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The Missing Middle: addressing income inequality is the next challenge for the Philippines as it approaches UMIC status

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The Missing Middle: addressing income inequality is the next challenge for the Philippines as it approaches UMIC status
How the World Bank Group can build on previous successful engagements to achieve results that go beyond growth numbers.How the World Bank Group can build on previous successful engagements to achieve results that go beyond growth numbers.

Not just what, but how: a strong delivery system was key to the success of the Philippines’ nationwide social protection program

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Not just what, but how: a strong delivery system was key to the success of the Philippines’ nationwide social protection program
Effective system identifies beneficiaries and delivers cash transfers in a regular and reliable way.Effective system identifies beneficiaries and delivers cash transfers in a regular and reliable way.

Mexico CLR Review FY14-19

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This review of Mexico’s Completion and Learning Review (CLR) of the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covers the CPS period FY14-FY19 and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) of January 26, 2017. Mexico is an upper-middle-income country with a gross national income (GNI) per capita (in current US$) of US$9,180 in 2018. During 2014-18, the average annual GDP growth rate Show MoreThis review of Mexico’s Completion and Learning Review (CLR) of the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covers the CPS period FY14-FY19 and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) of January 26, 2017. Mexico is an upper-middle-income country with a gross national income (GNI) per capita (in current US$) of US$9,180 in 2018. During 2014-18, the average annual GDP growth rate was 2.2 percent in a show of resilience in the face of a complex external environment. In the first half of 2019, economic growth came to a virtual halt owing to policy uncertainty, tight monetary conditions and budget under-execution as well as slowing global manufacturing activity. Over the longer term, Mexico’s economic growth has been below the level needed to converge toward advanced country economies. The country’s per capita GDP, which is closely related to productivity, stands at 34 percent of U.S. per capita GDP compared with 49 percent in 1980.2 Poverty rates (share of individuals living on less than the 2011 PPP US$1.90 per day poverty line) fell from 3.8 percent of the population in 2016 to 2.2 percent in 2016. There was a small decline in the Gini index from 48.7 percent in 2014 to 48.3 in 2016. IEG’s Country Program Evaluation for Mexico (2018) indicates that Mexico’s multidimensional poverty index for the extremely poor fell from 11.3 percent in 2010 to 7.6 percent in 2016, helping reduce the overall index from 46.1 percent to 43.6 percent. At the same time, income growth of the bottom 40 percent was below the population mean.

Evaluation of the World Bank’s Support to Improving Child Undernutrition and Its Determinants (Approach Paper)

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Global reports on indicators of child undernutrition show mixed progress in reducing the stunting (impaired growth and development) of children under five, with Africa and South Asia most severely affected. There are many determinants of child undernutrition, which makes the challenge of improving outcomes multidimensional, requiring interventions in areas of health; agriculture; water, Show MoreGlobal reports on indicators of child undernutrition show mixed progress in reducing the stunting (impaired growth and development) of children under five, with Africa and South Asia most severely affected. There are many determinants of child undernutrition, which makes the challenge of improving outcomes multidimensional, requiring interventions in areas of health; agriculture; water, sanitation, and hygiene; social protection; education; and governance, depending on the country context. The objectives of this evaluation are to assess the contribution of the World Bank to improving outcomes related to child undernutrition and its determinants in countries affected by undernutrition, and to provide lessons and recommendations to inform the design of the World Bank’s future multidimensional nutrition support.

