The technical quality of ESW and TA influenced their effectiveness.
Close collaboration with clients, from task initiation through the formulation of recommendations, was important for ESW and TA to be effective, whether clients actually produced part of the task or not.
Sustained follow-up after the completion of the tasks, rather than just dissemination, was important for effectiveness.
Whether clients requested the tasks or not did not matter for their effectiveness, although tasks not requested by clients needed to be tailored to client needs and interests to be effective.
There is some evidence that ESW and TA were less effective in countries where government capacity was lower.
Clients in MICs prefer nonlending to lending services, and clients in both MICs and LICs prefer TA to ESW.
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| Reinvigorate the mandate—which underpinned the fiscal 1999 ESW reforms—for country teams to maintain a strong knowledge base on countries and sectors where the Bank is providing or planning to provide funds.|
Ensure ESW tasks in IDA countries are adequately resourced (even if it means fewer ESW).
Ensure substantive task team presence in country offices and include a clear strategy for ESW and TA dissmeniation and follow-up at the concept paper stage.
Recognize and build on client preferences, whether for nonlending versus lending services or for TA versus ESW.
Take the results tracking framework seriously, by incorporating systematic client feedback.
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