corruption http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/taxonomy/term/589/all en Why doctors leave their posts – problem-solving irregularities in the health sector with healthcare workers in Bangladesh http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/why-doctors-leave-their-posts-problem-solving-irregularities-health-sector-healthcare-workers <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="" height="213" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/6792819478_ce19ec1b85_z.jpg" style="float:left" title=" Art Writ" width="320" />It’s not often you get together the very people working on the frontline to sit down together and discuss why and how irregular practices occur in their sector – and what can be done about them. But that’s just what we did with a group of frontline health workers at a <a href="https://ace.soas.ac.uk/health-2/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">workshop</a> in Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka in December 2017. We wanted to understand why corrupt and irregular practices occur in the health sector - what are the underlying incentives and processes? And what are some feasible and impactful ways to change these practices?<br /><br /> Many developing countries, including the three where our research consortium, the <a href="https://ace.soas.ac.uk/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Anti-Corruption Evidence research consortium</a> is working, Bangladesh, Nigeria and Tanzania, struggle to provide free or low-cost healthcare to all their citizens. Instead, citizens are often forced to buy services from the private sector at higher fees or worse, approach untrained or traditional healers. There is <a href="https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/why-corruption-matters-understanding-causes-effects-and-how-to-address-them" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">agreement in the literature</a> that a large proportion of these inefficiencies occur due to corrupt practices (though there’s an active debate about whether using the <a href="http://oxfamblogs.org/fp2p/how-should-the-aid-business-think-and-act-about-corruption/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">c-word</a> is helpful in this debate, which is why we talked about ‘irregularities’ during this workshop). Many of these practices are related to the way societies in developing countries are organized around patron-client relations, where tax resources are insufficient, and resources, jobs and promotions require lobbying powerful politicians.</p> </div></div></div> Wed, 28 Feb 2018 20:17:00 +0000 Mushtaq Khan 7783 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-314 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <a href="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/weekly_wire_8.jpg" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><img alt="" height="178" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/weekly_wire_8.jpg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title="" width="180" /></a><strong>These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</strong><br /><br /><strong><a href="http://www.itu.int/en/sustainable-world/Pages/report-hlpf-2017.aspx" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Fast-forward progress: Leveraging tech to achieve the global goals</a></strong><br /><strong>ITU</strong><br /> The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) adopted in 2015 invite global action by 2030 in three overarching areas: end poverty, combat climate change and fight injustice and inequality. Today we see ICT as a powerful enabler for each of the 17 goals, and an essential catalyst in driving rapid transformation of nearly every aspect of our lives.<br />  <br /><strong><a href="https://www.cgdev.org/publication/commitment-development-index-2017" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">The Commitment to Development Index 2017</a></strong><br /><strong>Center for Global Development</strong><br /> The Commitment to Development Index ranks 27 of the world's richest countries on policies that affect more than five billion people living in poorer nations. Because development is about more than foreign aid, the Index covers seven distinct policy areas: Aid, Finance, Technology, Environment, Trade, Security, Migration. Why does Commitment to Development matter? In our integrated world, decisions made by rich countries about their own policies and behaviour have repercussions for people in developing nations. At the same time, greater prosperity and security in poorer countries benefit the whole world. They create new economic opportunities, increase innovation, and help reduce risks posed by public health, security, and economic crises. The Commitment to Development Index (CDI) celebrates countries whose policies benefit not only themselves, but also the development of others, and promote our common good. </p> </div></div></div> Thu, 07 Sep 2017 13:28:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7748 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-290 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <strong><img alt="" height="178" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/2183144613_51456feb78_z_1_5.jpg" style="float:right" title="" width="180" />These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</strong></p> <p> <strong><a href="http://www.publicfinanceinternational.org/news/2016/12/commodity-crash-has-dragged-back-worlds-poorest-countries-finds-un" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Commodity crash has dragged back world’s poorest countries, finds UN</a></strong><br /><strong>Public Finance International</strong><br /> In a <a href="http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/ldc2016_en.