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By Kenneth King

In 1996, the realm financial institution President, James Wolfensohn, declared that his association could henceforth be "the wisdom bank." This assertion marks the start in earnest of a brand new discourse of knowledge-based relief, which has unfold quickly around the improvement box. This publication is the 1st targeted try and examine this new discourse and perform. via an exam of 4 agencies--the global financial institution, the British division for foreign improvement, the Japan overseas Cooperation supplier and the Swedish foreign improvement Cooperation Agency--the publication explores what this new method of reduction ability in either idea and perform. It argues that an excessive amount of of the emphasis of knowledge-based relief has been on constructing capability inside companies instead of addressing the expressed wishes of Southern "partners." in addition, it questions even if knowledge-based reduction results in larger enterprise sure bet approximately what constitutes stable improvement.

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Additional resources for Knowledge for Development?: Comparing British, Japanese, Swedish and World Bank Aid

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Japan, for instance, continued to build on its own development experiences (see chapter 7) to fund strategies for infrastructural development and economic growth in South-East Asia. By the end of the 1970s, however, the basic needs approach began to be overtaken by a new ideological orthodoxy that was spreading from Britain and the USA. The elections of both Reagan and Thatcher in 1979–1980 saw the emerging ascendancy of neoliberal thinking in OECD countries. Quickly this became a powerful force in Northern thinking about development.

In JICA, much of the formal knowledge on which practice is based comes from ‘development studies’, ‘basic design studies’ and ‘thematic and country studies’, in which Japanese consultants play the primary role (see chapter 7). Research by and for the South has also been supported by a range of other Northern actors, including the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada, and the Institute for Research on Development, France. International public goods The 1998–99 World Development Report highlights the issue of international public goods as one with which development co-operation agencies should be concerned: Just as there are national public goods, so there are international ones, and many types of knowledge fall into this category.

For some within the World Bank, for instance (World Bank 1998d; Devarajan, Dollar and Holmgren 1999), there is a need to remain strong on the issue of conditionalities. This has led to various formulations that seek to balance the forces of partnership and conditionality. In the British development White Paper of 1997 (DFID 1997) and the proposals for the Comprehensive Development Framework (Wolfensohn 1999), this balancing led to a distinction between full partners, suitable for sector-wide programmes or the CDF, and others suitable only for a more limited version of partnership: We should offer our assistance to all countries in need.

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