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1 Capacity Development at the World Bank Some thoughts from the Bank Task Force on CD in Africa Mark Nelson, World Bank Institute Member of World Bank.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Capacity Development at the World Bank Some thoughts from the Bank Task Force on CD in Africa Mark Nelson, World Bank Institute Member of World Bank."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Capacity Development at the World Bank Some thoughts from the Bank Task Force on CD in Africa Mark Nelson, World Bank Institute Member of World Bank Task Force on Capacity Development in Africa

2 2 Why the taskforce? Set up in response to demand by World Bank President and Executive Directors Not a typical World Bank report: Focus on wider body of capacity development workby the Bank, other donors and African countries Strong push to extract lessons of good practice wherever they were found and pushing the frontiers of knowledge Importance of building consensus on the findings, particularly in Africa Need to reach a diverse audience: Africa and international community, and within that, the World Bankpart of a larger global effort

3 3 Our approach We have learned from diverse sources: Exhaustive literature review: 150 studies and reports 14 case studies Desk reviews of Benin, Ethiopia, Ghana, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, and Uganda In-depth field studies of Botswana, Burkina, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malaysia and Sri Lanka (the last two for comparison) Six thematic and sectoral reviews: Public financial management; public service reform; health; local governance and decentralization; Regional bodies; Rapid results approaches World Bank review: capacity development portfolio Consultations: African institutions and intellectuals

4 4 1. Why capacity development and why now?

5 5 Capacity: Critical for growth & MDGs Africa lags other regions in growth, human development, MDGs Evidence suggests that capacityskills, incentives, resources, organizational systems, and the rules of the gamematters The capacity of individuals, organizations and institutions to set goals and achieve them The capacity to budget resources and use them for agreed purposes The capacity to manage the complex processes and interactions of a working economic and political system The challenge is to unleash, nurture and retain capacity and create a political environment that encourages participation, excellence, learning and innovation….

6 6 Capacity is the missing link Over the past 15 years… Macroeconomic stability has returned to most countries Social and structural policies have improved Significant improvements in governance and political environments But capacity remains an enduring challenge Skills: availability, utilization and retention Organizational effectiveness Institutional framework

7 7 Why Capacity Now? Africans are setting the pace PRSs, peer review and stronger country ownership offer new opportunities for capacity development Progressive liberalization raises new demands for better governance, better services, decentralization, and regional engagement to preserve peace and security Partners put Africa and capacity at center stage G8: New resources along with good governance UK Commission and UN Millennium Project Africa urgently requires new capacities to govern more complex and open societies…..

8 8 2. Key lessons from the report

9 9 Capable states and engaged societies are critical to achieving results Effective states… Deliver public goods and services Provide an enabling environment for growth and development Ensure peace and security Engaged societies… Participate in public decision-making Contribute to provision of public goods and services Hold authorities accountable

10 10 Effective states and engaged societies are needed to achieve development goals Growth, poverty reduction, peace, empowerment Effective state: Public goods and services Engaged society: Participation, accountability Skills, professionalism Performance, incentives Good governance Capable social actors Information / access Open policy / space

11 11 Capacity development is largely a governance challenge Earlier technocratic approaches to CD tended to ignore link between good governance and policy environment, on one hand, and capacity development and its effective use, on the other Capacity takes root where incentives are favorable, dwindles where incentives are perverse Capacity development means promoting effective states that are responsive and accountable to engaged societies….

12 12 Capacity development requires different paths in different contexts Approaches will vary from country to country depending on: Existing capacity Political and administrative leadership Extent of societal engagement in decision making Countries make the choices of appropriate paths and sequencing No one size fits all…..

