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    Agriculture for Nutrition in Latin America and the Caribbean : From Quantity to Quality
    (Washington, DC, 2014-03) World Bank ; Inter-American Institute for Agriculture Cooperation
    The Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region has been in many ways successful in increasing agriculture production and competitiveness, as well as tackling nutrition. Mainstreaming nutrition considerations into agriculture operations can increase the availability of and access to nutritious food, which can improve the nutrition status of individuals. The challenge is how to bridge the gap that exists in region between being an agriculture powerhouse and yet having to tackle nutrition problems from the same households that produce the food. The new challenge of integrating nutrition and agriculture should be achievable with political leadership and inter-institutional coordination. This guidance note seeks to bridge some of the important knowledge gaps on how best to identify, design, implement, monitor, and evaluate agriculture and food security interventions. This note describes first the current situation in LAC with respect to agriculture and nutrition, then offers practical guidance to task team leaders (TTLs) regarding the available levers for positively impacting nutrition outcomes of agriculture projects, and presents a series of country notes and steps to be followed in designing nutrition sensitive interventions.
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    Implementing the Poznan Strategic and Long-term Programs on Technology Transfer
    (Washington, DC, 2012-11) Global Environment Facility
    Promoting the transfer of environmentally sound technologies (ESTs) and best practices to developing and transition countries is a key priority for all countries that seek to mitigate climate change impacts and build resilience. The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is one of the entities entrusted to provide financial resources to assist developing and transition countries in implementing the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The GEF launched the Poznan Strategic Program on Technology Transfer in 2008. This program supports the following activities: 1) conduct technology needs assessments; 2) support pilot priority technology projects linked to technology needs assessments; and 3) disseminate GEF experience and successfully demonstrated ESTs. The Long-Term Program on Technology Transfer seeks to scale up technology transfer activities supported under the original Poznan Program. This long-term program includes the following elements: (i) support for climate technology centers and a climate technology network; (ii) piloting priority technology projects to foster innovation and investments; (iii) public-private partnership for technology transfer; (iv) technology needs assessments; and (v) GEF as a catalytic supporting institution for technology transfer. This document provides an overview of the GEF's approach on promoting technology transfer, with new insights, along with updates on the original Poznan Program and the Long-Term Program.
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    Nonfinancial Defined Contribution Pension Schemes in a Changing Pension World : Volume 1. Progress, Lessons, and Implementation
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2012) Holzmann, Robert ; Palmer, Edward ; Robalino, David
    Pensions and social insurance programs are an integral part of any social protection system. Their dual objectives are to prevent a sharp decline in income and protect against poverty resulting from old age, disability, or death. The critical role of pensions for protection, prevention, and promotion was reiterated and expanded in the new World Bank 2012-2022 social protection strategy. This new strategy reviews the success and challenges of the past decade or more, during which time the World Bank became a main player in the area of pensions. But more importantly, the strategy takes the three key objectives for pensions under the World Bank's conceptual framework coverage, adequacy, and sustainability and asks how these objectives and the inevitable difficult balance between them can best be achieved. The ongoing focus on closing the coverage gap with social pensions and the new outreach to explore the role of matching contributions to address coverage and/or adequacy is part of this strategy. This comprehensive anthology on nonfinancial defined contribution (NDC) pension schemes is part and parcel of the effort to explore and document the working of this new system or reform option and its ability to balance these three key objectives. This innovative, unfunded individual accounts scheme provides a promising option at a time when the world seems locked into a stalemate between piecemeal reform of ailing traditional defined benefit plans or their replacement with prefunded financial account schemes. The current financial crisis, with its focus on sovereign debt, has enhanced the attraction of NDC as a pension scheme that aims for intra and intergenerational fairness, offers a transparent framework to distribute economic and demographic risks, and, if well designed, promises long-term financial stability. Supplemented with a basic minimum pension guarantee, explicit noncontributory rights, and a funded pillar, the NDC approach provides an efficient framework for addressing poverty and risk diversification concerns.
