Rights

Analysis

IFC fails to act on human rights abuses in Honduras

23 January 2014

January 2014 Observer main illustration IFC Honduras human rights

IFC accountability mechanism formally links World Bank client to human rights abuses on palm oil project in Honduras, and highlights systemic problems with IFC procedures.

October 2013 Manila workshop on disability and World Bank safeguards review. Photo: the Philippine Coalition on the UN CRPD

Rights

Commentary

Leaving behind the most vulnerable

The World Bank-funded conditional cash transfer programme in the Philippines fails to include people with disabilities, meaning they are missing out on vital support.

23 January 2014 | Comment
Mural for economic justice, San Salvador,

Gender

Analysis

IMF & gender: a long way to go

This briefing analyses the recently published IMF discussion note Women, work and the economy and draws some positive conclusions from its recommendations, whilst pointing to additional measures that the IMF can take to promote gender equity.

23 January 2014 | At Issue
USCapitol_Building_3-publicdomain

IFI governance

News

US Congressional legislation threatens IMF and World Bank plans

US legislature’s spending bill blocks IMF governance reform, insists the World Bank pay reparations to communities that suffer human rights abuses, and bans US support for large dams or extractive projects in tropical forests.

23 January 2014
Protestors calling for free prior and informed consent (FPIC) during a September 2013 protest in Sindhuli Bazar, Nepal. Photo: Shankar Limbu

Infrastructure

News

World Bank infrastucture support: "finance as extraction"

While India is pushing for the World Bank’s Global Infrastructure Facility, the US voted against IFC support for a Saudi Arabian corporation linked to coal power and an Inspection Panel case was registered for a Nepal power transmission project. Concerns were also raised on infrastructure projects in India, Nepal and Burma.

23 January 2014
Tunisian protesters at meeting of National Constituent Assembly meeting, by Amine Ghrabi

Conditionality

Analysis

IMF conditionality and its discontents

A new study shows a significant worldwide pattern of protests targeting the IMF, reflecting the increase in IMF influence through loan programmes with austerity conditions attached and indirect pressure on governments.

23 January 2014
Burning of Sengwer homes in Embobut evictions in January 2014 (credit FPP)

Environment

Analysis

Kenya evictions: foreshadowing future World Bank forest work?

Indigenous peoples have been evicted from their forests by a conservation project in Kenya funded by the World Bank. The Bank is currently drafting a new forests action plan.

23 January 2014

Finance

News

IMF influence in Europe weakening?

As eurozone crisis countries, such as Ireland, complete their loan agreements with the IMF and European lenders, the IMF looks to amend rather than end its role in Europe. Meanwhile, a European parliamentary committee is examining the lending agreements and questioning their efficacy and lack of transparency.

23 January 2014

IFI governance

Analysis

World Bank strategy: untested innovation or more of the same?

The new World Bank Group strategy moves into the implementation stage with changes to country planning and internal structure, but critics say that little will change.

23 January 2014

IFI governance

Background

The IFC’s development outcome tracking system

Since 2005 the International Finance Corporation (IFC, the Bank’s private sector arm) has used the Development Outcome Tracking System (DOTS) to track the development impact of all its investments and advisory work

23 January 2014 | Inside the institutions

Finance

News

IDA 17 record size, but down in real terms

The World Bank’s December 2013 claim of a record IDA replenishment was undermined by lumping donor loans in with grants and a decline in real terms, while India secured transitional support.

23 January 2014

IFI governance

Commentary

Bankspeak of the year 2013

The Bretton Woods Project awards the most comical use of words by members of staff at the World Bank and IMF in 2013.

23 January 2014 | Humour

IFI governance

Background

Recommended resources on the World Bank and IMF 2013

The best papers, books and electronic resources on the World Bank and IMF from 2013.

23 January 2014 | Resource