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Civil Society Engagement eNewsletter - April 2010

1. 2010 Spring Meetings Set to Debate Bank Reforms, Energy, and Education
2. Zoellick Spring Meetings Speech: “The End of the Third World?”
3. World Bank’s Financing for Recovery Hits a Record $100 Billion
4. Historic Multilateral Anti-Corruption Cross-Debarment Agreement Reached
5. Bank Approves Eskom Electric Energy Project in South Africa
6. Climate Investment Funds to Mobilize $40 Billion for Low Carbon Growth
7. Bank Launches Financial Resources Website
8. Maximizing Transparency in the Extractive Industries
9. World Bank Alerts European Governments of Steep Economic Costs from Roma Exclusion
10. Feedback Sought on Bank’s Main Website – Give your Views
11. Cities Get Common Standard for Measuring Greenhouse Gas Emissions
12. Africans Living Outside the Continent Can Make a Development Difference Back Home 

REGIONAL NEWS AND PROJECTS
JOBS
EVENTS
ON THE BLOGS
PUBLICATIONS / PODCASTS 

1. 2010 Spring Meetings Set to Debate Bank Reforms, Energy, and Education
The 2010 World Bank and International Monetary Fund Spring Meetings will be held on April 24 and 25 in Washington, DC. The Civil Society Policy Forum, a program of policy dialogues for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), will be held from Thursday (April 22) to Sunday (April 25). The Forum will bring together Bank and Fund staff, CSO representatives, government officials, and others to exchange views on a variety of topics ranging from energy and Bank / Fund reforms to education. For further information go here... 

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2. Zoellick Spring Meetings Speech: “The End of the Third World?”
On April 14, 2010, the World Bank President Mr. Zoellick delivered a speech at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars entitled: "The End of the Third World? Modernizing Multilateralism for a Multipolar World". In this speech Mr. Zoellick, states that we are now in a new, fast-evolving multipolar world economy – in which some developing countries are emerging as economic powers; others are moving towards becoming additional poles of growth; and some are struggling to attain their potential within this new system – where North and South, East and West, are now points on a compass, not economic destinies. "If 1989 saw the end of the “Second World” with Communism’s demise, then 2009 saw the end of what was known as the “Third World”, he went on. More... 


3. World Bank’s Financing for Recovery Hits a Record $100 Billion
The World Bank Group has committed $ 100 billion since July 2008, an all-time high, as it helps countries respond to and recover from the global downturn. The speed and scale of the Bank’s response to help countries through the financial crisis has been unprecedented, with support to 497 projects in areas such as safety nets for the poor, infrastructure to create jobs and build a foundation for recovery, agriculture to support small farmers, and micro-finance to help small and micro-enterprises. More...

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4. Historic Cross-Debarment Agreement Against Corruption
On April 9, 2010, the World Bank Group signed a cross-debarment agreement with the: African Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and Inter-American Development Bank. Under the new agreement, entities debarred by one these Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) may be sanctioned for the same misconduct by other participating development banks. The agreement represents the first global enforcement mechanism that internationalizes sanctions against fraud and corruption in development projects. By raising the costs of corruption, MDBs are setting a level-playing field for multinational and national companies to enhance development effectiveness guided by integrity principles. More…


5. Bank Approves Eskom Electric Energy Project in South Africa
The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved on April 8, 2010 a US$3.75 billion loan to help South Africa achieve a reliable electricity supply while also financing some of the biggest solar and wind power plants in the developing world. The loan aims to benefit the poor directly, through jobs created as the economy bounces back from the global financial crisis and through additional power capacity to expand access to electricity. More…

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6. Climate Investment Funds to Mobilize $40 Billion for Low Carbon Growth
One of the first international meetings to focus on climate finance since the Copenhagen summit last December, ended on March 19 with plans in place to mobilize some $40 billion for country-led low carbon growth. The week-long meetings of the Climate Investment Funds in Manila also made progress on support for developing country action on forests, renewable energies, and climate-resilient development. More...


7. Bank Launches Financial Resources Website
The World Bank recently launched a financial resources campaign, the first in 20 years, asking its shareholders to help replenish the institution’s capital base. The request comes in the wake of unprecedented demands for the Bank’s financial assistance stemming from the global economic crisis. This new page is a repository for the latest information on the financial resources campaign, offering an overview of the call for new resources, links to the Bank's results and reform pages, a rotating pool of third-party quotes endorsing the Bank's call for capital, and more...

