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The World Bank is an international financial organization which was originally founded and build in 1944. In this time it was its primarily task to help rebuilding Europe in a social and financial way. Many places in Europe were enormously damaged by the second world war. After this first task appeared to be finished in a satisfying way the institution shifted its mayor focus on a different task for which it is known in the present time: Supporting countries and their inhabitants of middle to low wage levels.
I am studying myself a subject which is called “Public and Non-Profit management”. It is particulary designed to support a career in the public and the non-profit sector. Since the actions of the World Bank are allocated almost completely in the second sector I might well think of myself as being employed by this organization in the future. Therefore it is in my personal interest to know the most about this big player in the non-profit sector. Meanwhile I am going to illustrate origin and history of this institution, as I am going to evaluate their contemporary work by reviewing existing literature and researching to build my own opinion and to be able to give future recommendations concerning on how the World Bank can meet their objectives.
Initially the world bank was created in 1944 at the “Bretton Woods Conference”. As the same instant the “International Monetary Fund” was created alongside. Each of them are located in Washington D.C. and work together in close cooperation. Under strict conditions the World Bank gave its first loan to France. It summed up to the amount of 250 million USD.
Along with the “Marshall Plan” 1947 many European countries received financial aid and the World Bank started shifting its focus to Non-European countries. Starting 1974 the bank defined the basic needs of people in development countries and aimed to fulfill them better. The amount of their given loans has significantly increased as they shifted from only giving support to the improvement of infrastructure, which was their initial plan to boost local economies, over to giving aid in terms of social services and in other public sectors. As consequence from the sheer amount of given loans, the developing world debt rose between 1976 to 1980 a drastically 20% each year.
In 1980 along with a new president a new policy was called in existence. Alden W. Clausen did have a less positive picture of development countries and he aimed to streamline development country’s economies in a way which should make it possible for them to repay their debt. As consequence of a lack of financial means in the lowest ladders of society many people especially children had to suffer. According to Unicef the World Bank was responsible for “reduced health, nutritional and educational levels for tens of millions of children in Asia, Latin America, and Africa”.
In consequence the World Bank received harsh critics and they therefore started to change the organizational agenda. Beginning in 1989 they started giving loans to NGOs and organizations which are committed to improving the enviremental situation throughout development countries. Furthermore they realized climate change as a uprising new challenge, which faces humanity as a whole and consequently committed to the goal of banning 95 percent of ozone-harming chemicals till 2015. Furthermore, they called out the “Six Strategic Theme” defining further objectives of the institution.
In 2000 the World Bank joined the “war on AIDS” and in 2011 they joined the Stop Tuberculosis Partnership.
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