Although conditions attached to food and fuel crisis lending are somewhat lighter, the Bank and the Fund should turn the crisis into an opportunity to learn that finance can be granted without the usual strings attached.
The causes of and remedies for the food crisis are hotly contested; how this rupture in the status quo is resolved will have decisive implications for the roles of the IFIs as well as more broadly for global food security and ecological sustainability.
Local farmers and agriculture activists in Sri Lanka have slammed World Bank intervention in the agricultural sector, saying it has caused the eradication of small-scale cultivation and resulted in high food prices, in particular rice and wheat.
A new report finds the World Bank culpable for the cattle industry's encroachment on the Amazon.
The World Bank has become a major financial and political supporter of Brazil's campaign for sugar-cane based ethanol and a free market for bio-fuels.
Stinging from a critique from its own evaluation unit on its work on agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa, the World Bank released its flagship annual report on agriculture in October to heavy criticism from civil society.
The World Bank recently released a near-final version of its 2008 World Development Report on 'agriculture for development', ahead of the official release on 19 October.
While the World Bank promotes the burgeoning carbon trading market as a "tool to help Africa's poor", an investigation has unearthed gross incompetence with the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) in which the Bank is heavily involved. A report by Oxfam points out serious inadequacies with the Bank's adaptation figures.
While a draft of the Bank's World Development Report on agriculture has undergone two civil society consultations, the prospective message and details of the final report remain vague.
The World Bank released a first draft of its latest World Development Report on 'agriculture for development' on 9 April.