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World Bank Group Gender Strategy Mid-Term Review

Report to the Board from the Committee on Development Effectiveness

The Committee on Development Effectiveness met to consider the report entitled World Bank Group Gender Strategy Mid-Term Review: An Assessment by the Independent Evaluation Group and management’s response.

The committee welcomed the Gender Strategy Mid-Term Review (MTR) and deemed it a timely input in light of (i) the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on women and (ii) the increased challenges to progress toward shared prosperity and achievement of the gender-related Sustainable Development Goals. Members commended the strong progress made in terms of the World Bank Group commitment and efforts, and they were pleased to learn about the MTR’s findings on demonstrated commitment to achieve greater gender equality, evidence of good practices, improvements in project design, and increased accountability across the Bank Group. They acknowledged management’s expressed commitment to strengthening synergies across the Bank Group to increase the coherence of country portfolios in addressing gender gaps, further enhancing the use of evidence in operations and in policy dialogue, developing and acknowledging the competencies of staff working on gender, and maintaining corporate monitoring and evaluation of implementation across the Bank Group.

Members encouraged management to implement actions commensurate with the level of ambition of the gender strategy. They asked about specific course corrections aimed to further operationalize the strategy, close gender gaps, mainstream gender ambition into operations, and increase collaboration and synergy across Global Practices and vice presidential units as well as across Bank Group institutions. They stressed the importance of both ensuring that the country-level approach translates priorities into operations to close gender gaps and allocating adequate human and budget resources. Members and nonmembers alike commended management for pioneering initiatives on gender-based violence and encouraged the Bank Group to increase dedicated resources and capacity to ensure enhanced focus on gender-based violence.

Members agreed to the Independent Evaluation Group’s request to advance the disclosure of the MTR so that it could be published by March 8 (International Women’s Day). They suggested that management revise their response to be more robust in incorporating further details on progress to date, achievements, ongoing initiatives, and planned actions to respond to the MTR’s opportunities.