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Civil Society Engagement eNewsletter - November 2011

1. World Bank Leads in Global Aid Transparency
2. World Bank Supports South Africa’s Largest Solar Energy and Wind Power Generation
3. Civil Society Voices: Reflections on the 2011 Annual Meetings
4. One Day on Earth 11.11.11
5. SEEKING INPUT - How Do High Food Prices Affect Local Communities?
6. Eight Countries Receive Funds for Climate Change Adaption Efforts
7. IFC Given Best Multilateral Development Bank Award
8. Live discussion on the Food Price Watch
9. Travel the Road to Busan
10. Maya is the World Bank's "baby 7 billion."
 

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

MAIN STORIES 

1. World Bank Leads in Global Aid Transparency
The World Bank was rated “best performer” in an aid transparency index released on Tuesday November 15 by Publish What You Fund. The Bank was ranked #1 out of 58 donor governments and agencies. This result follows the Aid Transparency Assessment produced by Publish What You Fund in 2010, which had also ranked the World Bank as the highest-performing donor among 30 major donors. While this important validation of the Bank’s openness and accountability agenda from Publish What You Fund was well received, Bank Managing Director Caroline Anstey underscores that, “it’s not just about making aid and aid agencies more open and accountable; it’s fundamentally about democratizing development.” More… 

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2. World Bank Supports South Africa’s Largest Solar Energy and Wind Power Generation
The World Bank made good on its promise during the signing of the ESKOM project last Spring to help the government of South Africa (SA) to accelerate the development of renewable energy and implement its Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) roadmap. With the $260 million loan from the Bank geared to renewable energy, it is hoped that South Africa’s carbon emissions will be reduced by five million tons a year. Speaking at the signing of the loan agreement, SA finance minister Pravin Gordhan said: "This is a very import step forward in SA's commitment to renewable energy - both in SA and beyond our borders." More…


3. Civil Society Voices: Reflections on the 2011 Annual Meetings
The World Bank Civil Society Team asked CSOs to share their impressions on camera about the Civil Society Program at the recent 2011 Annual Meetings. While several interviewees expressed appreciation for the Bank’s openness, others called for more space, and still others suggested ways the Bank can improve CSO participation. Click to watch the videos…

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4. One Day on Earth 11.11.11
On November 11, 2011, the World Bank joined One Day on Earth, a global day of filming to tell the world’s story. Together with thousands of filmmakers, other development agencies, and CSOs, Bank staff went out to document our work. More than 48 World Bank country offices filmed on the specific issue of 'Women at Work'; showing female beneficiaries of Bank-supported programs at work and asking them one question: “What does it mean for you to have a job? What difference does this job make for your life and for the life of your family”? For live updates from the country participants on 11.11.11, Follow: @Worldbank | @OnedayonEarth | @WorldbankVideos | @Worldbankphotos |
Search: #thinkEQUAL | #Onedayonearth. More… 


5. SEEKING INPUT - How Do High Food Prices Affect Local Communities?
How are communities around the world coping with the higher and more volatile food prices? What is the impact on poverty, or on nutritional outcomes? And, how should policymakers respond to such price spikes? These are only some of the questions that a major World Bank-IMF report, Global Monitoring Report (GMR), is delving into as it provides an annual assessment on progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), as well as the challenges which developing countries face in achieving them. The focus of GMR 2012 is on how food price developments affect the ability of countries to make progress towards the MDGs. The World Bank is reaching out to CSOs to help provide compelling community-level examples of how people have coped with higher and more volatile food prices at the community level. Please send us your experiences by writing to us on gmr@worldbank.org. Click here for the GMR 2012 website| Click here for the GMR 2012 Concept Note, which is available in seven languages.

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6. Eight Countries Receive Funds for Climate Change Adaption Efforts
The Climate Investment Funds recently approved over $1 billion in near-zero-interest loans and grants to support Bolivia, Honduras, India, Jamaica, Lao PDR, Mali, Mexico, and Nepal in their efforts toward arresting and adapting to climate change. In the same vein, the proposed design of the Dedicated Grant Mechanism for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities was approved by the Trust Fund Committee of the Forest Investment Program (FIP). The mechanism is expected to help enhance the capacity of indigenous peoples and local communities in managing and sharing knowledge around REDD+. More… 


7. IFC Given Best Multilateral Development Bank Award
LatinFinance, the most influential publication on financial markets in Latin America and the Caribbeans (LAC) region, has named the International Finance Corporation (IFC) as the "Best Multilateral/Development Bank in 2011”. This award was made public on November 14 during the Annual Conference of LAC Banks in Miami (Felaban). IFC was singled out by LatinFinance as "the best for its strategy, leadership, and overall performance" among other multilaterals and development banks operating in LAC. The publication highlighted IFC’s strong mobilization, innovation, and inclusive approach in fiscal year 2011. More...