13 13 …but good practices can be learned and scaled up Public service reform Public financial management Decentralization Improving the investment climate

14 14 New opportunities, mutual responsibilities African countries Take the lead in CD and aid management Focus on unleashing, nurturing and retaining existing capacity along with better use of local talent and engagement of the Diaspora Place priority on country capacity to develop capacity: local institutions Develop robust monitoring and evaluation with a focus on results External partners Avoid capacity-draining practices like project implementation units and excessive use of external consultants Deliver a higher and more predictable level of support to well designed capacity development initiatives Adapt CD interventions to diverse country circumstances Accept mutual accountability and independent monitoring

15 15 What should be expected of African countries? Defining capacity development as core objective of homegrown strategies Frank diagnosis, including governance constraints, and open review processes Prioritized action with entry points and trajectories explicitly identified Leading aid coordination and alignment of donor support Emphasis on knowledge networks, regional bodies, and peer learning through NEPAD

16 16 What should be expected of international partners? Respect and give space to African leadership Implement Paris Declaration with emphasis on CD Support new areas of capacity development Improve analysis and advice on capacity issues Make aid modalities more capacity sensitive Focus on results Be prepared to finance scaling up

17 17 3. Walking the talk at the World Bank

18 18 Walking the talk: How the Bank should update its approach (1) 1. A stronger country focus for capacity development in Country Assistance Strategies (CAS) and appropriate monitoring frameworks 2. Doing more on the demand side Opening up Bank diagnostic processes (e.g. PERs) to social actors and partners Support transparency and access to performance information (e.g. budgets) Strengthening formal institutions of accountability (e.g. audit agencies) Supporting capacity of social actors to participate 3. Doing business differently Maximum use of country systems Pooling technical assistance and redirecting TA towards capacity development Greater reliance on programmatic instruments Financing of recurrent expenditures, e.g., to allow support of pay reform

19 19 Walking the talk: How the Bank should update its approach (2) 4.Support knowledge institutions and skills Support science and technology Tertiary education 5. Fund more regional and sub-regional initiatives Capacity for delivery of regional public goods Peer learning and review initiatives Develop vertical instruments for grant funding through African intermediaries 6.Strengthen the results focus of capacity development work Further innovation in the benchmarking of capacity development Greater investment in country M&E systems More independent monitoring of performance of all partners 7. Provide strong management leadership within the Bank Focal points for coordination in capacity development Improve staff skills and incentives Strengthen knowledge management and learning

20 20 Capacity: What is it in Bank operations? Input side: training, technical assistance (consultants), equipment (roughly $1 billion a year at the Bank) Workshops, seminars, study tours South-South exchanges (Shanghai) Computers, air conditioners(?), buildings(??)…. Results side: much broader range of outcomes are sought Improved policies, incentive systems Improved performance of key organizational structures Higher skills and knowledge of key personnel Project management side: getting the job done, by-passing local bureaucracies PMUs/PIUs Improved incentives, salaries for staff of PMUs Not surprisingly, capacity development or institution building is claimed as development objective of close to three-fourths of Bank projects.

21 21 But project design rarely reflects clear capacity development focus Capacity inputs are not clearly spelled out or costed Target of intervention is not clear Links between inputs and CD goals is not clear Benchmarks are not established Indicators do not show intermediate steps or even end goals PMUs and external consultants are the norm

22 22 A proposal: focus on organizations Organizations are the key building blocks of country action Individual effectiveness is defined and enhanced by high performing organizations Organizations can be major players in changing the overall environment, incentive systems and institutions

23 23 What does organizational focus mean? Targeting organizational outputs, not inputs Good diagnostics to understand the context Can needed changes be implemented? Can operation be successful given context? Benchmarks to define current outputs, performance level What level of performance is being sought? Are there normslocal, internationalthat can be agreed? Indicators for intermediate steps and long-term goals

24 24 Why we stand a better chance now A new context: More international focus on the capacity issue, new resources A new set of leaders and democratic change in some key countries, NEPAD and other regional efforts The Paris Declaration: a renewed focus on capacity development with specific targets … but this agenda requires leadership, management focus, new incentives and resources in the World Bank

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