who will be next World Bank President What will they do


Restoring the credibility of the World Bank, What are your thoughts? ..Its very clear now that the Wolfowitz-Riza affair has dealt considerable damage to the reputation and effectiveness of the World Bank. That is not only the assessment of outsiders, but the assessment of a number of senior officials at the institution itself, as it is clear from the IEG report, and the letter by the governance and anti-corruption group. The question now is what can be done to mitigate that damage moving forward.

Failing to take serious steps to address this issue can hamper the institution moving forward well beyond Wolfowitz and can threaten the very existence of the World Bank.

Here is your chance to express your opinion and give advice to the Bank on what it can, should, and must do to restore its credibility. Use the comments section below to post your thoughts.

A Washington source ~ April 28, 2007


The bank :

1- MUST fire Wolfowitz

2- SHOULD reform itself so it is no longer subject to the political will of whoever is in the white house and the whims of any particular bank president installed to run it.

3- CAN use its staff who proved they are its best asset by standing against Wolfowitz and his cronies to show how the bank has credibility, if not because of its president or board, then because of its staff.

justme ~ April 28, 2007, 05:06 PM

Jeffrey Goldstein, a US national, joined the World Bank as Managing Director in September 1999. In that role, he is a member of the Bank's Management Committee, which is responsible for corporate leadership and strategy. Mr. Goldstein oversees the Bank's work with its client countries in such areas as economic policy and poverty reduction strategies, trade, and financial and capital market systems. He serves as the Bank's point person on the International Development Association (IDA) - which is the Bank's donor-supported arm lending to the poorest countries - and on the debt-reduction initiative for heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC). Mr. Goldstein helps lead the Bank's relationship with the G-8 countries. In addition, he oversees the institution's financial operations and budget.

Pokrok ~ April 28, 2007, 06:42 PM

I agree with Kelly P who posted on the other story at http://www.worldbankpresident.org/archives/000551.php.

The board now has no choice but to fire him by a vote of no confidence. The time for resignation is long gone. Firing him is the minimum first step to restore some semblance of credibility.

Another World Banker ~ April 28, 2007, 07:25 PM

Let him eat his cake as slowly as he wants.

The World Bank as an entity with public accountability suffers from a widening credibility gap. It wants to portray itself as a philanthropic organization and not as the bloated military/industrial juggernaut that it is increasingly perceived to be. Unfortunately, Wolfie's 'whoops' is only the exclamation point on a long-standing culture of nepotism, neocolonial elitism and economic apartheid fostered by its policies.

The current crisis is serendipitous for development aid reform, as the scrutinty it generates will hopefully lead to some deconstruction of what has become a self-serving spin machine that is distrusted and often feared by the developing world.

Restoring credibility? Aside from the political guilloutine for Wolfowitz, a next step might be re-evaluating the rationale for those paradoxical tax-free salaries and various other sweetheart perks for World Bank employees financed by global tax-payers without any accountability . Or would that sink 'corporate' staff morale even lower ? Better to reform now, before the Jacobins gather at the Bastille walls...

mcworld ~ April 28, 2007, 07:41 PM

I was asked to report this on this blog:

We are now in a situation where he has to be fired if the World Bank is to hope to recover its already somewhat tarnished reputation. Resignation is too easy for him and the Board. The first step is for the Board to fire him, and then accept what should have been done a long time ago, recruit the best person for the job. Don't worry about the delay this will cause, Wolfowitz has already caused the entire place to grind to a halt; not just because of these unbelievable recent episodes, but by his careful orchestration of eliminating the best staff the Bank had, and replacing them with his "friends" and by forcing Bush policies onto this institution; we need a stronger Board.

Next step, look into how on earth these multiple staffing irregularities were allowed to happen; assuming even half of what we read is true, then the governance of the Bank needs addressing. There are of course, many other issues related to both this and other staffing and management issues that need reviewing. The fact that the World Bank sits outside legal frameworks leaves the brave staff association with such minimal leverage. So the next step, ensure that these institutions are held to account in a court of law.

I was one of those unfortunate people that had to represent the Bank to developing country Governments over these last few weeks; how ashamed I was, had it not been that I would have left my team down, I would have stayed at home. Can you imagine that consultants and staff alike are so ashamed of this situation that they avoid saying who they work for. All the staff do is talk about when he will go; meanwhile what about the job in hand?

Sack him now, stand up and be counted, that will be the very first step in restoring confidence. Each day lost now makes the job of rebuilding even harder, we all know that. The Europeans will have to fix this.

Kelly P ~ April 28, 2007, 09:12 PM

Not only was Shaha Riza turned down for promotion by the sector board, but Wolfowitz gave promotions against sector board wishes to others as well. Here's one for starters. Seren Juma. Worked for Shaha Riza. Turned down for promotion in summer 2005. Reassigned to Wolfowitz and promoted anyway.

Bill ~ April 28, 2007, 09:49 PM

It's obvious that Wolfowitz has to go.

You cannot campaign against corruption and be openly corrupt at the same time.

It's incredible that it has taken so long to fire Wolfowitz and that he has been given any say in whether he stays or goes.

If there are anti-corruption rules they should be applied openly, transparently and to all... not secretly, selectively or nepotistically.

This is just as bad an example of open, developed world, corruption as the UK government's recent dropping of the investigation into BAE's arms deals with Saudi Arabia.

M Prescott ~ April 29, 2007, 01:01 AM

As you kindly ask: please everyone leap at this chance to get international development back in whack.

The real guts of development is putting in place better systems. A whole huge myriad of them, at every level from simple village stuff through productive enterprises to cities and national infrastructure. In fact good systems will attract far more capital than the Bank can ever provide, and easily take care of that corruption issue now being bandied around.

And the Bank is (sorry guys) neither very good at systems development (other than imposing its own to make the loans work) nor even set up for that purpose.

In fact, specifically set up for that purpose (under the 1970 UN resolution known as the Consensus) was all the rest of the UN: all the technical agencies spread around the world. Never properly funded, though, and less and less well funded as the Bank used its huge financial muscle and the Ministers of Finance to displace, well, all of them, financially and substantively.

The developing world is shot through with lousy low-performing systems as a direct result.

The Bank should go back to what it was intended to be. In other words.... a bank. Let the systems be done by the agencies that know how to do them. Properly funded for a change.

Peter Quennell ~ April 29, 2007, 10:35 PM

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