Mongolia: Governance Assistance Project (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates the Governance Assistance Project (GAP) of the International Development Association (IDA) in Mongolia (P170780). The project was approved in March 2006 in the amount of special drawing rights 9.7 million (equivalent to US$14 million), funded by an IDA grant. Following two extensions, it closed on December 31, 2014. This assessment aims Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates the Governance Assistance Project (GAP) of the International Development Association (IDA) in Mongolia (P170780). The project was approved in March 2006 in the amount of special drawing rights 9.7 million (equivalent to US$14 million), funded by an IDA grant. Following two extensions, it closed on December 31, 2014. This assessment aims to review whether and how the operation achieved its intended objectives. The PPAR also examines the long-term sustainability of GAP support, such as the extent to which the GAP’s main achievements have been sustained more than four years since the project’s closure. This report provides additional evidence and analysis of relevant data for a more complete picture of the project outcomes and the factors that influenced them. By reviewing developments from 2014 to 2019 (after the project closed), it offers an opportunity for a longer-term perspective on the factors affecting outcomes. Ratings for this project are as follows: Outcome as satisfactory, risk to development outcome was modest, bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. This PPAR offers the following lessons: (i) In a low-capacity environment, introduction of basic technical solutions and application of incremental step-by-step reforms can be an effective strategy. (ii) Implementation risks related to project complexity and multiple government implementing agencies can be successfully managed if there is strong leadership from the core government agency (such as the Ministry of Finance) and an experienced and empowered Project Coordination Unit. (iii) Technical assistance projects with multisectoral coverage require significant supervision support. Lack of budget can limit the ability of the World Bank to provide the specialized technical inputs needed to help the client make better design and implementation choices.

Morocco: First and Second Transparency and Accountability Development Policy Loan (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses two International Bank for Reconstruction and Development loans (First and Second Transparency and Accountability Development Policy Loans, known as Hakama 1 and 2) made to Morocco during 2013–16 and totaling approximately $407 million. The first operation was approved in October 2013 and the second in October 2015. The European Union and Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses two International Bank for Reconstruction and Development loans (First and Second Transparency and Accountability Development Policy Loans, known as Hakama 1 and 2) made to Morocco during 2013–16 and totaling approximately $407 million. The first operation was approved in October 2013 and the second in October 2015. The European Union and the African Development Bank provided parallel financing in the form of budget support; the European Union and World Bank also provided technical assistance. The development objectives of the loans were to strengthen mechanisms promoting transparency and accountability in the management of public resources, and to support legal reforms fostering open governance in Morocco in line with the new Constitution. Ratings are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development was substantial, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lesson from these projects include: (i) Improved knowledge management and better use of knowledge enhance operational quality. (ii) Monitoring and evaluation require attention both at the design stage and during implementation. (iii) Greater transparency and better information management are needed to sustain dialogue as World Bank teams and counterparts change. (iv) It would be helpful to assess a cluster of mutually reinforcing World Bank operations jointly.

The World Bank Group Partnership with the Philippines, 2009–18

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The World Bank Group Partnership with the Philippines, 2009–18 Country Program Evaluation
This Country Program Evaluation (CPE) assesses the development effectiveness of the World Bank Group program in the Philippines between 2009 and 2018.This Country Program Evaluation (CPE) assesses the development effectiveness of the World Bank Group program in the Philippines between 2009 and 2018.

Ukraine: First and Second Programmatic Financial Sector Development Policy Loan (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report evaluates a programmatic series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Ukraine of $500 million each that were provided as part of an urgent international effort to assist the country when Ukraine’s financial sector teetered on the edge of collapse in 2014. A perfect storm had affected the financial system when the geopolitical situation had descended Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report evaluates a programmatic series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Ukraine of $500 million each that were provided as part of an urgent international effort to assist the country when Ukraine’s financial sector teetered on the edge of collapse in 2014. A perfect storm had affected the financial system when the geopolitical situation had descended into deep crisis arising from the Euromaidan political upheaval, the Russian Federation’s annexation of Crimea, and the armed separatist movement in the eastern part of the country that initiated open, armed conflict that at times resembled a full-scale war. The exchange rate virtually halved between the end of 2013 (Hrv 8.13 to 1 U.S. dollar) and the end of 2014 (Hrv 15.8 to 1 U.S. dollar), inflation accelerated to 24 percent, the public sector fiscal deficit exceeded 10 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), and public debt—including guarantees—spiked to 70 percent of GDP. Ratings for the First and Second Programmatic Financial Sector Development Policy Loan are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was high, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the projects include: (i) Close coordination among donors is critical for DPLs to maximize the effectiveness of a jointly designed reform program. (ii) The design of DPLs needs to focus on all relevant issues, potential weaknesses, and gaps in reform measures. (iii) The presence of task teams in the field can be a critical factor in promoting financial sector reform. (iv) Weak public understanding of financial sector reforms indicates a need to expand outreach efforts to enhance political sustainability. (v) Sustainable reform is difficult to achieve in countries that have corrupt power structures and court systems. Under such circumstances, it is an open question whether World Bank assistance risks providing additional resources for rent seeking rather than support for reforms.

