WBI Development Studies

22 items available

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These studies, sponsored by the World Bank Institute (WBI), seek to improve the understanding and capacity for reform of policymakers and practitioners in developing countries in the main economic and social areas.

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Now showing 1 - 10 of 22
  • Publication
    Knowledge, Technology, and Cluster-Based Growth in Africa
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2008) Zeng, Douglas Zhihua
    Although Africa is falling behind in today's global economic race, it holds pockets of vital economic activity -- many in the form of enterprise clusters scattered across the continent's countries and industries. By clustering, enterprises are able to overcome constraints in capital, skills, technology, and markets. Enterprise clusters help their constituents grow and compete by encouraging more effective knowledge and technology diffusion and product specialization, leveraging local comparative advantage, fostering production value chains, and achieving collective efficiency. In so doing, they contribute significantly to Africa's economic growth. They provide jobs for the continent's growing population, thus enabling families not only to survive, but also to educate their children and perhaps move out of poverty. But in today's increasingly knowledge-intensive and globalized economy, these clusters also face serious challenges in the areas of technology, natural resources, infrastructure, skill acquisition, and quality control. This book aims to provide an understanding of how these dynamic enterprise clusters in Africa were formed and have evolved, and how knowledge, human capital, and technology have contributed to their success.
  • Publication
    Legislative Oversight and Budgeting : A World Perspective
    (Washington, DC : World Bank, 2008) Stapenhurst, Rick; Pelizzo, Riccardo; Olson, David M.; von Trapp, Lisa
    Effective legislatures are fundamental to promoting good governance and are a critical component in a country's overall governance framework. Although differences exist across government systems, legislatures, through their constitutional mandates, fulfill three core functions: representation, lawmaking, and oversight. Governance goals of greater accountability, transparency, and participation are directly related to these three functions. Legislative oversight in particular seeks to ensure that the executive and its agencies, or those to whom authority is delegated, remain responsive and accountable. This volume looks at oversight as a continuous and ongoing cycle. Legislatures may examine government policies as they are being developed or work to ensure that programs are implemented and administered efficiently, effectively, and in a manner consistent with legislative intent. In addition, this book highlights the important opportunities provided for oversight during the budget cycle. At the same time, the authors recognize the many factors and incentives legislators face that may assist or impede them in playing their oversight role.
  • Publication
    Knowledge and Innovation for Competitiveness in Brazil
    (Washington, DC : World Bank, 2008) Rodríguez, Alberto; Dahlman, Carl; Salmi, Jamil
    Brazil has made considerable progress toward macroeconomic stability since reform measures began to take hold in the early 1990s, and its economy has produced stronger growth as a result an average of 2.5 percent annually over the past decade. This study provides a broad, cross-sectoral analysis of Brazil's capacity for producing knowledge and innovation. As such, it moves beyond the traditional recommendation that is, builds a stable macroeconomic environment and business-friendly physical and policy infrastructure and instead seeks a more comprehensive approach. The fact is that Brazil has delivered some important successes with efforts to develop innovation in agriculture, aerospace and energy. But like other middle-income nations, it is discovering that it must re-evaluate its education system, its information technology infrastructure, and its policy framework for encouraging innovation to ensure that its economy as a whole is growing fast enough to keep up with the global competition while also guaranteeing progress in its fight against poverty. This study was developed in close consultation with Brazilian government and civil society leaders, who are deeply engaged with the question of how to foster innovation and greater economic competitiveness. Indeed, the breadth of the support for this study is a testament to Brazil's pragmatism and perseverance in pursuing more robust growth. It is also a welcome reflection of its continually evolving relationship with the World Bank. Today, Brazil has emerged as a leader of efforts to build South-South cooperation. In this role, it can set an important example for other middle-income nations and act as a bridge between the northern and southern hemispheres.
  • Publication
    Improving Municipal Solid Waste Management in India : A Sourcebook for Policy Makers and Practitioners
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2008) Zhu, Da; Zurbrügg, Chris; Anapolsky, Sebastian
    Human activities create waste, and the ways that waste is handled, stored, collected, and disposed of can pose risks to the environment and to public health. Solid waste management (SWM) includes all activities that seek to minimize health, environmental, and aesthetic impacts of solid waste. In urban areas, especially in the rapidly urbanizing cities of the developing world, problems and issues of municipal solid waste management (MSWM) are of immediate importance. This book addresses the problem by focusing on India. A country such as India, with its high economic growth and rapid urbanization, requires immediate solutions to the problems related to mismanagement of urban waste. City managers are actively trying to understand the problem and are seeking effective ways of intervening. They realize that such interventions are essential to improving the quality of their cities and to reducing adverse health and environmental impacts. For cities to be sustainable and to continue their economic development, they must be clean and healthy. They need to improve their SWM systems by adopting good collection coverage, appropriate transfer methods, and healthy disposal practices.
  • Publication
    Mexico's Transition to a Knowledge-Based Economy : Challenges and Opportunities
    (Washington, DC : World Bank, 2008) Kuznetsov, Yevgeny; Dahlman, Carl J.
    This book is about how Mexico can transform itself into a knowledge based economy by tapping into a number of existing socioeconomic advantages: macroeconomic stability, emerging regional enterprise clusters that combine local talent with a dynamic private sector, geographical proximity to the world's knowledge economy powerhouse-the United States, as well as a rich cultural base that generates a wealth of ideas. Mexico's transition to a knowledge-based economy provides a broad assessment of the country's readiness to join the global knowledge economy, highlighting the importance of education and institutional reform, and of creating an environment that is conducive to innovation. This transformation, however, is not only about shaping the reform agenda from the top down. It also means trial-and-error experimentation to test what works and what doesn't in the Mexican context, and then taking successful bottom-up initiatives to scale. The book takes a dual approach in its analysis and recommendations. It tackles both the strategic long-term agenda, which entails many difficult changes and choices, while also proposing a diversity of pragmatic, short-and medium-term entry points to initiate and promote the transition within the current institutional structure.
