219

Villagers dig and transport dirt to prevent seasonal flooding of a school in Nalanda District, Bihar

Background
The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) guarantees 100 days per year of unskilled manual labor at a minimum wage to any rural household that requests work, and is the largest pay-for-work program in the world: last year, it provided 2.2 billion person-days of work to 50 million households.

Intervention
MGNREGA Divas is a special initiative in Bihar in which district administrations send independent teams to 10-20 villages every Wednesday to audit MGNREGA implementation. The audit reports are used to recover funds that have been fraudulently spent, and more broadly are helpful indicators for administrators about the quality of MGNREGA implementation in their district.

IDinsight service
The Government of Bihar’s Rural Development Department (RDD) requested IGC, IDinsight’s partner for this evaluation, to conduct a rapid evaluation of MGNREGA Divas. IDinsight and IGC are measuring implementation quality using quantitative and qualitative methods, and will report findings to RDD leadership with a focus on identifying specific interventions to improve MGNREGA Divas.