Supporting economic development

Improving gender outcomes for regional trade programmes

Global trade and regional integration have gender-specific outcomes: in developing countries and specifically in South Asia, women do not have the same access as men to benefits of trade. This report reviews the gender outcomes of trade and describes policies and initiatives tackling the three main gender-based barriers to benefiting from trade: (i) sociocultural norms, (ii) ...» more

Economic drivers and effects of the illegal wildlife trade in Sub Saharan Africa

The drivers behind the illegal wildlife trade (IWT) in Sub Saharan Africa are varied and complex; varying over time and from one location or sector to another, and depending on the type of commodities and crime involved. Therefore caution should be taken when discussing these drivers. Broadly, the main economic drivers behind the IWT in Sub Saharan Africa include: increasing ...» more

Impact of economic sanctions on poverty and economic growth

Key findings are as follows: Economic sanctions lead to an increase in the poverty gap and deprived sections of the population feel the most impact. For the most part sanctions fail to achieve their aims and elites manage to negotiate the adverse effects to a far greater level than poorer citizens. Sanctions have a damaging effect on income inequality and impact ...» more

Human rights and governance provisions in OECD country trade agreements with developing countries

Trade agreements increasingly feature governance and human rights provisions. Countries taking the lead in this are the United States and Canada (the EU was not covered in this review). However, they tend to be selective in their provisions, focusing in particular on labour rights, transparency and anti-corruption, as well as public participation and intellectual property ...» more

Role of business in tackling modern slavery in supply chains

Key findings: Not much research has been done on business supply chain management and modern slavery: The available literature is extremely limited. Pressures on companies to tackle modern slavery in supply chains are increasing: These include growing consumer concerns about the issue, fears of reputational damage, the potential for companies to charge more for ‘slave ...» more

Urban governance

Seoul sunrise panorama

What is urban governance and why does it matter? How can key urban policy issues be addressed? This topic guide introduces the literature on urban governance and its relationship to growth and poverty reduction. It considers the key debates and issues, and sets out some implications for practice on specific urban governance challenges. ...» more

Governance, politics and growth

In recent years, there has been an increasing realisation that political institutions and governance matter when explaining economic growth in developing countries. Here, political institutions refer to the process of collective decision-making and the checks on politicians and politically and economically powerful interest groups. Governance refers to the capability of the state to provide public…» more

Taxation, governance and growth

Historically, tax research has been dominated by two questions: how to enhance revenue collection in order to finance redistribution and public goods and services, and how to design tax policy to strengthen incentives for economic growth (Joshi et al. 2014; Moore 2013).  However, the past decade has witnessed surging interests in a third possibility: that…» more

Innovating for pro-poor services: Why politics matter

Nathaniel Mason, Clare Cummings, and Julian Doczi

This paper argues that politics is a major factor that can interact with innovations, with positive or negative implications for services for poor people and achievement of related sustainable development goals targets. The key question it seeks to address is, ‘How do innovation and politics interrelate when it comes to providing services for poor people, and what are the ...» more

Meaningful community engagement in the extractive industries

Emma Wilson; Sarah Best; Emma Blackmore; Saule Ospanova

What is the relationship between extractive industry projects and the local communities living in close proximity to such projects? Stakeholder engagement is central to extractive industry companies securing a social licence to operate. While there is lots of guidance on how to do stakeholder engagement well, this paper draws attention to the major implementation challenges ...» more

World Development Report 2016: Digital Dividends

World Bank

The digital revolution has brought easier communication and information, greater convenience, free digital products, and new forms of leisure.  However, digital dividends have had much less impact on global productivity, expansion of opportunity and the spread of accountable governance than once expected.  This report argues that improving digital dividends requires digital ...» more

Economic impacts of humanitarian aid

This review argues that few studies look at all aspects of economic impact of humanitarian aid. Individual studies tend to focus on one or two specific effects (e.g. on food inflation) rather than give an overall perspective of economic impact. The exception is humanitarian aid given in response to the recent Syria crisis, for which a number of studies look at a wide range of ...» more

The politics of governing oil effectively: A comparative study of two new oil-rich states in Africa

Sam Hickey, Abdul-Gafaru Abdulai, Angelo Izama and Giles Mohan

This paper challenges the mainstream understanding that the quality of institutions within resource-rich countries is the key to how successfully they will manage to avoid the ‘resource curse’. While this understanding would expect democratic Ghana to more effectively and accountably manage its oil than semi-authoritarian Uganda, the findings of this paper suggest otherwise. ...» more

Growth and income inequality effects on poverty: The case of Pakistan (1988 –2011)

Haroon Jamal

This study scrutinizes Pakistan’s statistics on growth, poverty and inequality in terms of poverty decomposition into growth and distribution components and assessment of growth in terms of its distributional neutrality with the help of widely-used statistical tools. Decomposition of poverty into growth and inequality components answers the question of what poverty outcomes ...» more

The impact of private sector internship and training on urban youth in Kenya

Maddalena Honorati

This paper evaluates the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) and the Government of Kenya with support from the World Bank’s Kenya Youth Empowerment Project (KYEP) training and internship pilot programme for vulnerable youths between the ages of 17 and 29 years old who were out of school and/or had no permanent job in the previous year. It finds it has had overall significant ...» more

Fossil fuels are dead, long live fossil fuels: Botswana’s options for economic diversification.

Ross Harvey

Botswana is at a critical historical juncture. It has enjoyed a stable democracy since 1965 and strong, quality economic growth for the last few decades.  However, the diamond revenues on which the country depends are likely to decline in the near future. This report examines how Botswana can best harness it's ample fossil fuel supply for regional energy security at the least ...» more

Resource discovery and conflict in Africa: what do the data show?

Rabah Arezki, Sambit Bhattacharyya & Nemera Mamo

Africa is often viewed as the prime location for natural resource driven conflict. The volume of research on this topic is sizeable. Yet establishing causality remains a challenge. This paper uses geocoded data on oil and mineral discoveries to study the effect of natural resources on conflict at the local level (1946-2008). It seeks to fill the gap on research which has used ...» more