One billion people around the world are still chronically poor. Agricultural growth and productivity remains central to poverty reduction, particularly in the poorest countries, where a large share of the population relies on agriculture and agribusiness for their livelihood. In recent years, IEG has undertaken a series of evaluations of World Bank Group’s support to agriculture, rural development and agribusiness and other relevant fields such as rural finance, land redistribution, safeguards and sustainability policies, and competitive grant schemes.
Climate change is one of the biggest long-term risks to global development. Choices and investment made in climate change mitigation and adaption are vital for ensuring sustainable and inclusive growth, further contributing to the goal of alleviating poverty. IEG has undertaken a series of evaluations of World Bank Group’s support to climate change and related issues such as water, natural disasters, and environmental sustainability.
The 2008 global economic crisis originated in developed countries weakening world economies and threatening progress that developing countries have made during the past several years. The crisis spread quickly and took many governments and international organizations by surprise. IEG is conducting real- time assessments of World Bank Group’s ongoing crisis related activities and its immediate results.
Human development is a cornerstone issue in the face of global challenges that further affect people’s access to education, basic health care, food, and employment opportunities. The World Bank’s Human Development work covers projects and programs in the fields of Education, Health, Nutrition & Population (HNP), Social Protection & Labor, Children & Youth, HIV/AIDS, and Development Dialogue. In recent years, IEG has undertaken a number of evaluations of World Bank Group’s support to human development issues.
Recent events in Japan have spurred a renewed focus on natural disasters. Natural disasters destroyed $652 billion in property worldwide in the 1990s alone – an amount 15 times higher in real terms compared to the 1950s. Approximately 2.6 billion people were affected by natural disasters over the past ten years, compared to 1.6 billion the previous decade. Developing countries have borne the brunt of these catastrophes, accounting for over 95 percent of all casualties. IEG has undertaken a number of initiatives looking at the World Bank Group’s support for natual disaster relief.