FACTOID # 21: 15% of Army recruits from South Dakota are Native American, which is roughly the same percentage for female Army recruits in the state.
 
 Home   Encyclopedia   Statistics   States A-Z   Flags   Maps   FAQ   About 
   
 
WHAT'S NEW
 

SEARCH ALL

FACTS & STATISTICS    Advanced view

Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 

 

(* = Graphable)

 

 


Encyclopedia > World Bank
The World Bank logo

The World Bank (the Bank) is a part of the World Bank Group (WBG), is a bank that makes loans to developing countries for development programs with the stated goal of reducing poverty. The World Bank differs from the World Bank Group in that the former only comprises the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the International Development Association, while the latter incorporates these entities in addition to three others.[1] Image File history File links Merge-arrow. ... It has been suggested that World Bank be merged into this article or section. ... Image File history File links Unbalanced_scales. ... Shortcut: WP:NPOVD Articles that have been linked to this page are the subject of an NPOV dispute (NPOV stands for Neutral Point Of View; see below). ... Image File history File links World_Bank_Logo. ... Image File history File links World_Bank_Logo. ... It has been suggested that World Bank be merged into this article or section. ... For other uses, see Bank (disambiguation). ... It has been suggested that World Bank be merged into this article or section. ... Logo of the World Bank The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development is one of the five institutions consisting the World Bank Group. ... The International Development Association (IDA) created on September 24, 1960, is the part of the World Bank that helps the world’s poorest countries. ...


The World Bank was formally established on December 27, 1945, following the ratification of the Bretton Woods agreement. The concept was originally conceived in July 1944 at the United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference. Two years later, the Bank issued its first, and largest, loan: $250 million to France for post-war reconstruction; an issue which has remained a primary focus, alongside reconstruction after natural disasters, humanitarian emergencies and post-conflict rehabilitation needs affecting developing and transition economies. Mount Washington Hotel The United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference, commonly known as Bretton Woods conference, was a gathering of 730 delegates from all 45 Allied nations at the Mount Washington Hotel, situated in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to regulate the international monetary and financial order after the conclusion of... Mount Washington Hotel The United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference, commonly known as Bretton Woods conference, was a gathering of 730 delegates from all 45 Allied nations at the Mount Washington Hotel, situated in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to regulate the international monetary and financial order after the conclusion of...

Contents

Activities

The World Bank headquarters in Washington DC
The World Bank headquarters in Washington DC

The World Bank’s activities are focused on the reduction of global poverty, focusing on the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), goals calling for the elimination of poverty and the implementation of sustainable development. The constituent parts of the Bank, the IBRD and the IDA, achieve their aims through the provision of low or no interest loans and grants to countries with little or no access to international credit markets. The Bank is a market based non-profit organization, using its high credit rating to make up for the low interest rate of loans. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (3072 × 2304 pixel, file size: 3. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (3072 × 2304 pixel, file size: 3. ...


The Bank’s mission is to aid developing countries and their inhabitants achieve the MDGs, through the alleviation of poverty, by developing an environment for investment, jobs and sustainable growth, thus promoting economical growth and through investment in and empowerment of the poor to enable them to participate in development. The World Bank sees the four key factors necessary for economic growth and the creation of a business environment as:

  1. Capacity Building – Strengthening governments and educating government officials
  2. Infrastructure creation – implementation of legal and judicial systems for the encouragement of business, the protection of individual and property rights and the honoring of contracts
  3. Development of Financial Systems – the establishment of strong systems capable of supporting endeavors from micro credit to the financing of larger corporate ventures
  4. Combating corruption – Eradicating corruption to ensure optimal effect of actions

The Bank obtains funding for its operations primarily through the IBRD’s sale of AAA-rated bonds in the world’s financial markets. Although this does generate some profit, the majority of the IBRD’s income is generated from lending its own capital. The IDA obtains the majority of its funds from forty donor countries who replenish the bank’s funds every three years, and from loan repayments, which then become available for re-lending.