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">report</a> on the progress of the world’s least developed countries (LDCs), published yesterday, the United Nations warned that a drop in international support also means these countries are likely to remain locked in poverty. It predicted the world will miss its target to halve the size of the LDC group by the end of the decade. The 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, which were agreed by world leaders last year and include targets on ending extreme poverty, are also at risk. “These are the countries where the global battle for poverty eradication will be won or lost,” said Mukhisa Kituyi, secretary general of the UN Conference on Trade and Development, which produced the report. “A year ago, the global community pledged to ‘leave no one behind’, but that is exactly what is happening to the LDCs.” Global poverty is increasingly concentrated in the 48 LDCs, which comprises mostly of African and Asian nations alongside some Pacific island states and Haiti.</p> <p> <strong><a href="http://www.oecd.org/corruption/oecd-recommendation-for-development-cooperation-actors-on-managing-risks-of-corruption.htm" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">OECD Recommendation of the Council for Development Cooperation Actors on Managing Risks of Corruption</a></strong><br /><strong>OECD</strong><br /> There is strong awareness among the global community that corruption poses serious threats to development goals and that international development agencies have a common interest in managing and reducing, to the extent possible, the internal and external risks to which aid activities are exposed, in order to obtain effective use of aid resources.  This Recommendation of the Council for Development Co-operation Actors on Managing the Risk of Corruption (Recommendation) promotes a broad vision of how international development agencies can work to address corruption, including the bribery of foreign public officials, and to support these agencies in meeting their international and regional commitments in the area of anti-corruption.</p> <p> </div></div></div> Thu, 15 Dec 2016 21:47:00 +0000 Darejani Markozashvili 7590 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-283 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <h4> <img alt="World of News" height="179" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title=" Flickr user fdecomit" width="180" /><span>These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</span></h4> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p> <strong><a href="http://www.unesco.org/culture/culture-for-sustainable-urban-development/pdf-open/global-Report_en.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Culture gives cities social and economic power, shows UNESCO report</a><br /> UNESCO</strong><br /> Culture has the power to make cities more prosperous, safer, and sustainable, according to UNESCO’s Global Report, Culture: Urban Future to be launched in Quito (Ecuador) on 18 October. The Global Report presents evidence on how development policies in line with UNESCO’s conventions on the protection and promotion of culture and heritage can benefit cities. Current trends show that urbanization will continue to increase in scale and speed, particularly in Africa and Asia, which are set to be 54 and 64 percent urban by 2050. The world is projected to have 41 mega cities by 2030, each home to at least 10 million people. Massive and rapid urbanization can often exacerbate challenges for cities creating more slums and poor access to public spaces as well as having a negative impact on the environment. This process often leads to a rise in unemployment, social inequality, discrimination and violence.</p> <p> <strong><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/adnan-z-amin/sustainable-cities-3-ways_b_12534084.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Sustainable Cities: 3 Ways Cities Can Contribute to a Renewable Energy Future</a><br /> HuffPost Blog</strong><br /> This week, global policy makers gather in Quito for the Habitat III Conference to reinvigorate the global commitment to the sustainable development of cities. Meeting every 20 years, the Habitat Conference will this year focus on setting a new Urban Agenda. Within this context and for the first time ever, the Conference will also discuss the rapid deployment of renewable energy as a means to achieve a sustainable urban future. This could not be timelier. Dramatic cost declines and technological innovations, present cities with an unprecedented opportunity to transform and decarbonise their energy supply on the basis of a positive economic case - an option that did not exist when the Habitat Conference last convened in 1996. This is great news, considering cities are home to 54% of the global population and generate 70% of global emissions.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 20 Oct 2016 13:42:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7542 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-280 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <h4> <img alt="World of News" height="179" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title=" Flickr user fdecomit" width="180" /><span>These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</span></h4> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> <strong><a href="https://globalanticorruptionblog.com/2016/09/26/guest-post-43-government-reps-walked-into-a-summit-what-next/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">43 Government Reps Walked Into a Summit…. What Next?