The World Bank has taken landmark steps to make information accessible to the public and globally promote transparency and accountability, according to the first annual report on the World Bank’s Access to Information (AI) Policy.
During the 2011 World Bank Annual Meetings, we decided to give the highest visibility to the topic of gender equality in connection with the World Development Report 2012.
The report details the need of the world to close the big gender gaps that exist in order to pursue a path of true development for many countries. There is global progress, for example, in education.
But in other metrics, the data on gender equality is appalling:
Worldwide, women make up the majority of unpaid workers. And violence against women is still widespread.
Every day we are reminded that the challenges faced in eradicating poverty are multifaceted and include complex economic, social, political, and cultural dimensions. For this reason, we work with a number of partners and experiment with many technologies to try and leverage the right community with the right skills and tools to address a given challenge.
On Nov. 11, 2011, farmers, business owners, nurses and people from all walks of life and backgrounds took a moment to answer one question: “What does it mean for you to have a job?" Their answers were captured for the One Day on Earth project, which asked citizens around the world to help film 24-hours in the human experience. Forty-eight flip cameras provided by One Day on Earth were sent to our World Bank country offices around the globe.
Remember that video of a band in a Brooklyn metro ride using iPhones as their instruments? Some people said Apple staged it. The company never denied it. Regardless of whether it was genuine or a publicity stunt, the video is so great that it quickly went viral and people ate it up like candy.
World Bank Finances quietly went live on July 13 (read the announcement on the World Bank's open data site) and word has been gradually filtering out over Twitter (primarily), Facebook, and the odd online post. Much of the response so far has been positive, and people seem excited about the fact that the Bank has published, in open data format, so much information about the Bank’s investments, assets it manages on behalf of global funds, and the Bank’s own financial statements. We are also delighted to note that people have begun to take advantage of the interactive tools available on the site and are already slicing and dicing data, visualizing it, and sharing it online. The World Bank Finances mobile app comes out in a few weeks and we hope that other developers will take advantage of the API on the website to build their own apps.
July 1, 2011—The World Bank today marks the one-year anniversary of its Access to Information (AI) policy. The landmark policy increases transparency, accessibility and accountability of the Bank’s operations and programs.
Bank management and external stakeholders agree that implementation has gone well.