The Bank offers two basic types of loans; investment loans and development policy loans. The former are made for the support of economic and social development projects, whereas the latter provide quick disbursing finance to support countries’ policy and institutional reforms. Although the IBRD provides loans with a low interest rate (between 0.5 – 1% for a standard Bank loan), the IDA’s loans are interest free. The project proposals of borrowers are evaluated for their economical, financial, social and environmental aspects to ensure that they are viable before any amount of money is distributed.


The Bank also distributes grants for the facilitation of development projects through the encouragement of innovation, cooperation between organizations and the participation of local stakeholders in projects. IDA grants are predominantly used for:

  • Debt burden relief in the most indebted and poverty struck countries
  • Amelioration of sanitation and water supply
  • Support of vaccination and immunization programs for the reduction of communicable diseases such as malaria
  • Combating the HIV/AIDS pandemic
  • Support civil society organizations
  • Creating initiatives for the reduction of greenhouse gases

The Bank not only provides financial support to its member states, but also analytical and advisory services to facilitate the implementation of the lasting economic and social improvements that are needed in many under-developed countries, as well as educating members with the knowledge necessary to resolve their development problems while promoting economic growth.


Leadership

The President of the Bank, currently Robert Zoellick, is responsible for chairing the meetings of the Boards of Directors and for overall management of the Bank. The Executive Directors make up the Board of Directors, usually meeting twice a week to oversee activities such as the approval of loans and guarantees, new policies, the administrative budget, country assistance strategies and borrowing and financing decisions. The Vice Presidents of the Bank are its principal managers, in charge of regions, sectors, networks and functions. There are 24 Vice-Presidents, 3 Senior Vice Presidents and 2 Executive Vice Presidents. Robert B. Zoellick Robert Bruce Zoellick (IPA: ) (born July 25, 1953) is an American politician and (effective July 1, 2007) the eleventh president of the World Bank. ...


Areas of operation

The World Bank is active in the following areas:

  • Agriculture & Rural Development
  • Conflict & Development
  • Development Operations & Activities
  • Economic Policy
  • Education
  • Energy
  • Environment
  • Financial Sector
  • Gender
  • Governance
  • Health, Nutrition & Population
  • Industry
  • Information & Communication Technologies
  • Information, Computing & Telecommunications
  • International Economics & Trade
  • Labor & Social Protections
  • Law & Justice
  • Macroeconomic & Economic Growth
  • Mining
  • Poverty Reduction
  • Poverty
  • Private Sector
  • Public Sector Governance
  • Rural Development
  • Social Development
  • Social Protection
  • Trade
  • Transport
  • Urban Development
  • Water Resources
  • Water Supply & Sanitation

Comprehensive development framework

According to the World Bank, in virtually all successful assistance projects the country itself was the driving factor, thus the Bank strives to help governments lead and implement their own development strategies and thus take a stronger hand in their own future development. Since 1999 the World Bank has followed a set of philosophies known as the Comprehensive Development Framework . These philosophies state that:

  • Development strategies should be comprehensive and shaped by a long-term vision
  • Development goals and strategies should be “owned” by the country, based on local stakeholder participation in shaping them
  • Countries receiving assistance should lead the management and coordination of aid programs through stakeholder partnerships
  • Development performance should be evaluated through measurable results on the ground in order to adjust the strategy to outcomes and a changing world

Poverty reduction strategies

For the poorest developing countries in the world the Bank’s assistance plans are based on Poverty Reduction Strategies; by combining a cross-section of local groups with an extensive analysis of the country’s financial and economical situation the World Bank develops a strategy pertaining uniquely to the country in question. The government then identifies the country’s priorities and targets for the reduction of poverty, and the World Bank aligns its aid efforts correspondingly.


Many academics and popular movements have argued that the World Bank is in fact a key cause of contemporary poverty. A number of intellectuals in developing countries have argued that the World Bank is deeply implicated in contemporary modes of donor and NGO driven imperialism and that its intellectual output functions to blame the poor for their condition.[2]


The Bank supports certain kinds of poor people's organisations such as the Self-Employed Women's Union and Shack/Slum Dwellers International.


