Author Archives: WorldBankBlogs

World Bank Group Youth Summit 2016 competition winners announced

Youth Summit competition winners: Shoaib Mehryar and Asif Rasooly of ROYA Mentorship Program and Aline Sara and Alex Weber of NaTakallam 

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Can cash transfers and training reduce intimate partner violence? Learning from Bangladesh

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is the most pervasive form of violence globally—with 1 in 3 women physically or sexually abused by a partner in her lifetime. Despite knowing a lot about prevalence and detrimental impacts of IPV, we are still at the infancy of knowing what works to prevent violence. Recently, development economists have begun exploring the potential of anti-poverty programming, including cash transfers. Cash transfers are a widely used policy tool for decreasing poverty and improving human capital, reaching up to 1 billion people across Latin America, Africa, and Asia. Cash is often given directly to women, thus potentially changing power dynamics within the household

Posted in Aid & Development, Funding, Gender, Poverty, Research, Social, Violence & Conflict | Comments closed

Gender-based violence and HIV infection: Overlapping epidemics in Brazil

One woman is victimized by violence every 15 seconds in Brazil, with a total of 23% of all Brazilian women experiencing violence in their lifetime. There are many notable consequences affecting victims of gender-based violence, yet many health consequences of violence have not been widely addressed in Brazil. This leads to the question: Are victims of gender-based violence at a higher risk for HIV infection in Brazil?  Brazil has 730,000 people living with HIV, the largest number in Latin America and the Caribbean. Brazil is also one of 15 countries that account for 75% of the number of people living with HIV worldwide

Posted in Aid & Development, Gender, Research, Social, Violence & Conflict | Comments closed

Committed to sustainability: Five World Bank corporate actions that support the SDGs

World Bank Corporate Sustainability At the World Bank, we look to lead by example to achieve our goals of ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity in a sustainable way.  This is a longstanding promise recently reconfirmed and reenergized by President Kim in October 2014. And with the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) – 17 goals to be achieved by 2030 – we are linking our own corporate sustainability activities to many of the SDG indicators.

Posted in Aid, Aid & Development, Poverty | Comments closed

The next phase of forest action

© Andrea Borgarello/World Bank Last year, over 100 countries included actions related to land-use change and forests in their nationally determined contributions to fight climate change. At the World Bank, we’re excited to be part of this next phase of forest action. In April 2016, we launched both a Forest Action Plan and Climate Change Action Plan which take a more holistic and ambitious approach to forests. We proposed to focus on investments in sustainable forest management and forest restoration to enhance economic opportunities for people living in and near forests, but also to help countries plan their investments in sectors such as agriculture, energy and transport in a more thoughtful, ‘forest-smart’ manner – to maximize the benefits of their forest assets.

Posted in Aid & Development, Climate Change | Comments closed

World Bank Group Youth Summit 2016 competition finalists announced

Education systems around the world are failing to provide young people with the skills they need to fully realize their potential. The challenges are numerous and complex. If you could solve one educational challenge faced by young people, what would it be?  

Posted in Aid & Development, Women & Children | Tagged | Comments closed

A tale of two disasters: Communities connecting and learning from each other

Community members from Nepal learn how to make paper jewelry crafts from Ibasho-Japan members. (Photo: Margaret Arnold / World Bank) In the aftermath of the earthquake that struck Nepal in April 2015, Santoshi Rana of Bihani, a social venture working with elderly community members in Kathmandu, noticed that many efforts engaged the youth in relief and recovery activities. “Our elderly were completely left out of the equation, and were treated as passive beneficiaries in need of care.” So she took to the Internet to see what resources she could find. She came across a World Bank-Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) report, “Elders Leading the Way to Resilience,” which assessed the impact of Ibasho café, an elder-led recovery effort in Ofunato, Japan, following the Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE) in 2011. Ibasho: a Japanese approach to community resilience In Ofunato, elder community members planned and built the Ibasho Café, which serves as a hub to restore the fabric of a community badly damaged by the GEJE disaster.