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8. Maximizing Transparency in the Extractive Industries
Ahead of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Board meeting in Berlin on April 15-16, the World Bank Group called on candidate countries to maximize their efforts to achieve the key transparency milestone of completing EITI validation as soon as possible. Transparency in the extractive industries is vital for achieving poverty reduction, and the Bank Group is encouraged by the tremendous progress that has been made by several EITI countries in their efforts to finish the validation process,” said Paulo de Sa, Manager of the World Bank’s Oil, Gas, and Mining Policy Division. Two countries are now EITI-compliant, and 16 others have either completed validation, or are progressing towards it. More...



9. World Bank Alerts European Governments of Steep Economic Costs from Roma Exclusion
European countries are losing hundreds of millions of Euros annually in productivity and fiscal contributions as a result of economic and fiscal costs of Roma exclusion, according to the World Bank’s ongoing study “Economic Costs of Roma Exclusion,” . The preliminary findings by this study were presented by Ms. Tamar Manuelyan-Atinc (Human Development Director in the Bank’s Europe and Central Asia Region) at the Second European Roma Summit, held in Cordoba, Spain on April 8, 2010. The study, which focuses on the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Romania and Serbia, finds that the vast majority of working-age Roma lack sufficient skills to participate successfully in the labor market, and recommends investing in education as the economically smart choice to make. More… 

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10. Feedback Sought on Bank’s Main Website – Give your Views
The World Bank Website User Research team will be conducting interviews in early May, 2010 to help improve the usability of the website, and to gather feedback on new designs for www.worldbank.org. Participants will be able to preview the new website designs before the general public and play a role in making the site more useful for everyone. If selected for an interview, participants will be compensated for their time. Sign up takes less than a minute:


11. Cities Get Common Standard for Measuring Greenhouse Gas Emissions
The world’s cities now have a common method for calculating the amount of greenhouse gases produced within their boundaries. UNEP, UN-HABITAT, and the World Bank jointly launched the International Standard for Determining Greenhouse Gas Emissions for Cities on March 23 at the 5th World Urban Forum in Rio de Janeiro. The Greenhouse Gas Standard calculates emissions on a per capita basis, allowing cities to compare their performance and analyze the differences. More… 



12. Africans Living Outside the Continent Can Make a Development Difference Back Home
The World Bank recently hosted the second African Diaspora Open House in its Washington DC office. The event saw some 400 members of the African diaspora, representatives from 19 countries and 137 associations gathered to discuss ways to mobilize resources in order to further development in Africa. The World Bank estimates that African immigrants living abroad—mostly in North America and Europe—send home between US$32 and US$40 billion annually. This figure far exceeds the money that is given to Africa through formalized development aid channels. Speaking at the event, the Bank’s Managing Director, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and Vice President for Africa Region, Oby Ezekwesili both emphasized the “important nexus of the power that the Diaspora community possesses through their expertise and the capital that they amass, both of which are of critical importance to Africa’s economic development” and called on African nations to tap in to the Diaspora. More…

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REGIONAL NEWS AND PROJECTS

AFRICA

“Africa’s Golden Moment Has Come,” Says Bank Vice President for Africa
As 17 of Africa’s 53 nations celebrate 50 years of independence in 2010, Africa’s “golden moment has come,” said Bank Vice President for Africa Obiageli Ezekwesili at the recent Columbia University African Economic Forum in New York. Investors around the globe must look to the continent often painted only as risk-prone if they are to capitalize on business opportunities, Ezekwesili stated. More... 

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EAST ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

East Asia Emerging Stronger from the Crisis
The developing countries of East Asia, led by China, are recovering well from the global economic crisis, according to a new report from the World Bank. But how the region’s leaders handle the next round of important economic decisions will determine the strength and speed of future growth. More...

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EUROPE AND CENTRAL ASIA
Towards Better Health Outcomes in Europe and Central Asia
As the international community observes World Health Day, the World Bank’s program in Europe and Central Asia aims to improve health outcomes, building on the successes and focusing on the challenges that lie ahead for the health of the region’s most vulnerable groups. Various programs and interventions have been designed and implemented in different countries, aimed at improved financing and organization of health service delivery, raising awareness, and working with government on developing appropriate policies, laws, and regulations. More…

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LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Jamaica: Bank Announces New Partnership Strategy for Economic Stability and Growth
On March 23, the Bank Group’s Board of Directors endorsed the Jamaica Country Partnership Strategy for the next four years, which outlines future financial and technical assistance to foster economic stability and promote inclusive and sustained growth. The strategy is the result of close collaboration with the government, and benefited from wide consultations with parliamentarians, the private sector, civil society, youth organizations, trade unions and other international organizations. More...

