Role Of The World Bank In International Public Policy/management In The 21st Century – Research Proposal Example

World Bank Introduction Since its inception, the World Bank has been the prime institute for financial assistance and restructuring for the countriesacross the globe and has been instrumental in development activities. The purpose of the present study is to understand its role in international public policy management in view of the new challenges presented by the changing global scenarios in the 21st century. The paper will draw on earlier works done on the various functional aspects of the bank and make a case for an even stronger role by the bank with a renewed focus.
Part I- Policies and Instruments
Financial Assistance programs from the World Bank along with its Advisory Aid in the form of project appraisal, feasibility studies, macroeconomic and sector assessments and technical support, have been encouraging economic liberalization. (Rajan 2007) However under the “Structural Adjustment Programs”, the bank has been influencing the public policies in the borrowing nation. These conditions have also been directed at enforcing reforms such as opening up of economies and capital markets, disinvestments from the public sector companies, eliminating or cutting down of subsidies, cutting aids from social welfare schemes and reduction in fiscal deficits by means of encouraging privatization. Fighting poverty has been one of the top agendas of the bank. (Kapur et al 1997)
Levels of Bank Engagement: Restructuring & Development
1.1 World Bank Lending
1.2 Policy Advice and Policy Reforms
1.3 Leveraging Resources: Multi-Donor Trust Funds
1.4 Conflict Prevention
1.5 Post-Conflict Aid
1.6 Poverty Reduction Strategies
1.7 The Global Governance of Natural Resources
Part II- Role of the World Bank in Global Economic Reforms
Birdsall (2000) has found that ‘Structural Adjustment Programs’ which come with a host of conditions have been termed as ‘anti-poor’. The rich countries are of the opinion that most of the assistance or soft loans are being given to ‘middle income countries’ with the money being used by governments for corrupt practices. Economists are of the opinion that the bank programs have failed to achieve the desired objectives of public level reforms and poverty reduction. With these reasons behind, wealthy countries are not forth coming with additional financial contributions to the World Bank. Most of the borrowing countries now have an easy access to market finances. Initially Bulow & Rogoff (1990) and subsequently Allan Meltzer questioned rationale behind the very existence of the bank.
2.1 Privatization and Profits
2.2 Structural Adjustment Programs (SAPs)
2.3 Dealing with Debt and Arrears
2.4 Responding to Crises and Supporting Innovations
2.5 Impact of SAPs in Third World
Part III- Emerging Challenges and Evolving Roles
However, the 21st century has its new challenges. While the bank needs to shift focus from ‘middle income countries’ to poor countries in Africa, the developing and developed countries have to be brought around the purview of the Kyoto Protocol. World Bank studies have already predicted climate changes resulting in global warming resulting in shortage of food grains. According to Mallaby (2004) since World Bank is more effective than UNESCO and WHO, therefore, it has an important role to play in influencing the policies related to education and health particularly HIV/AIDS. (Ruger 2005) Among conflict ridden countries, psychological health of the populations, and reforms in the policies for effective utilization of the aid in post-conflict reconstruction. (Jorgensen 2004)
3.1 Free Trade Agreements And Private Capital Flows
3.2 The South Bank
3.3 Governance
3.4 Focusing on Underdeveloped Countries
3.5 Rebuilding Conflict ridden countries
3.6 Climatic Changes and Sustainable Development
3.7 Agribusiness and Food security
3.8 Education
3.9 Health
Part IV Conclusion
With reference to the works discussed above and more scholars, the study establishes that though there have been demands for a new bank or reducing the World Bank to an advisory body only, the resources, the infrastructure and the intellectual capital possessed by the bank is unmatched. It’s a matter of just reorienting its policies and focus away from middle income countries and working on some of the common problems faced by the people across the borders that will make its role ever effective in helping other countries and performing as a growth engine.
Birdshall, N. (2000); “The World Bank of the Future: Victim, Villain, Global Credit Union?”; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; Volume VII, Issue 2
Jorgensen, S.L. (2004); “The Role of the World Bank in Conflict And Development”; accessed on Oct.23, 2008 from
Mallaby, S. (2005); “Saving the World Bank”; Foreign Affairs; May/Jun2005, Vol. 84 Issue 3, p75-85, 11p;
Rajan, R. G. (2007); “The Future of the IMF and the World Bank”; accessed on Oct.23, 2008 from
Sparr, P. (2006); “Amplifying Local Voices To Democratize Development”; Bank Information Center; IFI Info Brief