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CGD Policy Blogs


A Global Consensus on Reforming IMF Leadership Selection—David Wheeler

When Dominique Straus-Kahn resigned suddenly as head of the International Monetary Fund last May, the world was thrown unexpectedly into search for his successor. Within days, CGD launched a survey of the global development community opinion on three issues: the selection process, criteria for rating the candidates, and ratings for 15 candidates identified in international media.

What Happens When Donors Fail to Meet Their Commitments?

This is a joint post with Rita Perakis.

Has the aid industry introduced the reforms it agreed in 2005 to make aid more effective? No, according to the survey published last week by the OECD DAC. In this blog post we reflect on why this matters, and what it means for the forthcoming summit in Busan.

Related Podcast

A Moveable Feast of Meetings: Owen Barder

The development sector is in a mess. Developing countries have to deal with a large and growing number of partners, each with separate agendas, priorities, and requirements. Meetings, reports, milestones and systems multiply. Skilled staff are hired away from governments and from business to serve in local agency offices or NGOs. Funding is fragmented and unpredictable, which means that developing countries are often unable to bring together the scale of long-term, predictable finance needed to undertake significant institutional reform and service delivery. As just one example - in Vietnam, it took 18 months and the involvement of 150 government workers to purchase just five vehicles for a donor-funded project, because of differences in procurement policies among aid agencies.

B-Span and a Broader Vision of Public Information from the World Bank

This is a joint post with Michele de Nevers.

The World Bank’s expanding public information mandate is the focus of Stephanie Strom’s excellent article in Saturday’s New York Times. During Robert Zoellick’s tenure as the Bank’s president, he has promoted free public access to databases that formerly required a paid subscription, such as the World Development Indicators, or were simply unavailable (such as detailed information on the location, design, objectives and performance of Bank projects). We have no doubt that this excellent initiative will be a boon to development analysts and scholars worldwide.

IMF Leadership Struggle and CGD Survey Results: Nancy Birdsall

The sudden resignation of Dominique Strauss-Kahn has sparked a global debate over the selection of the next head of the International Monetary Fund. French finance minister Christine Legarde, Europe’s nominee, has launched a round-the-world tour to promote her candidacy. Meanwhile, Agustin Carstins, the governor of the Bank of Mexico and the lone challenger so far to Europe’s renewed claim to lead the IMF, is seeking backing from European debtor nations and others by calling for greater flexibility in IMF bailout programs.

Against this background, CGD is pushing ahead with a survey on the selection process, qualifications and candidates for the IMF top job. I asked CGD president Nancy Birdsall, who has been arguing for a more open, merit-based selection process without regard for nationality, to join me on the show to share her views on the IMF leadership selection battle and the initial results from our survey.

Impact Evaluations and the 3ie: William Savedoff

Efforts to design better aid programs often are hampered by the failure to evaluate what works—and what doesn’t—in existing programs. Today, the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation and other important efforts are helping fill the evaluation gap.