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Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

Washington Post Editorial Gets it Wrong on the Volcker Report on Corruption and the World Bank; Financial Times Does Better

A Washington Post editorial today ( A Fight Over Corruption ) says that the new report by former Federal Reserve chairman Paul Volcker on the effectiveness of the World Bank's anti-corruption department, (the Institutional Integrity Department or INT)) "reserved its toughest language for the bank bureaucracy itself." The editorial then quotes from the report:

Poverty Matters Most: A Comment on the Volcker Report

Today the Volcker Commission released a report with a set of recommendations about how the World Bank can strengthen its anti-corruption procedures by reforming its Department of Institutional Integrity. This is an important and timely conversation and the report will no doubt receive a high level of attention. But it is equally important that the Bank does not put corruption ahead of its central task—the alleviation of poverty.

Zoellick Approved As Next World Bank President: What Challenges Ahead?

Yesterday Robert Zoellick was elected by unanimous vote by the Board of the World Bank to become its next president. He now assumes The Hardest Job in the World, as we called it in a 2005 CGD report to the then-incoming president, Paul Wolfowitz. Mr. Zoellick is an avid reader -- and absorbs ideas and issues like a sponge. This bodes well for the Bank and for Bank staff. Informal meetings he has had with officials around the world, activists, and Bank watchers in Washington's leading think tanks indicate Mr.

Two More Challenges for Mr. Wolfowitz

In Tuesday's editorial on "Mr. Wolfowitz and the Bank", The New York Times referred to three issues that need his leadership:

"giv[ing] more of a voice to less wealthy and poor countries;…find[ing] new ways to mobilize private sector financing; [and] addressing global challenges like epidemics, sustainable energy and post-conflict reconstruction."