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Civil Society Engagement eNewsletter - October 2010

1. World Bank Scores High on Aid Transparency
2. 2010 Annual Meetings: Milestone for Civil Society Participation
3. Governments Endorse Strong Replenishment of "Bank Fund for the Poorest"
4. African CSOs Leaders Call for IDA 16 Replenishment and Agricultural Financing
5. Ngozi Speaks at “Stand Up for the MDGs” Event in New York
6. Make a Difference - Enter the Apps for Development Competition!
7. Developing Countries Increase Presence on Bank’s Board with Appointment of Third Sub-Saharan Seat
8. Pakistan Flood Damage Assessed at $9.7 Billion
9. World Bank Reactivates Emergency Food Fund Amid Concern Over Food Volatility
10. Zoellick Urges New Approach to Development Economics Research
11. World Bank Working With Computer Programmers to Improve Disaster Response
12. Feedback Summary of the Phase I Environment Strategy Consultations
 


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


1. World Bank Scores High on Aid Transparency
The World Bank Group scored the highest ratings on aid transparency among 30 leading multilateral and bilateral aid agencies, according to a recent study by Publish What You Fund. This assessment is the first attempt to undertake a detailed comparative assessment of current levels of aid transparency among bilateral and multilateral donor agencies. The study, called the "Aid Transparency Assessment 2010", represents the first global report using the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) standards. The World Bank was the highest overall scoring donor agency (85.4%), and is well above average in nearly all seven indicators. More... 

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2. 2010 Annual Meetings: Milestone for Civil Society Participation
Reflecting the theme of promoting greater openness, the recently concluded 2010 World Bank / IMF Annual Meetings (AMs) signified an important milestone for civil society participation. Not only was it the largest gathering of CSOs in a Washington-based AMs, but CSO leaders were invited for the first time to participate in the official Opening Plenary. CSOs also organized numerous policy sessions on a wide range of topics, from environmental safeguards and energy strategy to health effectiveness. A total of 400 civil society representatives from over 62 countries attended the Annual Meetings. More…


3. Governments Endorse Strong Replenishment of "Bank Fund for the Poorest"
At the conclusion of the Bank-IMF Annual Meetings in Washington on October 10, 2010, shareholders endorsed the Bank Group’s efforts toward sustainable recovery, with a results-focused approach. Members of the Development Committee also called for a strong replenishment of IDA—the Bank’s fund for the world’s 79 poorest countries—which they said was one of the most important instruments for achieving the Millennium Development Goals. More…

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4. African CSOs Leaders Call for IDA 16 Replenishment Tied to MDGs
In a press statement released in Washington DC on Monday October 11, a group of 20 CSO leaders from Africa stated their support for a “robust IDA 16 replenishment” arguing that IDA has been instrumental in financing health, education, agriculture, infrastructure, and institutional development in 39 countries in Africa. They cite the case of Malawi where IDA has helped the government generate a 12 percent decline in poverty, from 52 percent in 2005 to 40 percent in 2008. They also noted that IDA’s role in helping to meet the MDGs by leveraging resources for fighting HIV/AIDs and promoting poverty reduction. Find here press release and press coverage. 


5. Ngozi Speaks at “Stand Up for the MDGs” Event in New York
World Bank Managing Director Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala spoke to hundreds of CSO activists gathered in Lincoln Center for the "Stand Up for the MDGs - Take Action" event on the eve of the MDG Summit in New York. This event was one of 2038 events that took place in 74 countries across the globe during September 17-19, calling on governments to keep their promises to reach the MDGs by 2015. Ngozi reaffirmed the Bank's commitment to the MDGs, what results IDA has had thus far, and specific financial pledges over the next five years to help countries reach the MDGs. She endorsed the theme of the event, saying she hoped that the MDGs Summit would "not just be words, but action". More...

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6. Make a Difference - Enter the “Apps for Development Competition”!
The World Bank has launched the first global competition for software applications to help reduce global poverty. The “Apps for Development Competition” aims to bring together software developers and development practitioners to use the World Bank data in the creation of innovative software applications. The Competition challenges participants to develop software apps related to one or more of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The apps could serve to raise awareness, measure progress, or help achieve the MDGs and should also use one or more datasets from the World Bank Data Catalog. The Competition opened on October 7, 2010 and the deadline for submissions is January 10, 2011. More... 