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    The Fiscal Dimension of HIV/AIDS in Botswana, South Africa, Swaziland, and Uganda
    (World Bank, 2012) Lule, Elizabeth ; Haacker, Markus
    HIV/AIDS imposes enormous economic, social, health, and human costs and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. The challenge is particularly acute in Sub-Saharan Africa, home to two-thirds (22.5 million) of the people living with HIV/AIDS globally, and where HIV/AIDS has become the leading cause of premature death. But now, after decades of misery and frustration with the disease, there are signs of hope. HIV prevalence rates in Africa are stabilizing. This book sheds light on these concerns by analyzing the fiscal implications of HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa, the epicenter of the epidemic. It uses the toolbox of public finance to assess the sustainability of HIV/AIDS programs. Importantly, it highlights the long-term nature of the fiscal commitments implied by HIV/AIDS programs, and explicitly discusses the link between HIV infections and the resulting commitments of fiscal resources. The analysis shows that, absent adjustments to policies, treatment is not sustainable. But it also shows that, by accompanying treatment with prevention, and making existing programs more cost-effective, these countries can manage both treatment and fiscal sustainability. Even in countries where HIV/AIDS-related spending is high or increasing (as past infections translate into an increasing demand for treatment), the fiscal space absorbed by the costs of HIV/AIDS-related services will decline if progress in containing and rolling back the number of new infections can be sustained. The purpose of this study is to refine the analysis of the fiscal burden of HIV/AIDS on national governments and assess the fiscal risks associated with scaling-up national HIV/AIDS responses. The study complements and contributes to the agenda on identifying and creating fiscal space for HIV/AIDS and other development expenditures. The findings from this study, and the analytical tools developed in it, could help governments in defining policy objectives, improving fiscal planning, and conducting their dialogue with donor agencies.
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    Reforming Severance Pay : An International Perspective
    (World Bank, 2012) Holzmann, Robert ; Vodopivec, Milan
    Throughout the developed and developing world there is growing demand for policies that would facilitate access to jobs by the most vulnerable, improve their earnings, and reduce their dependency on public support. As a result, governments are increasingly focused on removing obstacles faced by employers to create jobs and on instilling incentives for individuals to re-enter the labor market or to move toward more productive employment possibilities. Severance pay a program compensating formal workers for dismissal by employers or with an end-of-service benefit is often blamed for distorting employer hiring and firing decisions. Together with restrictive labor market regulations and other formal labor market features, this program is held responsible for excessive job protection with a negative impact on labor market outcomes, in particular affecting the most vulnerable. Despite this strong negative assessment among many labor market economists, surprisingly little is known about this program that exists in most countries around the world as a legally mandated benefit. This lack of knowledge may derive from the special 'positioning' of the program between labor code and social insurance; its origins were in the first policy domain, but its objectives for key programs were replicated in the second domain in particular unemployment and retirement benefits. This is the first-ever book to shed light on this program in a comprehensive manner its historical origins, its rationale, and its characteristics across the world. It reviews the soundness of the empirical accusation, assesses recent country reforms, and offers policy reform alternatives and policy guidance. The policy directions include folding severance pay into existing social insurance programs, where they exist, and to make severance pay contractual between market partners as a way to enhance efficiency in a knowledge-based economy. Folding severance pay into employment benefits may also be an opportunity to move away from unemployment insurance, which is fraught by moral hazard, toward a promising 'hybrid' system of unemployment insurance savings accounts supplemented by social pooling.
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    Some Small Countries Do It Better : Rapid Growth and Its Causes in Singapore, Finland, and Ireland
    (World Bank, 2012) Yusuf, Shahid ; Nabeshima, Kaoru
    This book is an outcome of a series of study visits to Singapore for African policy makers initiated by Jee-Peng Tan in 2005 with support from Tommy Koh in Singapore and Birger Fredriksen, Yaw Ansu, and Dzingai Mutumbuka at the World Bank. Starting in the 1960s-earlier if Japan is included-a number of East Asian economies began achieving growth rates well above the average and were able to maintain that pace until nearly the end of the 1990s. Countries, large and small, have struggled to imitate the industrial prowess of the East Asian pacesetters and to exploit the opportunities presented by globalization to expand exports. But approximating the East Asian benchmarks has proven difficult, and growth accelerations have tended to be remarkably transient.
