Inside the World Bank: Exploding the Myth of the Monolithic Bank

Hardcover | August 15, 2009

byYi-chong Xu

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This book challenges the common view that the World Bank can be seen as a single player in world politics. Its critics credit it with common views and an over-riding neo-liberal philosophy, which it imposes on unwilling countries. We argue that the Bank, far from being a unitary actor, is fundamentally plural, internally fragmented and dispersed, with cascading chains of delegation, authority and controls, and with considerable discretion delegated to the staff. There are management dilemmas that ensure internal variations of opinion and approach are an inevitable part of its activities.  Bank staff are important players in shaping the operation of the Bank; they have scope for creativity in the selection of the development programs and projects the Bank undertakes in the client/partner countries. To understand the Bank it is necessary to appreciate how it works and what impact the staff can have.

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This book challenges the common view that the World Bank can be seen as a single player in world politics. Its critics credit it with common views and an over-riding neo-liberal philosophy, which it imposes on unwilling countries. We argue that the Bank, far from being a unitary actor, is fundamentally plural, internally fragmented and...

Xu Yi-chong is Professor of Politics in the Centre for Governance and Public Policy at Griffith University. Xu is author of Powering China (2002) and Electricity Reform in China, India and Russia (2004) and is now working on issues of energy security and nuclear power in China and India. Together with her co-author, Xu wrote The Gover...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.75 inPublished:August 15, 2009Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230616720

ISBN - 13:9780230616721

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Inside the World Bank * Chapter 2 Mandates * Chapter 3 Politics and Management * Chapter 4 Regions and Sectors * Chapter 5 Centralisation and Decentralisation * Chapter 6 Research in DEC and in Operations * Chapter 7 Self- and External Evaluation * Chapter 8 Governance: Political, not Politics * Chapter 9 Electric Power * Chapter 10 A Life at the World Bank

Editorial Reviews

“Providing a rich description of many aspects of the World Bank, with details on internal operations that specialists may value, the authors posit that the World Bank is not well described by conventional principal-agent or bureaucratic models. Summing Up: Recommended.”--Choice