7. Developing Countries Increase Presence on Bank’s Board with Appointment of Third Sub-Saharan Seat
In a decision that boosts efforts to see developing countries gain a majority of seats on the Board of the Bank Group, Bank governors elected Dr Renosi Mokate, former deputy governor of the South African Reserve Bank, to the Bank’s 25-member Board. This achieves an important milestone in the Bank Group’s efforts over the past two years to boost voice and representation of developing and transition countries, which by a 4.6% increase, now stand at 47.2%. Ms. Mokate will represent South Africa, Nigeria and Angola and will take up her seat on the Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors on November 1, 2010. More… 

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8. Pakistan Flood Damage Assessed at $9.7 Billion
The floods that swept across Pakistan since July have caused an estimated $9.7 billion in damage, almost double that caused by the 2005 earthquake, according to a joint assessment by the Asian Development Bank and World Bank. The nationwide damage needs assessment survey found that agriculture and livestock sectors have been hit the hardest. The concluded survey was earlier submitted to the Government of Pakistan and recently made public at the Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FoDP) meeting in Brussels, Belgium. More… 


9. World Bank Reactivates Food Emergency Fund Amid Concern Over Food Volatility
Amid concern over heightened food price volatility and its impact on poor countries, the Bank will extend the life of its Global Food Crisis Response Program (GFRP) to June 2011. The move will allow the Bank to respond more swiftly to calls for assistance by countries hit hard by food price spikes, by allowing the fast-track processing and disbursement of up to US$760 million in existing funds for countries in need. CSOs have participated actively in supporting project implementation over the past two years in 13 countries, ranging from school feeding programs in Togo and delivery of agricultural inputs to farmers in Somalia, to cash-for-work programs in Sierra Leone and Liberia. More… 

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10. Zoellick Urges New Approach to Development Economics Research
On September 29, in a lead-up to the 2010 World Bank Group/IMF Annual Meetings recently held in Washington DC, Bank Group President Robert B. Zoellick gave a speech at Georgetown University in which he urged a rethink of development economics to make it more relevant to policymakers. Zoellick outlined a reorientation of World Bank research so it taps more effectively the experiences of developing countries through “Open Data, Open Knowledge, Open Solutions.” He reiterated the need for development knowledge to become “multi-polar” in recognition of the rising importance of developing countries as new poles of growth and experience. More… 


11. World Bank Working with Computer Programmers to Improve Disaster Response
In late September, 2010 the World Bank partnered with CrisisCamp - a group of volunteer disaster experts and programmers to create new tools to help respond to crises, including the recent floods that have devastated Pakistan. The crisis camp saw volunteers tackle real-time problems from the Pakistan flood relief effort. World Bank disaster experts currently assessing the damage and reconstruction needs in Pakistan provided insight on the real-time problems they are seeing for the Crisis Campers to work through. CrisisCamp is a global network of hybrid ‘barcamp / hackathon’ events which bring together people and communities who innovate crisis response and global development through technology tools, sharing expertise, and problem solving. More…

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12. Feedback Summary of the Phase I Environment Strategy Consultations
The World Bank Group (WBG) embarked on the development of a new Environment Strategy in October 2009. This has included a two phase multistakeholder consultations process. The first phase, which was completed in June 2010, involved conversations between the WBG and over 2,350 individual stakeholders from 126 countries. The clear message from the consultations was that environmentally sustainable development is an important priority for most countries and the WBG should help them achieve this by: i) promoting a new development paradigm; ii) strengthening governance and institutions; iii) improving safeguards and mainstreaming them further; v) increasing coordination with development partners. For a detailed report on the feedback received from stakeholders go to: Environment - 2010 Environment Strategy Consultations. More... 

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REGIONAL NEWS AND PROJECTS

AFRICA

Agriculture Boom in Africa Could Have Greater Development Impact than Mobile Phones
Agriculture and agribusiness offer the biggest transformational potential for Africa, with an even greater positive impact on ordinary people’s lives than the mobile phone boom. Addressing an Africa Investment Climate Summit held recently in Washington, DC, Bank Vice President for Africa, Obiageli Ezekwesili declared that Africa is, “on the cusp of an economic transformation”. Urging investors to look to a holistic approach to the modernization of Africa’s agriculture sector, she said, “If you ask me what the next ‘big thing’ in Africa will be, I’d say without hesitation: agriculture and agribusiness.” More… 

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EAST ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

Robust Recovery, Rising Risks: Large Capital Inflows Present New Policy Challenges in East Asia and Pacific
The latest East Asia and Pacific Economic Update released on October 19th in Tokyo by the World Bank has shown that while economic recovery in East Asia and the Pacific is robust, attention must now turn to managing emerging risks which may pose challenges to macroeconomic stability. The report puts the real GDP growth to 8.9 percent rise in the region in 2010 (6.7 percent excluding China), up from 7.3 percent in 2009 and in line with the average growth rate during 2000-2008. Private sector investment is once again driving growth, confidence is on the rise, and trade flows have returned to pre-crisis levels. More...

