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CSO Engagement Key to ‘Democratized Development’

World Bank President Robert Zoellick this week urged civil society to help show how greater engagement on the ground brings about better development outcomes, particularly by improving governance and service.

Zoellick and IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde met with civil society organization (CSO) representatives in a town hall prior to the 2011 Annual Meetings. Some 600 CSOs—the largest number ever-- are participating in this year’s Civil Society Forum—four days of discussions to promote substantive dialogue between civil society representatives and Bank and Fund staff. Topics include climate change and energy, gender, aid dependency, and jobs as well as mechanisms for Bank-civil society engagement. 

Who holds the key to delivering basic services in post-conflict Africa?

Ritva Reinikka's picture

During a visit to Sierra Leone a few months ago, I was struck by the commitment that the government has shown to making changes in delivering basic services—such as education, health, and water—so as to try to reach and benefit poor people. But it was also clear to me that while the government must continue to make improvements in its existing programs, it cannot reach all citizens immediately—and this is true in many low-income countries in Africa, especially those recovering from conflict or civil war.

Leaders offer advice to Arab World in transition

Donna Barne's picture

Experts from three countries that have undergone political and economic transitions had advice September 22 for Arab nations where citizens have taken to the streets demanding voice and participation.

One of the most important lessons: “Develop and nurture a culture of citizenship,” said Corazon Soliman, Philippines Secretary for the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

Artists’ renditions of the ‘Girl Effect’ reinforce gender equality theme

Showcasing the World Bank’s recently launched “Think Equal” campaign, the Nike Foundation yesterday unveiled an unusual visual message of equality and potential of girls at Bank headquarters in Washington, D.C.  Artists from Brazil, Argentina, and Kenya created installations to display at the Bank, including a banner hanging outside the Bank’s main complex and a series of murals inside the atrium.

The art works champion what the foundation calls the Girl Effect movement. “If you invest in a girl you can stop poverty before it starts,” said Nike Foundation President and CEO Maria Eitel.

Zoellick: ‘Darkening outlook’ for developing countries

Donna Barne's picture

Developing countries should take steps now to prepare in the event of global economic turbulence, World Bank President Robert Zoellick said in a press conference on the eve of the World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings.

While Zoellick said he believes a double-dip recession remains unlikely, he said recent economic indicators are eroding his confidence.

Open Forum on Gender Equality: It’s time to invest in girls and women

Donna Barne's picture

Open Forum
Despite progress, the world is still under-investing in gender equality, a panel of experts agreed at the World Bank’s September 21 Open Forum on Getting to Equal.

More girls are in school and women are living longer, but there is also a “mixed story” on gender equality, said World Bank President Robert Zoellick. While there is “huge potential” for more progress, significant changes are needed to achieve it, he said.

Open Forum sur l’égalité des genres : Il est temps d’investir dans la population féminine

Donna Barne's picture

À l’échelle mondiale, malgré des avancées, l’investissement au profit de l’égalité des genres reste insuffisant. C’est ce qu’a reconnu, le 21 septembre, un panel d’experts lors de l’Open Forum – Hommes-femmes : parvenir à l’égalité organisé par la Banque mondiale.


Think Equal: Gender, jobs focus of Bank Annual Meetings

Julia Ross's picture

The 2011 World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings get under way next week with a full slate of discussions, webcasts and seminars planned around two issues critical to sustaining economic growth – gender and jobs.

In a world where women make up the majority of unpaid workers, and only 15% of landowners and one in five lawmakers are women, there’s a lot to talk about.

Development economics thinks big but also gets practical—postcard from Paris

Justin Yifu Lin's picture

ABCDE 2011, Paris. Photo: OECD
Development is about big systemic changes, complex tradeoffs, political choices and how the fruits of growth are channeled for the greater good. It is also about broadening opportunities – a goal that if neglected can result in frustrated citizens and tumult as we have seen in the North Africa and Middle East.

These were some of the many messages I took away from the ABCDE conference just held in Paris.