The DBR/World Bank credibility drama continues: Eurodad reaction
This is an update on the latest from the World Bank with regards to the scandals surrounding the DBR report.
As you know, on Thursday last week the World Bank announced that it was going to discontinue the Doing Business Report, following the publication of an investigation report that revealed data manipulation and undue pressure in the process by top management - including Kristalina Georgieva, then CEO at the Bank, for countries such as China and Saudi Arabia. Georgieva denied these allegations.
With others, Eurodad celebrated the end of this harmful report as a victory for the economic justice movement.
The news have mostly focused on Kristalina Georgieva's responsibility in the matter, and we know that the IMF Executive Board and Ethical Committee are discussing how to react. Unfortunately, the equally damning responsibility of David Malpass in the scandal, and what this reveals about all other problematic aspects of the WB's work, have had less resonance so far.
However, unusual suspects - voices from the business world, are raising concerns.
Usual suspects and important allies, have however expressed their views, see for instance Martin Ravallion and Paul Romer:
On Monday, the World Bank also published an external review which sheds more light on the deeply flawed methodology surrounding its flagship Doing Business Report (DBR), which encouraged a biased notion of private sector development. The report also raises serious concerns about the governance of the Bank, of which the DBR is just the ‘tip of the iceberg’. This includes conflicts of interest in the WB advisory service, which accepted payment to coach countries on how to improve their scores.
Here you can read Justin Sandefur's (who was in the external review panel) take on the matter.
Here you can read more about the review and Eurodad's reaction. It's also worth noting that the external review panel was composed entirely by academics working in top US universities (so long for inclusion and diversity of point of views), does not mention CSOs previous views at all, nor the words 'human rights'.
We believe that this is a unique opportunity to raise the level of our demands towards the World Bank, and expect fundamental and structural reforms which go right to the top leadership. Do not hesitate to get in touch if you have views on how we should react next.
Chiara Mariotti (PhD)