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MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Workshop in Yemen
More than 45 representatives from civil society, government and the private sector gathered to share their experiences with the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). The World Bank, a co-organizer of the workshop, has supported the EITI process in Yemen since 2008 through technical assistance to the Ministry of Oil and Minerals and a multi-donor trust fund for training and capacity building efforts, as well as an EITI reconciliation audit. More…

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SOUTH ASIA

India's Tuberculosis Program Provides Hope to Millions
Tuberculosis (TB) is India’s leading cause of adult illness and death from a communicable disease. In 1993, the Indian government began to treat TB patients with the World Health Organization-recommended Directly Observed Treatment Short-course (DOTS). The first World Bank loan (1997- 2005) allowed rapid expansion of the DOTS strategy throughout the country. By providing free services through public and private health providers, the project ensured that the diagnosis and treatment of TB was available to all citizens regardless of their economic status. Between 1997 and 2008, more than 9.5 million people suffering from TB were diagnosed and placed on treatment, thus saving more than 1.7 million additional lives. More…

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JOBS

Civil Society Team Seeks Program Assistant
The Bank’s Civil Society Team (CST) is seeking a Program Assistant to carry out research, writing and administrative work. The person will be expected to carry out web-based research and monitor civil society trends, draft the monthly eDigest and other electronic products, manage CSO accreditation for the Annual/Spring Meetings, respond to CSO requests for information, handle meeting logistics, and carry out general administrative support for the team. Please see the full job description in the attached Terms of Reference. Interested candidates for this short term consultancy (STT) should send a short statement of interest and a resume to Nneka Okereke (nokereke@worldbank.org) by April 30, 2010.

Communications Officer (Social Media) - Washington, DC 
The Web Program in the Corporate Communications unit of External Affairs is looking for an experienced, hands-on Social Media innovator whose primary responsibilities is to lead the World Bank's presence in social media and emerging media tools. The Social Media Specialist will report to the Managing Editor of the Bank’s website. Interested candidates should apply by April 27, 2010. More...

See full list of current openings at the World

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EVENTS

"Safer Homes, Stronger Communities: A Handbook for Reconstructing after Natural Disasters" is being launched at World Bank Headquarters on Tuesday, April 27th (3-5 pm, J 1-050). The Handbook has been developed by the World Bank in partnership with various technical institutions, CSOs and UN agencies to support policy-makers and project managers engaged in major housing and community reconstruction programs after natural disasters. The Handbook also includes more than 100 case studies written by experts from around the world with hands-on experience in post-disaster housing and community reconstruction. If you are interested in this event, please send an RSVP to infoshopevents@worldbank.org


ON THE BLOGS

Africa Can Meet the MDGs
Shanta Devarajan, World Bank Chief Economist for Africa, argues that Africa can meet the Millennium Development Goals, if not by 2015, then soon thereafter. Although most African countries are off-track on most of the MDGs, Africa has, since the mid-1990s, arguably been making the greatest progress towards the goals. More…

Can Community Groups Influence Public Policy?
There is a common perception held by some that the dominating framework of social development practice is a community and that framework does not often extend beyond a certain group or a locality to include districts, provinces and other tiers of government. There is evidence, however, that social development can instigate structural changes and devolution of power by mobilizing a community to build associations and exercise their agency to influence broader national goals and policies. More...

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PUBLICATIONS / PODCASTS

Rebuilding Better after a Disaster: World Bank Handbook Guides Experts
The 2008 earthquake in China claimed over 68,000 lives; with the recent quake in Haiti, some 230,000 people are feared dead. The toll in both these calamities could have been dramatically reduced had homes, schools, hospitals and office buildings been built to withstand the earth’s violent tremors. “Safer Homes, Stronger Communities” is a handbook that gives policymakers and project managers the information they need to plan and carry out housing and community reconstruction projects that empower communities affected by disasters and that reduce their vulnerability to future disasters. Download the handbook, More…

Full List of Available Publications…

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This Newsletter is produced by the Civil Society Team of the World Bank (WB) in collaboration with other WB units. The Newsletter highlights some of the many policies, programs, and initiatives of the WB which may involve or be of interest to CSOs. We welcome your comments and feedback to make this newsletter as useful as possible. You can subscribe to the Newsletter using a new registration page: http://www.worldbank.org/civilsocietyengagementnewsletter/. Please share your comments on the Newsletter with us: civilsociety@worldbank.org. All past issues of the Newsletter can be found on the WB site on Civil Society Engagement at: http://www.worldbank.org/civilsociety


Last updated: 2010-04-19




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