Indonesia: Community-based Settlement Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Project for Central and West Java and Yogyakarta Special Region (PPAR)

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The government of Indonesia committed approximately $600 million to fund the reconstruction and rehabilitation of approximately 255,000 homes in the earthquake-affected areas. Several development partners also contributed funds for a significantly smaller reconstruction initiative. At the government’s request, the World Bank used these additional contributions to create a recipient-executed Java Show MoreThe government of Indonesia committed approximately $600 million to fund the reconstruction and rehabilitation of approximately 255,000 homes in the earthquake-affected areas. Several development partners also contributed funds for a significantly smaller reconstruction initiative. At the government’s request, the World Bank used these additional contributions to create a recipient-executed Java Reconstruction Fund (JRF). The World Bank used the JRF’s resources to create the Community-Based Settlement Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Project (CSRRP) for Central and West Java and Yogyakarta Special Region. The CSRRP’s objective was to assist in meeting the needs of eligible households for earthquake-resistant housing and community infrastructure in the affected areas. These objectives were to be achieved through a community-based approach in which beneficiaries would have a major role in decision-making about reconstruction of their homes and the construction of their communities’ infrastructure. Ratings for the Community-based Settlement Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Project (CSRRP) are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development are modest, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Key lessons from the experience of the project include the following: (i) A community-based approach to postdisaster reconstruction can be effective and efficient in a context in which there is prior experience and existing institutions and cultural norms that favor it. (ii) Careful attention is essential in deciding who will be assisted financially in reconstructing homes, the amount of assistance to be provided, and the perceived effects and consequences of these decisions. (iii) The disaster resilience of project-provided housing can be undermined by subsequent expansion or enlargement of the housing. (iv) Community settlement or similar development plans may not meaningfully support disaster risk reduction unless these plans meet several essential conditions. (v) Women’s participation in community-driven development is a challenge to ensure when their interests, experiences, and perspectives are not properly considered in a project’s design, for example, through a gender analysis that identifies potential opportunities and obstacles to their meaningful participation in decision-making.

Philippines CLR Review FY15-19

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The Philippine economy has been growing rapidly over the past decade. However, performance on poverty reduction, inequality and human development has been persistently low. The country is also a natural disaster hotspot, with frequent typhoons, tropical storms and earthquakes. It has also been affected by internal unrest, predominantly the protracted conflict and violence on the southern island Show MoreThe Philippine economy has been growing rapidly over the past decade. However, performance on poverty reduction, inequality and human development has been persistently low. The country is also a natural disaster hotspot, with frequent typhoons, tropical storms and earthquakes. It has also been affected by internal unrest, predominantly the protracted conflict and violence on the southern island of Mindanao. The 2014 Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) was well aligned with the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2011-16 that aimed at reducing poverty and improving the lives of the poorest segments of the population. The subsequent PDP 2017-22 shifted some emphasis to major infrastructure investments – where the WBG has not been particularly active – but also seeks to lift about six million citizens from poverty, achieve upper-middle income status by 2022, and to deliver a comprehensive agenda for peace and development in conflict-affected areas. The WBG program as adjusted in the 2017 PLR was therefore well aligned with significant aspects of the current PDP. The CPS set out a program that was divided in five focus areas: Transparent and Accountable Government; Empowerment of the Poor and the Vulnerable; Rapid, Inclusive and Sustained Economic Growth; Climate Change, Environment, and Disaster Risk Management; and Peace, Institution-Building, and Social and Economic Opportunity – all these areas were of high priority for the country and under the PDP.