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8. Live discussion on the Food Price Watch
The latest quarterly Food Price Watch published by the World Bank shows that global food prices remain high and volatile, hitting the poorest countries hardest and adding to the strains facing the global economy. José Cuesta, a senior economist at the World Bank and the author of the quarterly publication, discussed the state of world food prices in a live, online chat. Read the Food Price Watch and Read the recorded live chat.


9. Travel the Road to Busan
The 4th High Level Forum (HLF-4) on Aid Effectiveness in Busan, Republic of Korea, from November 29 - December 1, 2011, will be an opportunity to take stock of progress on the international aid effectiveness agenda and forge a new consensus on development partnerships going forward. Recognizing changes in the global development landscape—including the role of middle-income countries as major global actors and development partners—the World Bank and other stakeholders are working towards an inclusive HLF-4, which brings together traditional donors, low- and middle-income countries, foundations, the private sector, parliamentarians, civil society and non-governmental organizations, global funds and programs, and other stakeholders to discuss the variety of partnerships and approaches to development. More...

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10. Maya is the World Bank's "baby 7 billion."
Maya, the World Bank's "baby 7 billion," was born as the world hit the 7 billion population mark. Follow her as she grows from infancy to young adulthood, navigating the health and development challenges affecting children born in low-income countries. What will it take for Maya to lead a healthy, productive life? Find out as she posts regular updates in English, French, and Spanish. More… Find out more about how the World Bank is working with partners to help developing countries strengthen their health systems to save lives and eradicate poverty.


REGIONAL NEWS AND PROJECTS

AFRICA

Natural Gas Power Plant Brings Electricity Relief to 163,000 Households in Cameroon
The World Bank Group Board of Directors approved on November 10, 2011 an US$86 million loan and US$82 million Partial Risk Guarantee to support the Kribi Gas Power Project that is expected to supply reliable electricity to over 160,000 households in Cameroon, 50 per cent of whom are women. This facility will enable Cameroon’s first long-term project finance from local banks to the electricity sector. More… 

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EAST ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

Solar Systems for 400,000 Rural Households in China
Since the late 1990s, China has been actively promoting clean, renewable energy to try to balance growth and environmental concerns and ultimately to reduce its reliance on coal. In 2010, it set the goal of meeting 15% of its primary energy consumption through non-fossil fuels by 2020. Alternative sources of energy, such as solar panels, also represent a low-cost solution for the approximately 30 million people who lived in villages without electricity in 2002. See how the World Bank is partnering with China to meet its clean energy goals. More… 


EUROPE AND CENTRAL ASIA

World Bank, EBRD Join Forces to Cut Emissions from Gas Flaring in Russia and Central Asia
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has joined forces with the World Bank-led Global Gas Flaring Reduction partnership (GGFR) to help governments in Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan introduce energy efficiency measures to improve business competitiveness and environmental standards in oil and gas operations. This partnership will manage a ground-breaking market study designed to assess gas venting and flaring operations on about 100 oil sites spread across the four countries and identify the main obstacles that hinder the further utilization of associated gas. More… 

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LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN 

El Salvador: Additional Support for Flooding Victims and Recovery Efforts
El Salvador’s unusual high share of natural disasters over the years - hurricanes, earthquakes, mudslides - has had a significant toll on development both in terms of loss of life and missed contributions to the economy by people killed in their prime like Gloria. It is estimated that since 1972, natural disasters in El Salvador have claimed the lives of more than 6,500 people and caused more than US$16 billion in damages, with the poor taking the brunt of this toll. In light of the most recent floods, the World Bank disbursed US$50 million from the Disaster Risk Management Policy Development Loan Catastrophe Deferred Drawdown Option (Cat DDO). The funds will support the government’s efforts to cover the most urgent needs of flooding victims and to avoid gaps in the provision of public services. More...


MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Reforms Needed in Higher Education to Meet the Needs of Young People in Middle East and North Africa
A new report recently released by the Bank and French Development Agency titled, “Breaking Even or Breaking Through: Reaching Financial Sustainability While Providing High Quality Standards in Higher Education in the Middle East and North Africa”, has highlighted the need to increase funding to meet the demands for more and better education opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The report stresses the need to diversify sources of funding and improve the efficiency in the use of current funds. More… 

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SOUTH ASIA

Improving Health Services For Tribal Populations
India’s poor tribal people have far worse health indicators than the general population. Most tribal people live in remote rural hamlets in hilly, forested, or desert areas where illiteracy, malnutrition, inadequate access to potable water, and lack of personal hygiene and sanitation make them more vulnerable to disease. Click here to see how World Bank-supported State Health Systems Projects in three Indian states of Rajasthan, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu have recently adopted a number of innovative strategies to improve the health of these tribal groups. More...


JOBS

Operations Officer, Washington, DC
The World Bank Institute (WBI) is a global connector of knowledge, learning, and innovation for poverty reduction. WBI’s Governance practice is working to support, create, and sustain coalitions of diverse stakeholders from the public, private, and civil society sectors to help facilitate and manage the complex process of implementing reform. This unit is looking for an Operations Officer that will among other things coordinate capacity building programming in support of enhanced contract monitoring. Application was posted on November 16 and closes on Dec 7. Working knowledge of English and French languages are essentials to the position. For more information and to apply, go here…

Visit World Bank jobs website for more opportunities...

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EVENTS

Fourth High Level (HLF-4) Forum on Aid Effectiveness, Busan, 29 Nov. – 1 Dec. 2011 
The Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness will be held on 29 Nov. – 1 Dec. 2011 in Busan, Republic of Korea. The conference follows the High Level Forums held in Rome (2003), Paris (2005) and Accra (2008) and will conclude the OECD/DAC-led process on aid effectiveness that was launched by the Paris Declaration in 2005. As such, the Busan High Level Forum will be a major milestone and turning point for the global aid effectiveness agenda. The forum will also be an important and last opportunity for CSOs from all corners of the globe and across many sectors to come together to develop a collective strategy around the priority issues for HLF-4 and beyond. More…

Engaging Citizens Against Corruption in Asia: Approaches, Results, and Lessons
Partnership for Transparency Fund (PTF) and its partners are holding a three-day regional peer- learning and knowledge sharing workshop on fighting corruption. The workshop, which is scheduled to take place from 29th November to 2nd December 2011 in the city of Jaipur, India, will bring together Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) from 8 countries in Asia and anti-corruption experts from all over the world. The workshop will feature results from over 30 case studies and four country programs. For inquiries about participation, accessing content/papers, and additional information, please contact Johannes Tonn jtonn@ptfund.org or vbhargava@ptfund.org.

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ON THE BLOGS

Helping Smallholder Farmers: Climate Smart Agriculture
The World Bank recently co-organized the Global Science Conference on Climate-Smart Agriculture in Wageningen, Netherlands as part of its efforts to build the store of knowledge that can help small holder farmers around the globe increase productivity and build resilience to climate change. Fionna Douglas blogged on the conference. Read… 

Food Prices, Nutrition and the Millennium Development Goals
Each year, the Global Monitoring Report (GMR) focuses on a special theme that is particularly pertinent. With the surge in international food prices in the second half of 2010 provoking concerns of a “second food crisis”, the focus of GMR 2012 is on how food price developments affect the ability of countries to make progress towards the Millennium Development Goals. In this blog, GMR 2012 lead coordinator Jos Verbeek provides an outline of the upcoming report. Read...


WEB / PUBLICATIONS / PODCASTS

World Bank Launches a New Trade Website
As part of its mission, the World Bank Group (WBG) supports trade as a platform to sustainable growth and development. Its trade program aims to promote a global trading system that is more supportive of development; integrate trade competitiveness into countries’ development strategies; and encourage trade policy and trade facilitation reforms through effective aid for trade programs. The new Trade website showcases trade work across the Bank in a more user-friendly way and also highlights a special section for Views from the Field, and a LinkedIn page for trade experts. More…


Skills, Not Just Diplomas: Managing Education for Results in Eastern Europe and Central Asia
Earlier boom years in the Eastern Europe and Central Asia region exposed significant bottlenecks to growth, particularly with respect to the skills of the labor force. Paradoxically, for a region with relatively high and expanding educational attainment (as measured by the number of years of completed schooling) and relatively high-quality education in the early years of schooling, a shortage of worker skills has emerged as one of the most important constraints to firm expansion. This new book by the World Bank seeks solution to this paradox. More…

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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



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