Environment

News

ICSID in crisis

The International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) is facing an explosion of cases and increasingly vocal criticism from Latin American countries. Questions remain over whether it helps channel productive investment to developing countries or serves as a tool for multinational corporations to get their way.

10 July 2009

Finance

Commentary

Hungary and the IMF: indebted future

In Hungary, the IMF seems to be modestly improving its flexibility and conditionality compared to its dreadful practices in previous decades. However, a still distinctively neoliberal vision of how economies work is in play attributable as much to the Hungarian government as to the IMF. The deficits of democracy and poor economic governance in Hungary make our indebted future increasingly bleak.

10 July 2009 | Guest comment

IFI governance

News

Reviews fail to erase doubts over World Bank conditionality

Reviews of World Bank development policy lending and poverty and social impact analysis leave questions as to the extent to which the Bank's budget support in developing countries targets pro-poor initiatives.

10 July 2009

IFI governance

Background

The International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)

The International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), part of the World Bank Group, is an arbitration forum between governments and foreign investors to settle investment disputes. Two thirds of international investment disputes go through ICSID.

10 July 2009 | Inside the institutions

Environment

News

U-turn on Doing Business: time to withdraw from the knowledge bank?

The World Bank Group has recently admitted that some crucial assumptions of its Doing Business report were misguided, and faces a fundamental critique of its knowledge role.

10 July 2009

Finance

News

Record World Bank lending

In June, the World Bank announced record levels of lending with much of the funding for infrastructure projects, where the Bank's record has been particularly controversial.

10 July 2009

Infrastructure

News

Controversy continues: The World Bank's hydropower

A recent paper by Bank staff, which argues for enhanced support of large hydropower projects, has reignited controversy over the Bank's approach, with NGOs claiming that project planning and implementation still show disregard for social and environmental considerations.

10 July 2009

Rights

News

The IFC: opportunist expansion?

The financial crisis has resulted in an expanded role for the International Finance Corporation (IFC), but its methods may leave a bitter taste with civil society.

10 July 2009

IFI governance

News

IMF austerity chills crisis countries

Criticism of the IMF continues to mount as some crisis lending dishes out heavy conditionality. Meanwhile emerging markets have agreed to stump up the cash to refill the Funds coffers, but only on their own terms.

10 July 2009

Finance

News

International monetary reform: IMF not in the game

The financial crisis has reinvigorated discussion of exchange rate management and reform of the monetary system, but lack of progress at international forums like the IMF means change is only happening at the regional and bilateral level.

10 July 2009

IFI governance

News

World Bank health work flawed

A recent evaluation of the World Bank's work in health is damning in its criticism of the lender's approach, particularly in Africa. Meanwhile, the Bank is continuing to push privatisation in public services such as health, education and water despite fierce criticism.

10 July 2009

Gender

News

Will rights and gender be at the heart of World Bank's climate response?

Initially flagged as a global environmental problem, increasing attention is being drawn to the impacts climate change has on human rights and equity related issues such as gender, as well as the World Bank's role in tackling them.

10 July 2009

IFI governance

News

Economic crisis: rich countries block reform at UN summit

The first major conference on the financial and economic crisis to involve all countries ended with rich countries blocking substantive reforms demanded by developing countries. The UN conference did however push key issues up the international agenda, such as the need for a better system of international reserves, and for genuine policy space for developing countries.

26 June 2009