Country assistance strategies

As a guideline to the World Bank's operations in any particular country, a Country Assistance Strategy is produced, in cooperation with the local government and any interested stakeholders and may rely on analytical work performed by the Bank or other parties. In the case of low income countries, the Country Assistance Strategy is derived from the country’s Poverty Reduction


Criticism

Some critics of the World Bank believe that the institution was not started in order to reduce poverty but rather to support US business interests, and that the bank has actually increased poverty and been detrimental to the environment, public health, and cultural diversity.[3] Others point out that the World Bank has consistently pushed a neo-liberal agenda, imposing policies on developing countries which have been damaging, destructive and anti-developmental. [4][5] It has also been suggested that the World Bank is an instrument for the promotion of US and 'Western' interests in certain regions of the world and seven South American nations have established a "Bank of the South" in order to minimise US influence in the region.[6] Public health is concerned with threats to the overall health of a community based on population health analysis. ... There is a general consensus among mainstream anthropologists that humans first emerged in Africa about two million years ago. ...


Criticisms of the structure of the World Bank refer to the fact that the President of the Bank is always an American, nominated by the President of the United States. There have been accusations that the decision-making structure is undemocratic, as the US effectively has a veto on all decisions with just over 15% of the shares in the bank; moreover, decisions can only be passed with votes from countries whose shares total more than 85% of the bank's shares.[7]


Members

Main article: List of World Bank members

The World Bank has 185 member countries.[1][8] The members of the World Bank are: Categories: | ...


References

  1. ^ a b FAQs - About the World Bank. From the World Bank official website, Worldbank.org. Retrieved on 2007-10-07.
  2. ^ For arguments with regard to both of these claims see, for instance, David Moore's edited book The World Bank, University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2007
  3. ^ Criticism of World Trade Organization, World Bank and International Monetary Fund - Editorial. The Ecologist. September, 2000. Retrieved on 2007-10-07.
  4. ^ Uvin, P. (2002) On High Moral Ground: The Incorporation of Human Rights by the Development Enterprise. In: PRAXIS The Fletcher Journal of Development Studies, Volume XVII pp1-11. Medford MA: Tufts University. Online at: http://fletcher.tufts.edu/praxis/archives/xvii/Uvin.pdf
  5. ^ Hertz, N. (2004) I.O.U.: The Debt Threat and Why We Must Defuse It. London: Harper Perennial.
  6. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7034939.stm
  7. ^ Monbiot, G. (2004) The Age of Consent. London: Harper Perennial.
  8. ^ Members. From the World Bank website Worldbank.org. The World Bank Group. 2007. Retrieved on 2007-10-07.

Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 280th day of the year (281st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 280th day of the year (281st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 280th day of the year (281st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

See also

World Bank Group It has been suggested that World Bank be merged into this article or section. ...


External links

PRO


ANTI


  Results from FactBites:
 
Africa Action Position Paper: Hazardous to Health (5630 words)
It was U.S. policy during the Reagan Administration in the early 1980s, to expand the role of the World Bank and IMF in managing developing economies (6).
In 2001, approximately 27% of World Bank lending to African countries was for "adjustment." In the World Bank's total loan portfolio, adjustment lending generally accounts for between one-third and one-half (7).
The policies imposed by the World Bank and IMF have fueled the spread of the disease and continue to hinder the response to this health emergency.
NodeWorks - Encyclopedia: World Bank (2111 words)
The World Bank Group is headed by the out-going president (1995–2005) James D. Wolfensohn, who is president of the IBRD as well as the four affiliated institutions and whose second term concludes May 31, 2005.
Though repeatedly relied upon by impoverished governments around the world as a contributor of development finance, the World Bank is often and primarily criticised by opponents of corporate "neo-colonial" globalization.
The World Bank (and its sister organization, the International Monetary Fund) is a closed system; that is, the decision-making processes are shielded from those who, in fact, fund the projects: primarily the taxpayers in the member nations.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

COMMENTARY     


Share your thoughts, questions and commentary here
Your name
Your comments

Want to know more?
Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 


Press Releases |  Feeds | Contact
The Wikipedia article included on this page is licensed under the GFDL.
Images may be subject to relevant owners' copyright.
All other elements are (c) copyright NationMaster.com 2003-5. All Rights Reserved.
Usage implies agreement with terms, 1022, m