</a></strong></div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> <strong>Global Anticorruption blog</strong></div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> International summits come and go, and all too often the promises made at these summits are quickly forgotten, lost in an online catacomb or otherwise hard to track. We at Transparency International are determined that the commitments made by government representatives at last May’s London Anticorruption Summit (648 total commitments by 41 of the 43 participating governments) must not slide into oblivion in this way. That’s why, as Matthew announced in a post earlier this month, we’ve gone through every single country statement and compiled all commitments into one central database, sortable by country, theme, and region. Our goal is for this database to be used by anticorruption advocates and activists to monitor what their countries have committed to, and whether and where they are making progress.</div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt">  </div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> <strong><a href="http://www.wsj.com/articles/mobile-networks-are-key-to-global-financial-inclusion-report-1474453800" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Mobile Networks Are Key to Global Financial Inclusion, Report Finds</a></strong></div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> <strong>Wall Street Journal</strong></div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt"> The ubiquity of cellphones could allow a rapid expansion of financial services throughout the developing world, with major implications for growth and credit accessibility, a McKinsey &amp; Co. report concludes. “With the technology that’s available today you could provide billions of people and millions of businesses opportunities that don’t exist to them today,” Susan Lund, co-author of the McKinsey Global Institute report on digital finance, said in an interview. The report found that with coordinated action by financial firms, telecommunications companies and developing-country governments, some 1.6 billion people could gain access to financial services by 2025, all without major new expenditures on physical infrastructure.</div> </div> <div style="margin:0in 0in 0pt">  </div></div></div> Thu, 29 Sep 2016 15:02:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7526 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Integrity Idol: How a reality TV show is changing minds about public service http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/integrity-idol-how-reality-tv-show-changing-minds-about-public-service <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even">In an age when celebrity culture and corruption appear to be omnipresent, it’s quite refreshing to be reminded that there are good people doing good work day in and day out.  These people work in our school systems, hospitals, charities, and as part of government bureaucracy.  Yes, bureaucracy.   <br /><br /> As Blair Glencorse states, “bureaucrats and civil servants can serve citizens in the way that they are supposed to.”  With this in mind, the organization he founded, <a href="http://www.accountabilitylab.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Accountability Lab</a>, created <a href="http://www.integrityidol.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Integrity Idol</a>, a global campaign run by citizens in search for honest government officials. It aims to “highlight the good people in the system” as way to establish a culture and expectation of honesty and personal responsibility in government postings. Integrity Idol began in Nepal in 2014, spread to Liberia in 2015, and now includes Pakistan and Mali.<br /><br /> The process of selecting an Integrity Idol is participatory from beginning to end. Local teams of volunteers travel across their countries gathering nominations from citizens, hosting public forums and generating discussion on the need for public officials with integrity. From the long list nominees, five are selected in each country with the help of independent panels of experts. These finalists are then filmed and their episodes are shown on national television and played on the radio for a week, and citizens can vote for their favorites through SMS short-codes and on the website. The winner in each country is crowned in a national ceremony in the capital.<br /><br /> Here, Glencorse discusses Integrity Idol back in 2014, when the program was just getting started in Nepal.  Nominations are now open in Pakistan, Nepal, and Mali. T<span>o nominate a candidate in one of these countries visit <a href="http://www.integrityidol.org/" rel="nofollow">www.integrityidol.org</a>.</span><br />  <div class="asset-wrapper asset aid-281 asset-video"> <strong > Integrity Idol: How a reality TV show is changing minds about public service </strong> <div class="content"> <div class="field field-name-field-asset-video-file field-type-emvideo field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><object type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" data="//www.youtube.com/v/937RoIl1svY"> <param name="movie" value="//www.youtube.com/v/937RoIl1svY" /> <param name="wmode" value="transparent" /> <param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /> </object> </div></div></div></div> </div></div></div></div> Wed, 27 Jul 2016 17:03:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7471 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Should aid fight corruption? New book questions logic behind this week’s anti-corruption summit http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/should-aid-fight-corruption-new-book-questions-logic-behind-week-s-anti-corruption-summit <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="" height="99" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/charles-kenny-portrait.jpg" style="float:right" title="" width="99" />Over at the Center for Global Development, Charles Kenny wants comments on the <a href="http://www.cgdev.org/blog/comment-please-draft-book-aid-donors-and-corruption" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">draft of his book on Aid and Corruption </a>(deadline end of May). Let’s hope this becomes standard practice – it worked brilliantly for me on <a href="http://oxfamblogs.org/fp2p/first-draft-of-how-change-happens-now-ready-anyone-want-to-read-it/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">How Change Happens</a> – more varied voices can chip in good new ideas, spot mistakes or contradictions, and it all helps get a buzz going ahead of publication.