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    Opportunities in Dam Planning and Management : A Communication Practitioner's Handbook for Large Water Infrastructure
    (World Bank, 2011-06-21) Mazzei, Leonardo ; Haas, Lawrence J. M. ; O'Leary, Donal T.
    Communication for development is a comparatively new field that offers new tools and techniques to support inclusive and informed decisions in the planning and management of large water and energy infrastructure projects, including dams. Rethinking the approach to communication on dam projects is also timely in today's policy context. A window of opportunity has opened to tie in governance reform (including fighting corruption), poverty reduction, and communication with today's challenges in sustainable infrastructure development. Progress on any one of these aspects requires effective communication with stakeholders and interests. This handbook aims to help foster a 'communication culture' that will accommodate the wide range of stakeholder interests in dam planning and management in ways appropriate to the development context of today and the need to promote solutions to sustainability challenges. It seeks to create awareness among practitioners of the benefits and costs of improving the role of communication in infrastructure development. It also demonstrates how communication helps to improve governments' capacities to address corruption issues in infrastructure. Finally, this handbook is aimed at building the capacity of project teams and government officials to effectively adopt and adapt modern communication principles and tools to cover all stages of the dam project cycle.
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    How to Engage with the Private Sector in Public-Private Partnerships in Emerging Markets
    (World Bank, 2011-06-14) Farquharson, Edward ; Torres de Mastle, Clemencia ; Yescombe, E.R. ; Encinas, Javier
    What transforms a desirable project on a government wish list to an attractive investment opportunity in the eyes of a potential private sector partner? This guide seeks to enhance the chances of developing effective partnerships between the public and the private sectors by addressing one of the main obstacles to the effective delivery of public-private partnership (PPP) projects: having the right information on the right project for the right partners at the right time. Data from the World Bank and the Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility (PPIAF) private participation in infrastructure (PPI) project database indicate that private sector investment in infrastructure in developing economies grew steadily over the past decade. By 2007 the levels had finally surpassed the peak levels seen in 1997, the end of the previous growth spurt. This guide focuses specifically on what should be done, and when, in order to prepare projects to attract the right long-term private partners, procure their involvement, and manage the partnership. This guide is not a detailed project preparation manual; rather, it seeks to provide an overview of the process and what is involved so that greater realism can be applied to this challenging task and adequate resource plans can be developed.
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    Border Management Modernization
    (World Bank, 2011) McLinden, Gerard ; Fanta, Enrique ; Widdowson, David ; Doyle, Tom
    This book provides border management policymakers and reformers with a broad survey of key developments in and principles for improving trade facilitation through better border management, including practical advice on particular issues. In contrast to the traditional border management reform agenda, with its focus on improving customs operations, this book addresses both customs reform and areas well beyond customs-a significant broadening of scope. The book thus presents a new, more comprehensive approach to trade facilitation through border management reform: an approach that embraces a much wider, 'whole of government' perspective. The objective of this book is to summarize and provide guidance on what constitutes good practices in border management-looking beyond customs clearance. The contributions to the volume make clear that there are no simple or universally applicable solutions. Instead, the aim is to provide a range of general guidelines that can be used to better understand the complex border management environment and the interdependencies and interrelationships that collectively need to be addressed to secure meaningful change and improvement.
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    Entrepreneurship Snapshots 2010 : Measuring the Impact of the Financial Crisis on New Business Registration
    (World Bank, 2011) World Bank
    New businesses are likely to have been even more severely affected by the crisis than mature businesses, even in non crisis times, new and young firms tend to be more constrained than older firms which often have established reputations and enjoy easier access to finance. Given the sudden scarcity of credit and the uncertain economic outlook, it is reasonable to assume that entrepreneurs wanting to start a new business or register an existing informal business were hit especially hard by the downturn. Until now, however there has been a lack of comprehensive evidence to support this assumption. The impact of the 2008-09 financial crises on new business creation should be of special interest given the importance of entrepreneurs and young firms to the continued dynamism of the modern market economy; it is well established that a robust entry rate of new business can foster competition and economic growth. This report hypothesizes that although economies with more developed financial markets were hit harder by the crisis, they will enjoy stronger and quicker recoveries in new firm creation.