Photo: The central square of the old town. Brasov. Transylvania. By Ann Stryzhekin/ Shutterstock When U.S. Commodore Matthew Perry arrived in Yokohama in 1854, it was a backwater village in Japan…

Marcel Ionescu-Heroiu, Yuko Okazawa |

We all have regular bills to pay for the ubiquitous services we consume – whether they be for utilities (water, heating, electricity etc.), credit cards, memberships, or car payments.  But, not…

Georgia Harley, Svetozara Petkova |

In 1991, the World Bank Group opened its resident office in Bucharest and this November we will celebrate 25 years of continued presence in Romania. Romania joined the World Bank in 1972, yet it…

Elisabetta Capannelli |

For the first time in history, the number of people living in extreme poverty has fallen below 10%. The world has never been as ambitious about development as it is today. After adopting the…

Sri Mulyani Indrawati |

Eight years on from the start of the global economic crisis, close to one quarter of the European Union’s population remains at risk of poverty or social exclusion. But one group in particular…

Mariam Sherman |

When development practitioners such as ourselves think of poverty, the EU is not what comes to mind first. While it is true that average incomes are higher in Europe than in most regions of the…

Doerte Doemeland, Gabriela Inchauste |

  I first moved to Romania in 1998. It was a very different place back then. Stalls of CDs, clothing, pretzels (“covrigi”), and inexpensive electronic gadgets walled the sidewalks of a street that…

Victor Neagu |

World Bank Country Manager for Romania Elisabetta Capannelli and her daughter,  who was an orphan in Manilla before joining Capannelli's family. Reeling from a long year of work and toil,…

Elisabetta Capannelli |

This week, the Global Food Safety Partnership will hold its third annual meeting in Cape Town, just ahead of the holiday season when food safety issues are not on everyone’s minds. They should be…

Juergen Voegele |

“Maybe in the Middle East … but in our part of the world, there is no gender inequity.” As an Egyptian, I wasn’t surprised to hear such assertions from colleagues when I arrived in the Eastern…

Sammar Essmat |