</p> <p> But let me take it one step further. As a contribution to the <a href="https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/anti-corruption-summit-london-2016" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">corruption summit</a>, hosted by David Cameron <span>on 12 May 2016</span>, I thought I would summarize/review the book. Charles gave the green light, provided I stress the ‘preliminary, drafty, subject-to-revisiony nature of the text’. Done.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="186" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/26921978071_958a49069d_z.jpg" style="float:left" title=" Crown Copyright" width="280" />The summit is about a lot more than aid – for example the rich countries <a href="https://t.co/cxYnX6pwrO" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">putting their houses in order on tax havens</a>. Which is just as well, because the book poses some real challenges to the whole ‘anti-corruption’ narrative on aid. What’s more, it is erudite, engagingly written and upbeat – as you’d expect given Charles’ optimistic previous takes like <a href="http://oxfamblogs.org/fp2p/getting-better-why-global-development-is-succeeding-review-of-charles-kennys-new-book/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Getting Better</a>. He’s got a great eye for telling research and ‘man bites dog’ surprise findings. Example: ‘Taking a cross section of countries and comparing current income (2010) to corruption perceptions in 2002 and income in 2002, results suggests more corrupt countries in 2002 have <em>higher</em> incomes in 2010.’</p> <p> His core argument is pretty striking – when it comes to aid and corruption, corruption does indeed matter, but the cure is often worse than the disease: ‘an important and justified focus on corruption as a barrier to development progress has led to policy and institutional change in donor agencies that is damaging the potential for aid to deliver development.’ Ouch.</p> </div></div></div> Wed, 25 May 2016 18:08:00 +0000 Duncan Green 7412 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-261 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><h4> <img alt="World of News" height="179" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title=" Flickr user fdecomit" width="180" />These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</h4> <p> <strong><a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/mediaaction/publications-and-resources/policy/working-paper/curbing-corruption-and-fostering-accountability-in-fragile-settings" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Curbing corruption and fostering accountability in fragile settings - why an imperilled media needs better support</a></strong><br /> BBC Media Action<br /> An independent media is one of the most effective assets we have in efforts to curb corruption and foster accountability. Yet it is deeply imperilled, particularly in fragile states and often poorly understood by the international development sector. This policy working paper argues that unless development strategies begin to prioritise support to independent media, corruption may continue to go unchecked and the accountability of states will diminish.</p> <p> <strong><a href="https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/05/africa-s-digital-revolution-a-look-at-the-technologies-trends-and-people-driving-it" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Africa’s digital revolution: a look at the technologies, trends and people driving it</a></strong><br /> World Economic Forum<br /> We are at the dawn of a technological revolution that will change almost every part of our lives – jobs, relationships, economies, industries and entire regions. It promises to be, as Professor Klaus Schwab has written, “a transformation unlike anything humankind has experienced before”. In no place is that more true than Africa, a continent that has yet to see all the benefits of previous industrial revolutions. Today, only 40% of Africans have a reliable energy supply, and just 20% of people on the continent have internet access.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 19 May 2016 14:52:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7406 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Fighting corruption behind the scenes: The evolving and ever important role of forensic audits in international development http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/fighting-corruption-behind-scenes-evolving-and-ever-important-role-forensic-audits-international <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><h4> Ryna Ferlatte heads the Forensic Services Unit of the World Bank’s <a href="http://www.worldbank.org/integrity" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Integrity Vice Presidency </a>(INT). She has over 20 years of experience in forensic accounting, audit and corporate financial accounting, and reporting. In this interview, she provides a window into the field of forensic auditing and explains why it's so important to global anti-corruption efforts.