Analysis

Finance

Analysis

Too much, too soon: IMF conditionality and inflation targeting

Gerald Epstein, professor of economics at the University of Massachusetts, finds that despite little evidence of the success of inflation targeting in promoting economic growth, employment creation or poverty reduction, the IMF is increasingly using loan conditions and technical assistance to push its use. There is an urgent need for viable alternatives that focus on employment generation, poverty reduction, export promotion and investment enhancement to be given more attention.

11 September 2006 | At Issue

IFI governance

Analysis

Beware the big, bland wolf

What has most surprised World Bank watchers is how little Paul Wolfowitz has changed the institution he took over one year ago. On Africa, infrastructure, debt relief and the environment, he has stayed the course - for better or worse - set by his predecessor James Wolfensohn. On the high-profile issue of corruption, he has created a lot of noise, but many question whether or not he has a plan. Only in his management moves has he lived up to the fears - or in some cases wishes - of his critic

19 June 2006 | At Issue

Finance

Analysis

Trip wires and speed bumps in service of global financial stability: A proactive role for the IMF

Under the current IMF strategic review, a "review of the effectiveness of the Fund's instruments to facilitate crisis resolution" is planned. Ilene Grabel, professor of international finance at the University of Denver, argues that the Fund must move from being a reactive institution to being a pro-active one. The IMF should use its technical expertise to mitigate the risks that culminate in financial crises, involving a programme of 'trip wires and speed bumps'.

8 April 2006 | At Issue

Finance

Analysis

The IMF and capital flight: Redesigning the international financial architecture

The international financial system facilitates trillions of dollars of capital flight from developing and developed countries to onshore and offshore financial centres, with the active participation of banks and other financial institutions. The consequences are massive tax evasion, a resultant erosion of state budgets, and rising disrespect for the law. The relevant international organisations that, working together, can change this situation are the IMF, the OECD, and the UN.

25 January 2006 | At Issue

IFI governance

Analysis

How much trust should we put in the funds?

In 2004, the World Bank was responsible for the disbursement of over $3 billion through the 903 trust funds that it manages. The amount of funds being channelled through trust funds looks set to take off as increased international aid commitments chase limited spending channels. Recipients of these funds may see them as manna from heaven - but if trust fund support is not additional to other aid commitments, is this an optimum use of resources or just a cacophony of voices all trying to pull t

16 September 2005 | At Issue

Rights

Analysis

World Bank support for extractives: complicity in human rights violations

Refers to the Bank's failure to adequately and explicitly address human rights in its policies, as well as the causality between Bank supported extractive projects and the exacerbation of conflict. Looks at case studies from Democratic Republic of Congo, Guatemala and Chad and Camerooon.

12 September 2005

Social services

Analysis

Secretive World Bank tribunal confronts calls to open up

Civil society groups are backing official calls for reform of the World Bank's International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes - however, the future of the reforms looks uncertain due to resistance from developing countries.

13 June 2005 | Briefings

IFI governance

Analysis

Kept in the dark: The World Bank, the IMF and parliaments

Parliamentarians from across the globe have signed on to the International Parliamentarians' Petition. They believe that parliamentarians should be the final arbiters of economic decisions. Current practice, however, means they are not. The World Bank and IMF continue to pressure developing country governments to overrule or sideline their legislatures; a far cry from the principles of good governance which the institutions themselves espouse.

10 April 2005 | At Issue

Conditionality

Analysis

The World Bank policy scorecard: The new conditionality?

The World Bank scorecard on borrowing country policies and institutions plays a key role in the allocation of overseas development assistance. Critics argue that the scorecard is a way to coerce borrowers into adopting the Bank's preferred model of economic development.

22 November 2004 | At Issue

IFI governance

Analysis

Development Gateway: biased, unaccountable and overpriced?

A study prepared for the Bretton Woods Project has found that the Development Gateway, an internet portal on development issues initiated by the World Bank, presents a biased picture of development debates, lacks independence and is inefficient when compared with other similar initiatives.

22 September 2004 | At Issue

Finance

Analysis

UK and the IMF 2003- 5th annual report to parliament

fifth annual report to Parliament on UK operations at the IMF

4 June 2004 | Review

IFI governance

Analysis

The World Bank’s knowledge roles: dominating development debates

Since 1996 the World Bank President has emphasised his institution’s roles as a “knowledge bank“. But just as one person’s terrorist is another’s freedom fighter, what some see as knowledge is viewed by others as propaganda for a particular world view.

28 May 2004 | At Issue