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Development Economics and the International Development Association

  • Denizer, Cevdet
  • Dethier, Jean-Jacques
  • Gelb, Alan

Prevailing economic ideas -- and fashions -- about development have influenced the International Development Association (IDA) since its creation in 1960. The creation of the organization itself is the result of two contemporaneous facts: an urgent need to channel development finance to least-developed countries and an increasing pressure on World Bank management to directly address the issue of poverty in developing countries. Changing views, over time, have been a rationale -- and, at times, a justification -- for emphasizing poverty and social sectors; for providing grants to particular groups of countries; and for strategic choices and sectoral priorities. IDA has been influential in development debates and been an advocate for specific views about development policy. This paper gives an overview of these views and documents how they have shaped the activities of the organization since its creation. After a brief review of development thinking and of the organization of research at the World Bank, the paper documents the shifts that have taken place in country allocations and in sector emphasis in IDA over the past 50 years and highlights the strategic themes that have guided its development agenda: toward increasing country selectivity; from projects to programs; from conditionality to country ownership of reforms; and from input-based to results-based performance.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5541.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 2011
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5541
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  1. Hansen, Henrik & Tarp, Finn, 2000. "Aid and Growth Regressions," MPRA Paper 62288, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Michael A. Clemens & Charles J. Kenny & Todd J. Moss, 2004. "The Trouble with the MDGs: Confronting Expectations of Aid and Development Success," Working Papers 40, Center for Global Development.
  3. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2003. "Halving Global Poverty," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 3-22, Summer.
  4. Arndt Channing & Jones Sam & Tarp Finn, 2010. "Aid, Growth, and Development: Have We Come Full Circle?," Journal of Globalization and Development, De Gruyter, vol. 1(2), pages 1-29, December.
  5. Eric Zitzewitz & Michael Kremer & Paul Glewwe & Sylvie Moulin, 2004. "Retrospective vs. prospective analyses of school inputs: The case of flip charts in kenya," Natural Field Experiments 00256, The Field Experiments Website.
  6. Sebastian Galiani & Paul Gertler & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2002. "Water for Life: The Impact of the Privatization of Water Services on Child Mortality," Working Papers 54, Universidad de San Andres, Departamento de Economia, revised Sep 2005.
  7. Galasso, Emanuela & Ravallion, Martin, 2005. "Decentralized targeting of an antipoverty program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(4), pages 705-727, April.
  8. Temple, Jonathan R.W., 2010. "Aid and Conditionality," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
  9. Nicholas Stern & Jean-Jacques Dethier & F. Halsey Rogers, 2006. "Growth and Empowerment: Making Development Happen," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262693461, June.
  10. William Easterly & Tobias Pfutze, 2008. "Where Does the Money Go? Best and Worst Practices in Foreign Aid," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(2), pages 29-52, Spring.
  11. de Melo, Martha & Denizer, Cevdet & Gelb, Alan & Tenev, Stoyan, 1997. "Circumstance and choice : the role of initial conditions and policies in transition economies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1866, The World Bank.
  12. Yifu Lin, Justin & Nugent, Jeffrey B., 1995. "Institutions and economic development," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Hollis Chenery & T.N. Srinivasan (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 38, pages 2301-2370 Elsevier.
  13. Sanjay Reddy & Camelia Minoiu, 2009. "Development Aid and Economic Growth; A Positive Long-Run Relation," IMF Working Papers 09/118, International Monetary Fund.
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