Data are everywhere. But what is the data revolution doing for the 700 million people who live in extreme poverty? When data are turned into valuable information, they have the potential to improve lives, transform economies, and help end poverty. Now more than ever, the world is facing new demands for data as our principal weapon in the war against COVID-19. The latest edition of the World Development Report from the World Bank provides a blueprint on how to harness the power of data for development, to ensure no one is left behind.
As the new year begins, I am pleased to announce that the World Bank Group’s next World Development Report (WDR) for 2021 will be on Data for Development.
WDR 2021 will be the first WDR report on the role of Data for Development
The World Development Report (WDR) 2019: The Changing Nature of Work studies how the nature of work is changing as a result of advances in technology today. Fears that robots will take away jobs from people have dominated the discussion over the future of work, but the World Development Report 2019 finds that on balance this appears to be unfounded. Work is constantly reshaped by technological progress. Firms adopt new ways of production, markets expand, and societies evolve. Overall, technology brings opportunity, paving the way to create new jobs, increase productivity, and deliver effective public services. Firms can grow rapidly thanks to digital transformation, expanding their boundaries and reshaping traditional production patterns.
Do you wonder if the good fortune and opportunities that you’ve enjoyed in your professional life will be available to your children, and to their children? At a time of strong global economic growth, it may seem paradoxical that we face an existential crisis around the future of work. But the pace of innovation is accelerating, and the jobs of the future – in a few months or a few years – will require specific, complex skills.
A few weeks ago, I felt a sense of déjà vu. I was at a roundtable on agriculture in Delhi, in the same conference hall where, ten years ago, I participated in the consultations on the Bank’s World Development Report 2008 on Agriculture for Development.
This time we were discussing how India can build a stronger agriculture sector without further harm to the environment or depletion of its natural resources. The high-level dialogue was attended by senior representatives from India’s Niti Aayog, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, leaders of farmers’ associations from Punjab and Haryana, as well as by researchers, academics and donors. We focused on the ‘agriculture-water-energy’ nexus, achieving India’s second green revolution, making agriculture more climate resilient, as well as options to stop the burning of crop residue that is worsening air quality in much of northern India. It was heartening to see the torch bearers of India’s drive towards food security unhesitatingly debate a host of complex and sensitive issues.
World Development Report 2018 calls for greater measurement, action on evidence
WASHINGTON, September 26, 2017 – Millions of young students in low and middle-income countries face the prospect of lost opportunity and lower wages in later life because their primary and secondary schools are failing to educate them to succeed in life. Warning of ‘a learning crisis’ in global education, a new Bank report said schooling without learning was not just a wasted development opportunity, but also a great injustice to children and young people worldwide.
The World Development Report 2018 (WDR 2018)—LEARNING to Realize Education’s Promise—is the first ever devoted entirely to education. And the timing is excellent: education has long been critical to human welfare, but it is even more so in a time of rapid economic and social change. The best way to equip children and youth for the future is to place their learning at the center. The 2018 WDR explores four main themes: 1) education’s promise; 2) the need to shine a light on learning; 3) how to make schools work for learners; and 4) how to make systems work for learning.
Main Messages World Development Report 2017
Ineffective policies can persist, while potentially effective policies are often not adopted. The World Development Report 2017: Governance and the Law explores why some policies fail to achieve desired outcomes and what makes other policies work. The main messages of the WDR 2017 are:
- Successful reforms are not just about “best practice.” To be effective, policies must guarantee credible commitment, support coordination, and promote cooperation.
- Power asymmetries can undermine policy effectiveness. The unequal distribution of power in the policy arena can lead to exclusion, capture, and clientelism.
- Change is possible. Elites, citizens, and international actors can promote change by shifting incentives, reshaping preferences and beliefs, and enhancing the contestability of the decision making process.
- Three guiding principles for rethinking governance for development are:
- Think not only about the form of institutions, but also about their functions.
- Think not only about capacity building, but also about power asymmetries.
- Think not only about the rule of law, but also about the role of law.
Download full report here.