  • Publication
    Establishing Private Health Care Facilities in Developing Countries : A Guide for Medical Entrepreneurs
    (2007) Nah, Seung-Hee; Osifo-Dawodu, Egbe
    This book is a practical guide for medical professionals who are interested in establishing health care facilities in developing countries. It is intended for individuals and organizations with little or no business experience who are seeking guidance on how to turn a general idea into concrete reality. The author's goals in writing the book were modest. The guide does not provide an exact roadmap for building a hospital or other type of health care facility, nor is there any guarantee that the new entrepreneur who follows the approach described will be able to obtain financing from investors. Rather, the book is designed as an introductory resource with which to begin the process.
  • Publication
    Korea as a Knowledge Economy : Evolutionary Process and Lessons Learned
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2007) Suh, Joonghae; Chen, Derek H. C.
    This report on Korea is geared towards policy makers from developing countries that are in the midst of, or are intending to, embark on the transition towards the knowledge economy. It provides pragmatic policy lessons drawn from Korea's forty-five years of knowledge-based growth. This report not only looks at the current policies and challenges of today's high income Korea, but also reviews its historical economic development since the 1960s when Korea was still a low income country. It follows Korea through the decades as it undertook an array of knowledge strategies that propelled it through the various income levels. This report therefore provides compelling policy lessons that are relevant for developing countries at different stages of economic development.
  • Publication
    Enhancing China's Competitiveness Through Lifelong Learning
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2007) Dahlman, Carl; Zhihua Zeng, Douglas; Wang, Shuilin
    This study emphasizes that in response to demands for wider access and better quality of education, and to achieve economies of scale and leverage limited resources, China needs to develop a more integrated system of education and training with appropriate bridges and interfaces among its various constituents. This book outlines the key elements of such a system, focusing primarily on its economic aspects. It presents a framework to help identify and understand the demands being placed on the education and training system and the services that various education providers can supply, highlighting several policy approaches to building an effective and efficient lifelong learning system. These include changing the role of government from being the main provider of education and training to being the architect, facilitator, and rule-keeper for a more inclusive system. In this scenario, government would ensure quality, relevance, efficiency, and equity through sound accreditation, assessment, and vocational qualification systems, stronger linkages with the labor market, partnerships with nongovernmental players, and better resource allocation and financial aid programs. It would also provide information services for all stake-holders, develop an education finance market, tap into private resources to meet the increasing demand for education and training, and harness the potential of distance education.
  • Publication
    Social Health Insurance for Developing Nations
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2007) Hsiao, William C.; Shaw, R. Paul; Fraker, Andrew; Hanvoravongchai, Piya; Jowett, Matthew; Pinto, Diana; Ramachandra, Sreekanth
    Good health is necessary for well-being but also has another critical impact: it causes poverty, in that large health expenditures can bankrupt families. Many nations are now hoping that formally mandated social health insurance (SHI), involving payroll taxes, will provide a solution. This report examines the principles, design, and practices of SHI for low and middle-income nations and the necessary conditions for its viability and sustainability, with a focus on design and implementation issues. This volume presents five country case studies to provide evidence and greater detail on key issues that arise at different stages of implementation in low-income countries. They have been selected to reflect on a continuum and timeline of operational stages, beginning with the initial design and legislation of SHI, the first phase of implementation, the expansion to cover larger segments of the population, and on up to completion, whereby SHI becomes the predominant form of health care financing in a country. Accordingly, Kenya has been selected for illustration of the design stage, Ghana for initiation, the Philippines for extension of population coverage, Colombia for SHI and reform of health care delivery, and Thailand for universal coverage and reform of health care delivery. This sequencing and implied timeline of case studies allows this report to reflect on two questions. First, where can a country expect to be in relation to designing and implementing SHI in, say, 10 years? Second, as countries gain experience with SHI, what can they expect to offer or achieve in terms of variations in benefit design, who administers SHI, and how providers are contracted and paid?
  • Publication
    Building Knowledge Economies : Advanced Strategies for Development
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2007) World Bank
    Knowledge has always been an essential force in economic development. Chapter one, describes the knowledge revolution, which is leading us into a postindustrial age in which brains, not brawn, are the best means of coping with intensified competition and new challenges, including those related to human development and the global environment. In explaining the foundations and the model of knowledge economies, chapter two outlines the four knowledge economies (KE) pillars, provides elements of the benchmarking methodology, and relates KE achievements to recorded growth and competitiveness. To understand the KE process, chapter three starts with the examples of three KE champions, Finland, Ireland, and the Republic of Korea. The ensuing chapters examine and document in detail the four KE policy pillars. Chapter four on the economic and institutional regime discusses governance, regulation, finance, and trade as they bear on the KE development process. Chapter five on innovation addresses the question of support for innovators, the strengthening of research and technology infrastructure, the diffusion of basic technologies, and the promotion of specific industries. Chapter six deals with the national information and communication technology (ICT) infrastructure, addressing related applications, institutions, and regulations, as well as access to that infrastructure and the development of the skills needed to build, maintain, and use it. Chapter seven looks at primary and secondary education, higher education, and lifelong learning from a KE perspective, providing insights on the mobility of human resources and the role of diasporas. Chapter eight discusses policy agendas for selected sets of countries.