Posted in Aging, Aid, Aid & Development, Disaster Relief, Social | Tagged | Comments closed

The data revolution continues with the latest World Bank Innovation challenge

On September 22, 2016, we launched the World Bank Big Data Innovation Challenge – a global call for big data solutions for climate resilience and sustainable development. As the world grows more connected–through mobile phones, social media, internet, satellites, ground sensors and machines—governments and economies need better ways to harness these data flows for insights toward targeted policies and actions that boost climate resilience, especially amongst the most vulnerable. To make this data more useful for development, we need more data innovations and innovative public-private arrangements for data collaboration. The World Bank Big Data Innovation Challenge invites innovators across the world to reimagine climate resilience through big data solutions that address the nexus areas of food security and nutrition, and forests and watersheds – high priority areas of the World Bank’s Climate and Forest Action Plans and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Posted in Aid, Aid & Development, Social, Technology | Tagged | Comments closed

Where do the world’s talents immigrate to?

“We’re the nation that just had six of our scientists and researchers win Nobel Prizes—and every one of them was an immigrant,” U.S. President Barack Obama recently said after the Nobel Prize winners were announced. The Internet was abuzz about it, and how could it not be? The announcement couldn’t come at a better time. Not only are US Nobel laureates immigrants, but also the country has been identified as one of four where the world’s high-skilled immigrants are increasingly living, according to a new World Bank research article

Posted in Aid, Aid & Development, Noncommunicable Disease, Refugees & Immigrants, Research | Tagged | Comments closed

Giving voice to the poor: Adding a human touch to poverty data in South Sudan

We humanize what is going on in the world and in ourselves only by speaking of it, and in the course of speaking of it we learn to be human. –Hannah Arendt We all know that measuring poverty is critical to monitor progress and to tailor effective policy response. But what the numbers mask is the pain and suffering that people go through to make ends meet. Let’s take the case of South Sudan. The country has had a very tumultuous time, witnessing more than its share of a few crises between 2015 and 2016.

Posted in Aid & Development, Monitoring & Evaluation, Poverty, Research, Technology | Tagged | Comments closed

Big data innovation – moving from ideas to implementation

If you want to do something fast, do something that has already been done. If you want to hardwire a data innovation into World Bank Operations, be prepared to involve others in a process of learning by doing.  – Holly Krambeck, Senior Transport Specialist, WBG As the world grows more connected, data flows from a multitude of sources. Mobile networks, social media, satellites, grounds sensors, and machine-to-machine transactions are being used along with traditional data–like household surveys–to improve insights and actions toward global goals.   At the World Bank, a cadre of pioneering economists and sector specialists are putting big data in action

Posted in Aid & Development, Delivery, Policy & Systems, Poverty, Social, Technology | Tagged | Comments closed

“Open in Action” at the World Bank

The 9th annual Open Access Week kicks off this week and this year’s theme of “Open in Action” brings the information community together to celebrate the achievements of accessibility and openness. The World Bank has initiated and contributed to many activities in support of Open Access over the years including: • June 1997 – Launch of Documents and Reports (D&R). Previously known as World Development Sources (WDS), D&R contains more than 240,000 publicly available World Bank documents and enables the sharing of the institution’s extensive knowledge base and operational documents. • April 2010 – Launch of the Open Data Initiative, making World Bank flagship databases and hundreds of other datasets freely available to the public. • July 2010 – Launch of Access to Information Policy (AI), a landmark shift regarding how and which information the World Bank makes available to the public

Posted in Aid, Aid & Development, Publications, Research, Social | Tagged | Comments closed

Why are we blind to human progress and development? Harvard’s Steven Pinker has an…

Harvard’s Steven Pinker paints a hopeful picture with data. He believes a humanitarian revolution has been underway for generations. “Our species has a history of violence,” the renowned psychologist and writer said at the World Bank, but humankind is less violent than it ever has been. We are living through the most peaceful era in history.

Posted in Aid, Aid & Development, Violence & Conflict | Tagged | Comments closed

Invisible wounds: Mental health among displaced people and refugees

The plight of forcibly displaced people, who are fleeing conflict and violence, is best summed up by the lyrics of the plaintive 1970 classic by Argentine troubadour Facundo Cabral:  “No soy de aquí ni soy de allá”(“I’m not from here nor there”). Those lyrics convey both the sense of uprootedness felt by those displaced from their native lands and habitual routines, and the feeling of “otherness,” emotional detachment, and powerlessness when relocated to foreign surroundings and societies, which in some cases, are unwelcoming to outsiders.

Posted in Aid & Development, Mental Health, Noncommunicable Disease, Violence & Conflict | Tagged | Comments closed