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EUROPE AND CENTRAL ASIA

Concerns on Jobless Recovery in Emerging Europe and Central Asia
Economic growth has returned to emerging Europe and Central Asia, but it has come with concerns about its jobless nature and doubts about its durability, according to a World Bank report. The region was hit harder by the financial crisis than any other region in the world. While the region projected to grow 3.9% in 2010, this growth is the weakest among emerging economies. More… 

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LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Latin America's Growth Expected to Reach 5-6% in 2010
Latin America is emerging largely unscathed after the global financial crisis, according to a recent World Bank report. The report suggests that the region’s economic demeanor is resilient, globalized, and dynamic as it zips towards 5-6% growth for 2010. The report also shows that Latin America’s investments in social protection managed to shield the most vulnerable from the worst effects of the downturn. More… 

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MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

New Bank Facility Will Address Infrastructure Gap in Middle East
On October 9, 2010, the World Bank in cooperation with the Islamic Development Bank announced a new facility aimed at leveraging up to $1 billion to close the infrastructure gap in the Middle East and North Africa. This regional investment initiative is geared to sustaining growth rates achieved in recent years and boosting economic competitiveness. It will also act as a vehicle to support both conventional and Shariah-compliant investment in infrastructure. More… 

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SOUTH ASIA

Small Business: Engines of Growth in Post Conflict Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka has seen steady economic growth over the past decade despite a fragile macro-economic environment; the decades-old civil conflict; a large fiscal deficit, and challenges posed by the current global economic crisis. To achieve higher growth, the World Bank is supporting small businesses which comprise more than 90% of Sri Lankan companies. More… 

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JOBS

Senior Communications Officer-Foundations, (International Hire) Washington DC
The External Affairs Vice Presidency (EXT) of the World Bank manages strategic communication and relationships with key stakeholders for the World Bank Group. EXT’s overall mandate is to increase understanding and support for the Bank Group’s mission both at the global and country levels, and to leverage the Bank Group's development impact through effective communication, advocacy, diplomacy and issues management. This unit is seeking a Senior Communications Officer (Foundations) who will serve as an account manager for high-level relations between the World Bank Group and foundations. Closing date is November 10, 2010. More... 

Communications Director, (International Hire) Washington DC
The External Affairs Vice Presidency (EXT) of the World Bank is seeking an experienced and dynamic professional as Director to head the Corporate Communications department (EXTCC). The Director will be responsible for media relations, broadcast, web, and internal communications. S/he will report directly to the Vice President for External Affairs. Closing date is November 4, 2010. More...

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EVENTS

2010 Global Youth Conference: Year of Youth, Years of Impact
The World Bank’s Youth to Youth Community is organizing a youth conference on Nov. 11. The overarching goal of the conference, which is attended by over 700 young professionals and students every year, is to Inspire, Engage and Empower. This year, the conference hopes to achieve those goals by focusing on 3 elements of youth development – Peace and Conflict Resolution, Leadership and Sustainability. To this end, the conference will convene practitioners, experts, academia, and organizations from around the world and facilitate the exchange of best practices and lessons learned, the formulation of new ideas, and the creation of symbiotic relationships with the common goal of empowering the world’s youth. Attendance is free but registration is required.
Online registration is now open, click here to register.

Learn more on our facebook page: 
http://www.facebook.com/pages/World-Bank-Group-Youth-to-Youth-Y2Y-Community/143045055715320


Did You Miss the Open Forum?
The World Bank's first-ever Open Forum—an interactive, online conversation about pressing development issues—threw open to the public discussions normally held behind closed doors. Three sessions, held Oct. 7 and 8, brought together well-known thinkers and actors in three key areas: the open development movement, jumpstarting jobs, and today’s development challenges. You can still catch the discussion by clicking here...

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ON THE BLOGS / PODCASTS

Are CSOs Welcome at the World Bank?
This question may have been hard to respond in the affirmative some years back, as Civil Society Organization representatives were still a rare sight at the Bank. It may be hard to believe today, but 20 years ago visiting CSOs had to be physically escorted throughout the buildings, and it was not uncommon for some CSOs to be refused entry. Today, CSOs are actively welcomed and some even have long-term building passes to facilitate their daily meetings at the Bank. More….


Can Africa Trade With Africa?
There is strong consensus among African leaders that regional integration is indispensable to unlock economies of scale, writes Obiageli Ezekwesili (Bank Vice President for Africa), recounting a recent discussion with African leaders on the actions required to accelerate intra-African trade. More…

See current Bank blogs: http://blogs.worldbank.org/ 

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WEB / PUBLICATIONS / PODCASTS

Launch of Bank’s 2010 Anti-Corruption Annual Report
Joining the spirit of "openness and accountability" that marked the recently concluded World Bank’s 2010 Annual Meetings, the Institutional Integrity (INT) department of the World Bank organized a workshop to update delegates on the implementation of the Cross-Debarment Agreement. The Department also launched its 2010 Annual Report which highlights that integrity at the World Bank works. More…

Financial Crisis Discouraged Entrepreneurship in Richer Countries
New business creation dropped sharply in richer countries amid the global financial crisis, but didn’t change much in many lower-income countries, according to a new World Bank survey. The 2010 World Bank Group Entrepreneurship Snapshots, the most extensive global survey of new business registration, also found that new business registrations were higher in countries with a stable legal and regulatory regime, an easy registration process and low corporate taxes. More…

Gender Action Plan Newsletter, Fall 2010
The World Bank Gender Team has released its fall newsletter edition. Some of the highlights include: Gender and Biofuels in Mozambique, Women Entrepreneurs in Southern Sudan, Ethiopian Women Gain Status Through Landholding, etc. To Read More and to subscribe, visit… 

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: 2010-10-28




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