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Good countries or good projects ? macro and micro correlates of World Bank project performance

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  • Denizer, Cevdet
  • Kaufmann, Daniel
  • Kraay, Aart

Abstract

The authors use data from more than 6,000 World Bank projects evaluated between 1983 and 2009 to investigate macro and micro correlates of project outcomes. They find that country-level"macro"measures of the quality of policies and institutions are very strongly correlated with project outcomes, confirming the importance of country-level performance for the effective use of aid resources. However, a striking feature of the data is that the success of individual development projects varies much more within countries than it does between countries. The authors assemble a large set of project-level"micro"correlates of project outcomes in an effort to explain some of this within-country variation. They find that measures of project size, the extent of project supervision, and evaluation lags are all significantly correlated with project outcomes, as are early-warning indicators that flag problematic projects during the implementation stage. They also find that measures of World Bank project task manager quality matter significantly for the ultimate outcome of projects. They discuss the implications of these findings for donor policies aimed at aid effectiveness.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5646.

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Date of creation: 01 May 2011
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5646

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Related research

Keywords: Housing&Human Habitats; Poverty Monitoring&Analysis; Banks&Banking Reform; Economic Theory&Research; Country Strategy&Performance;

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References

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  1. Axel Dreher & Stephan Klasen & James Raymond Vreeland & Eric Werker, 2010. "The costs of favoritism: Is politically-driven aid less effective?," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 26, Courant Research Centre PEG.
  2. Jonathan Isham & Daniel Kaufmann, 1999. "The Forgotten Rationale For Policy Reform: The Productivity Of Investment Projects," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 149-184, February.
  3. Clausen, Bianca & Kraay, Aart & Murrell, Peter, 2010. "Does respondent reticence affect the results of corruption surveys ? evidence from the world bank enterprise survey for Nigeria," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5415, The World Bank.
  4. Rachid LAAJAJ & Patrick GUILLAUMONT, 2006. "When instability increases the effectiveness of aid projects," Working Papers 200637, CERDI.
  5. Michael Clemens & Steven Radelet & Rikhil Bhavnani, 2004. "Counting Chickens When They Hatch: The Short-term Effect of Aid on Growth," Working Papers 44, Center for Global Development.
  6. Jakob Svensson, 2003. "Who Must Pay Bribes And How Much? Evidence From A Cross Section Of Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 118(1), pages 207-230, February.
  7. Erick Gong, 2011. "HIV Testing and Risky Sexual Behavior," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 1101, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
  8. Benjamin Olken, 2006. "Corruption perceptions vs. corruption reality," Natural Field Experiments 00318, The Field Experiments Website.
  9. Temple, Jonathan R.W., 2010. "Aid and Conditionality," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier.
  10. Kilby, C., 1995. "Supervision and Performance : The Case of World Bank Projects," Discussion Paper, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research 1995-45, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  11. Henrik Hansen & Finn Tarp, 2000. "Aid effectiveness disputed," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(3), pages 375-398.
  12. Dollar, David & Levin, Victoria, 2005. "Sowing and reaping: institutional quality and project outcomes in developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3524, The World Bank.
  13. Chauvet, Lisa & Collier, Paul & Duponchel, Marguerite, 2010. "What explains aid project success in post-conflict situations ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5418, The World Bank.
  14. Wane, Waly, 2004. "The quality of foreign aid : country selectivity or donors incentives?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3325, The World Bank.
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Cited by:
  1. Pritchett, Lant & Samji, Salimah & Hammer, Jeffrey, 2013. "It's All about MeE: Using Structured Experiential Learning ("e") to Crawl the Design Space," Working Paper Series rwp13-012, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  2. Andrews, Matt & Pritchett, Lant & Woolcock, Michael, 2013. "Escaping Capability Traps Through Problem Driven Iterative Adaptation (PDIA)," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 234-244.
  3. Dobronogov, Anton & Gelb, Alan & Saldanha, Fernando Brant, 2014. "How should donors respond to resource windfalls in poor countries ? from aid to insurance," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6952, The World Bank.

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