Tag: World Bank

 

Implications of Ghana’s New Middle-Income Status – Todd Moss

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Ghana’s recent recalculation of its GDP led to an overnight $500 per capita jump, putting in motion unexpectedly rapid graduation from the International Development Association (IDA) and ultimately a new relationship with the World Bank. In this week’s Wonkcast, I speak with Todd Moss, vice president for programs and senior fellow at CGD, about his recent trip to the newly categorized lower-middle income country, the implications of IDA graduation, and a sudden influx of oil wealth.

World Bank Results Initiative: The U.S. Should Support It – But with Independent Verification Please

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For more than two years, the staff of the World Bank have been developing a new lending instrument that would link financing to measurable results within countries. If approved, it would be the third instrument at the World Bank; the two that exist now are “investment loans” under which inputs, not results, are financed; and policy based loans, under which policy changes are financed.

Strong Talk on Tobacco from the World Bank, but …

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… where’s the action?

The World Bank has said all the right things about putting its substantial influence behind sensible programs that generate revenue, cut health costs and save lives. So far, however, it has done little on a simple measure that would cost-effectively achieve all three of these goals: raising tobacco taxes.

A Moveable Feast of Meetings—Owen Barder

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Owen BarderLast week finance ministers and central bankers from around the globe convened in Washington for the annual meetings of the international Monetary Fund and World Bank. While the press and many of the meeting participants focused on the unfolding European financial crisis, below the radar there was plenty of discussion on development issues, including on the legacy of the Seoul Development Consensus and the role of development in the upcoming G-20 Summit in France.

Go On, Hug a Failure

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Back in June, I blogged about a meeting with Dr Maura O’Neill Chief Innovation Officer at USAID, and a very interesting discussion of the importance of learning from failure.  The possibility of a USAID FailFaire –or even Fail Summit— was mooted.  We’re not quite there yet.  And maybe we won’t be until there’s a grand bargain o

How 28 Poor Countries Escaped the Poverty Trap

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This is a joint post with Charles Kenny

Zambia and Ghana are the 27th and 28th countries the World Bank has reclassified as middle-income since the year 2000

Doctors perform cataract surgery at the Lusaka Eye Hospital in Zambia. It's inexpensive and it changes people's lives instantly, so it's a good example of how just a little bit more money can make a huge difference to the world's poorest people. Photograph: Per-Anders Pettersson/Getty Images

Remember the poverty trap? Countries stuck in destitution because of weak institutions put in place by colonial overlords, or because of climates that foster disease, or geographies that limit access to global markets, or simply by the fact that poverty is overwhelmingly self-perpetuating. Apparently the trap can be escaped.

B-Span and a Broader Vision of Public Information from the World Bank

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This is a joint post with Michele de Nevers.

The World Bank’s expanding public information mandate is the focus of Stephanie Strom’s excellent article in Saturday’s New York Times. During Robert Zoellick’s tenure as the Bank’s president, he has promoted free public access to databases that formerly required a paid subscription, such as the World Development Indicators, or were simply unavailable (such as detailed information on the location, design, objectives and performance of Bank projects). We have no doubt that this excellent initiative will be a boon to development analysts and scholars worldwide.

Shortcut to Accountability? A World Bank Call to Try Cash Transfers

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This is a joint post with Stephanie Majerowicz

The World Bank’s Shanta Devarajan and Marcelo Giugale in yesterday’s Guardian Poverty Matters blog write:

Except for Botswana, the track record of Africa's mineral and hydrocarbon exporters is sobering. While Africa's central banks are today better equipped to deal with currency appreciation, and its civil society more alert to environmental hazards, the institutions that control graft are not strong. They must be improved. However, this will take time. Is there a shortcut to better accountability in the management of natural resources? Yes, there is: direct transfers of resource dividends to citizens.

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