</h4> <p> <strong><img alt="" height="280" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/int-square-8.jpg" style="float:left" title="" width="280" />Why do we know so little about forensic auditing?</strong><br /><br /> Big corporate fraud and corruption cases like Enron, Satyam, Siemens and others offer the basis of knowledge for what forensic auditors can contribute, but forensic accountants often work in the background of these large investigations.  These cases show that the standard checks and balances, such as compliance, internal audit and external audit, are not always enough to <a href="http://pubdocs.worldbank.org/pubdocs/publicdoc/2015/12/616331449169323720/PSU.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">prevent fraud and corrupt</a>ion.  The role of an independent oversight function such as INT is critical and the World Bank has been a leader in including forensic auditing as part of the exercise of its audit and inspection rights of Bank-funded contracts.  But this is not the only way forensics can add value.<br /><br /> Today, there is more recognition that forensics can be used not only to identify and quantify fraud and corruption losses, but also can serve as a deterrent and help reduce instances of such wrongdoing. And while forensic standards and tools are evolving globally, the results of forensic audits emphasize its value as an effective tool that can be also used proactively to cut financial losses in vulnerable sectors and high-risk projects.</p> </div></div></div> Fri, 13 May 2016 16:33:00 +0000 Ryna Ferlatte 7400 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Weekly wire: The global forum http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/weekly-wire-global-forum-260 <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <div style="margin:0px; padding:0px; border:0px currentColor; vertical-align:baseline"> <h4> <img alt="World of News" height="179" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/Weekly%20Wire%20Photo_1.jpeg" style="padding:2px; border:1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); vertical-align:bottom; max-width:none; float:right" title=" Flickr user fdecomit" width="180" />These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.</h4> <p> <strong><a href="http://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/world/corruption-the-developing-world-has-bigger-problems-brazil" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Corruption? The developing world has bigger problems</a></strong><br /> Prospect<br /> Few challenges in international development ignite as much passion as corruption. Perhaps ironically given the recent Panama Papers scandal, the UK government has encouraged the “zero tolerance” approach to corruption in international development. This approach may be the ideal, but an effective strategy for tackling corruption must acknowledge that it is a social and political problem, rather than purely a moral one.  In March, we contributed to the UK parliament’s International Development Committee inquiry on tackling corruption overseas. In our evidence, we argued that corruption in the developing world is not the worst of all evils—and that it cannot be wiped out without collateral damage.</p> <p> <strong><a href="https://www.odi.org/publications/10381-time-let-go-remaking-humanitarian-action-modern-era" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Time to let go: remaking humanitarian action for the modern era</a></strong><br /> ODI<br /> The humanitarian sector is suffering a crisis of legitimacy. Despite a decade of system-wide reforms, the sector is failing to adapt to meet the needs of people in crises. As humanitarian emergencies become more frequent, more complex and last longer, the need for radical change is ever growing. Drawing on four years of research, this report argues that the humanitarian system needs to let go of some fundamental – but outdated – assumptions, structures and behaviours to respond effectively to modern day crises. It argues for a new model of humanitarian action, one that requires letting go of the current paradigm.<br />  </div></div></div> Thu, 12 May 2016 14:10:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7398 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Quote of the week: Ramón Fonseca http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/quote-week-ram-n-fonseca <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <em><img alt="" height="198" src="https://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/panama-1308874_640.jpg" style="float:right" title="" width="280" />“We are not afraid — we haven’t done anything bad. I always sleep well at night. My conscience is clear.”</em><br /> <br /> - <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ram%C3%B3n_Fonseca_Mora" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Ramón Fonseca</a>, a Panamanian novelist and lawyer. He is a&nbsp;co-founder of <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mossack_Fonseca" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Mossack Fonseca">Mossack Fonseca</a>, a law firm based in Panama with more than 40 offices worldwide that specialises in setting up offshore companies in tax havens. He was president of the <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paname%C3%B1ista_Party" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Panameñista Party">Panameñista Party</a> until he was dismissed in March 2016, due to the Brazilian <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Car_Wash" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Operation Car Wash">Operation Car Wash</a>&nbsp;(<span>Operação Lava Jato)</span>. In early 2015, more than 11.5 million&nbsp;documents, including emails, bank records and client information dating back several decades,&nbsp;were leaked from Mossack Fonseca.