Organization
World Bank
Report Year
2015
1st MAR Year
2016
Accepted
Yes
Status
Active
Recommendation

Develop an Updated Strategy for Learning and Knowledge Sharing with the Institutional Accountabilities for the Implementation of that Strategy clearly identified:
- Develop an updated strategy for learning and knowledge sharing which ensures that the Bank makes optimal use of all relevant learning and knowledgea strategy that gives sufficient weight to behavioral drivers, and focuses, in particular, on: informal learning and tacit knowledge; strong and visible incentives for staff learning and development outcomes, including the necessary time and budget for them; the balance between global and local knowledge; and project adaptiveness.
- Clearly identify the governance arrangements and institutional accountabilities for learning and knowledge, specifying who is accountable for what at each level, in order to ensure the effective implementation of the strategy.

Recommenation Adoption
IEG Level of Adoption by Year: mar-rating-popup SNTNTNT Management Adoption by Year: mar-rating-mng-popup SNTNTNT
CComplete
HHigh
SSubstantial
MModerate
NNegligible
NANot Accepted
NRNot Rated
Findings Conclusions

The Bank has launched a series of knowledge and learning initiatives, including the Operational Core Curriculum. These important steps now need consolidating into a strategy that takes into account the important role of informal learning and tacit knowledge.
The recent reorganization of the World Bank has not created the governance structure needed to ensure that accountability for incorporating knowledge and learning into operations is clearly delineated.

Original Management Response

WB: Partially Agree. The report defines "learning" in a very broad way, encompassing a wide variety of topics that are already captured in operational policies and procedures, human resources policies and practices, and knowledge and learning related initiatives and approaches, including LLI's evolving role.
Management agrees it needs a more strategic approach to learning, but believes that it will be most effective to develop these strategic approaches within the guidance and business plans for each of the various topics covered by the evaluation. This will ensure stronger ownership by the respective business units.

Action Plans
Action 1
Action 1 Number:
0358-01
Action 1 Title:
Action 1a: Clarify the roles and accountabilities for all aspects of the learning agenda, as defined broadly by the IEG report.
Action 1 Plan:

Action 1a: Clarify the roles and accountabilities for all aspects of the learning agenda, as defined broadly by the IEG report.
Indicator: Informal CODE engagement to clarify roles and accountabilities.
Baseline: Lack of clarity regarding role and accountability for the learning agenda as broadly defined by the IEG report.
Target: An informal CODE briefing organized with key WB stakeholders involved in the learning agenda as broadly defined by IEG.
Timeline: Q2 FY16

Action 2
Action 2 Number:
0358-02
Action 2 Title:
Action 1b: Establish Staff Learning Governance
Action 2 Plan:

Action 1b: Establish Staff Learning Governance
Indicator: Learning governance is operational and effective in addressing its objectives, i.e. 1) align staff learning with business needs; 2) instill strong learning culture; 3) promote informal learning in addition to formal learning; 4) develop a learning platform and ecosystem to support and modernize learning
Baseline: No formal governance for the Staff Learning Agenda.
Target: Specific target to be determined in Q3 FY16, but relating to incentives and alignment of learning with business needs
Timeline: Q4 FY16

Action 3
Action 4
Action 5
Action 6
Action 7
Action 8
2019
IEG Update:
No Updates
Management Update:
No Updates
2018
IEG Update:
No Updates
Management Update:
No Updates
2017
IEG Update:
No Updates
Management Update:
No Updates
2016
IEG Update:

IEG notes the Bank's "intent to develop a consolidated, systemic approach to learning that ties together the many dimensions of learning," and that "new efforts are currently underway to shape the Bank's strategic approach to learning more precisely, including revised governance arrangements and institutional accountabilities...". A self-assessment that shows that the learning agenda is well-defined, and that it gives sufficient weight to the behavioral drivers of learning and knowledge sharing, informal learning and tacit knowledge, incentives for staff learning and development outcomes (including time and budgets), global and local knowledge, and project adaptiveness would be helpful. In addition, a staff survey that shows that there is good understanding among Bank staff about the learning agenda would also be helpful.

Management Update:

***Please see the full update in the attached. ***
On Action 1a, Management provided an informal CODE briefing in November 2015 that clarified roles, responsibilities and governance arrangements for the Learning Agenda, as broadly defined by the IEG report on Learning and Results. Management made clear its intent to develop a consolidated, systemic approach to learning that ties together the many dimensions of learning. Four dimensions were highlighted in particular: (i) Operations - to ensure that we systematically learn from and through all of our operational engagements; (ii) Learning - to ensure that formal and informal learning opportunities are strategic and aligned to business needs; (iii) Human Resources - to ensure that staff mobility is a key driver of the organization's global reach, knowledge and expertise; and (iv) Institutional Oversight - to ensure that independent and external views inform learning at the institutional level. Management also emphasized that this effort will require long-term commitment and phased implementation. Four areas were identified for priority attention.
Establish new Staff Learning governance, with four objectives
align learning with business needs
strengthen incentives for learning
promote use of informal learning in addition to formal learning
develop the ecosystem and infrastructure for learning
Promote optimal use of informal learning and tacit knowledge
capture and disseminate tacit knowledge through library of bite-size learning
adopt and implement a new framework for mentoring
strengthen behavioral skills of staff to promote team learning
Adjust incentives to promote learning and development outcomes
strengthen mobility of staff through adoption of career development framework
improve assessment of project outcomes through better guidance on ICR
strengthen Monitoring ; Evaluation skills of staff through dedicated training
Balance the focus on global and local knowledge
seek systematic client feedback on balance between local and global knowledge
systematically monitor knowledge flows
Promote adaptiveness
systematically learn from implementation and delivery through library of science of delivery cases
With the dissolution of LLI at end-FY16 and recent appointment of a Knowledge Management Director, new efforts are currently underway to shape the Bank's strategic approach to learning more precisely, including revised governance arrangements and institutional accountabilities, while advancing implementation of key elements of the agenda agreed in FY16, including underlying issues of incentives and systems. Much of the latter agenda was explained to the Board during a Board Seminar in June 2016, which emphasized the knowledge management dimensions of the strategic learning approach. Management will provide further updates on the learning agenda in FY17Q3.
On Action 1b, the learning agenda covered in the IEG evaluation spans four areas of World Bank governance, reflecting specialized roles across the four dimensions of learning: (i) Operations Council for learning from operations; (ii) Learning Steering Group for individual and team learning, including client learning; (iii) People Leadership Committee to monitor, discuss and advise on HR issues; and (iv) a variety of governance mechanisms, including the Board of Directors, for Institutional Learning.
***Please see the full update in the attached. ***