&nbsp;On April 3,&nbsp;2016, the <span>first news reports based on the papers, and 149 of the documents themselves, were published. </span>These documents have come to be known as the "<a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panama_Papers" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Panama Papers</a>", and have provided an unprecedented insight into the use of offshore financial centres by the rich and powerful. They show how wealthy individuals, including public officials, hide their money from public scrutiny.</p> </div></div></div> Mon, 11 Apr 2016 13:30:00 +0000 Sina Odugbemi 7367 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere The ‘decentralisation agenda’ must succeed http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/decentralisation-agenda-must-succeed <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="Morocco" height="180" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/2693408446_33d9519222_z.jpg" style="float:right" title=" © Curt Carnemark / World Bank" width="280" />Duncan Green’s blog hosted <a href="http://oxfamblogs.org/fp2p/is-decentralization-good-for-development/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">a post by LSE’s Jean-Paul Faguet</a> titled: <em>Is Decentralisation good for Development? </em>Faguet has edited a book by the same name that you can find <a href="https://global.oup.com/academic/product/is-decentralization-good-for-development-9780198737506?cc=gb&amp;lang=en&amp;" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">here</a>. This is a subject very close to my heart, and I believe in decentralisation as a value, just as I believe in democracy. It is often a work in progress, but it is a project worth persisting with, an ideal worth pursuing. Faguet’s research (at least, my interpretation of his work) therefore, really speaks to me. In this post, he makes several interesting and compelling points. For instance:</p> <p> On the advantage of competitive politics generated by decentralised systems:</p> <blockquote> <p> <em>Imagine you live in a centralized country, a hurricane is coming, and the government is inept. To whom can you turn? No one – you’re sunk. In a decentralized country, ineptitude in regional government implies nothing about the ability of local government. And even if both regional and local governments are inept, central government is independently constituted, probably run by a different party, and may be able to help. Indeed, the very fact of multiple government levels in a democracy generates a competitive dynamic in which candidates and parties use the far greater number of platforms to outdo each other by showing competence, and project themselves hierarchically upwards.  In a centralized system, by contrast, there is only really one – very big – prize, and not much of a training ground on which to prepare</em>.</p> </blockquote> </div></div></div> Wed, 06 Apr 2016 18:33:00 +0000 Suvojit Chattopadhyay 7361 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere Four ways open data is changing the world http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/four-ways-open-data-changing-world <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="Library at Mohammed V University at Agdal, Rabat" height="186" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/9126899431_2ae2fbbc3d_z.jpg" style="float:left" title=" Arne Hoel / World Bank" width="280" />Despite global commitments to and increasing enthusiasm for open data, little is actually known about its use and impact. What kinds of social and economic transformation has open data brought about, and what is its future potential? How—and under what circumstances—has it been most effective? How have open data practitioners mitigated risks and maximized social good?</p> <p> Even as proponents of open data extol its virtues, the field continues to suffer from a paucity of empirical evidence. This limits our understanding of open data and its impact.</p> <p> Over the last few months, <a href="http://www.thegovlab.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">The GovLab</a> (<a href="http://twitter.com/thegovlab" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@thegovlab</a>), in collaboration with <a href="http://www.omidyar.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Omidyar Network</a> (<a href="https://twitter.com/OmidyarNetwork" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@OmidyarNetwork</a>), has worked to address these shortcomings by developing 19 detailed open data case studies from around the world. The case studies have been selected for their sectoral and geographic representativeness. They are built in part from secondary sources (“desk research”), and also from more than 60 first-hand interviews with important players and key stakeholders. In a related collaboration with Omidyar Network, <a href="http://barefootintocyberspace.com/about/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Becky Hogge</a> (<a href="https://twitter.com/barefoot_techie" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">@barefoot_techie</a>), an independent researcher, has developed an additional six open data case studies, all focused on the United Kingdom.  Together, these case studies, seek to provide a more nuanced understanding of the various processes and factors underlying the demand, supply, release, use and impact of open data.</p> <p> After receiving and integrating comments from dozens of peer reviewers through a unique open process, we are delighted to share an initial batch of 10 case studies, as well three of Hogge’s UK-based stories. These are being made available at a new custom-built repository, <a href="http://odimpact.org" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Open Data’s Impact</a>, that will eventually house all the case studies, key findings across the studies, and additional resources related to the impact of open data. All this information will be stored in machine-readable HTML and PDF format, and will be searchable by area of impact, sector and region.</p> </div></div></div> Thu, 18 Feb 2016 16:32:00 +0000 Stefaan Verhulst 7311 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere The things we do: The high price of cheating a little http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/things-we-do-high-price-cheating-little <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="&quot;A Fool and His Money&quot; by David Goehring " height="187" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/5747629074_d484394fa5_z.jpg" style="float:right" title="" width="280" />Dishonesty is usually something we think about at the individual level.  Lies are errant, definite actions that individuals perform at specific moments. <br /><br /> But lies are also important in aggregate because the effect of many small lies taken together can be devastating.<br /><br /> Dan Ariely, a Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University, and his collaborators, starting in 2002, conducted a series of studies called “<a href="http://bigthink.com/neurobonkers/what-makes-us-dishonest-three-classic-experiments-from-behavioural-economics" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">The Matrix Experiments</a>”. In this experiment, the team gave participants, men and women from different age groups, 20 simple math questions. They asked them to solve as many questions as they can in five minutes and promised to reward the participants $1 for each problem solved. After five minutes, the participants are instructed to count how many problems they solved, insert their answer sheets into paper shredder machines, and report their results to one of the test supervisors to receive their cash. They did not need to show their answers as a proof. What the test takers did not know was that Ariely’s team programmed the shredders in such a way that they only shredded the margins of the papers while the main body of the page remained intact.<br /><br /> In the end, Ariely and his colleagues found that very few people lie a lot, but almost everyone lies a little.  They tested over 40,000 people and found that only a few dozen were “big cheaters” who claimed to have completed many more problems than they did.  Conversely, more than 28,000 people, or nearly 70 percent, were “small cheaters” who, on average, solved four problems but reported to have solved six.<br /><br /> What is interesting to note is that the sum of the team’s losses to so-called big cheaters was a total of $400.  Compare this to the few dollars each that “small cheaters” stole. Together, these small transgressions added up to a whopping $50,000, causing a much higher impact than the few bad apples.</p> </div></div></div> Tue, 09 Feb 2016 18:16:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7300 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere International organizations tip the scale towards integrity http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/international-organizations-tip-scale-towards-integrity <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <img alt="Anti-corruption image" height="280" src="http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/files/publicsphere/image_for_steves_blog.jpg" style="float:right" title="" width="280" />Over the last year, we have reached several noteworthy milestones in the global fight against corruption. In the arena of fighting corruption in international development, two important milestones stand out as having paved the way for significant progress and in setting us on a course for our continued success in reducing the impact of corruption on the poor.<br /><br /> It was ten years ago that the investigation into the UN’s Oil for Food corruption scandal came to an end. This was perhaps the biggest, most complex, corruption investigation to date involving an international organization. By virtue of its extraordinary status, the investigation was conducted under the leadership of an independent panel, including Paul Volcker (as Chair), Mark Pieth and Richard Goldstone, all of whom were and continue to be thought leaders for global integrity. The findings of the panel were sweeping and unflinching and, importantly, largely public.  An important consequence of the scandal and the ensuing investigation was in creating both the opportunity and a pressing mandate for international development agencies to take on corruption inside their own programs, and among their own staff.<br /><br /> As a result of this investigation, most UN agencies and other international financial institutions now have their own independent integrity office charged with rooting out fraud and corruption in their activities. While many are still small, under-resourced and looking for support from their leadership, individually and collectively they have the ability to make a difference. I am proud to say the World Bank Group has remained a leader in setting a high bar for integrity standards and in international development financing.  Within that framework, the 90 staff of the <a href="http://www.worldbank.org/integrity" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Integrity Vice Presidency </a>(INT) dedicate themselves to investigating, sanctioning and ultimately preventing fraud and corruption in Bank Group-financed operations. </p> </div></div></div> Mon, 11 Jan 2016 19:57:00 +0000 Stephen S. Zimmermann 7273 at http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere