Robert Zoellick


And the next president of the World Bank will be … | 

Probably an American and possibly, some say, Bill Clinton or Andy Summers.

The World Bank is an institution created in the closing days of World War II to provide loans to poor and/or struggling countries based on the concept that a healthy global economy is good for all of us.

See, this ‘globalization’ stuff really isn’t that new. The World Bank’s approach to helping poor countries hasn’t always worked out too well or been seen as very healthy (see ‘structural adjustment‘ or economic ‘shock therapy‘ programs) but alleviating global poverty is the stated goal of the institution.

World Bank

The news this week is that World Bank president Robert Zoellick, who before taking the post in 2007 was a Goldman Sachs executive (yes, they’re everywhere), is stepping down. So now the buzz is all about who will replace him. By tradition, the head of the WB is always an American.

Nancy Birdsall, at the Center for Global Development, asks Does it matter who runs the world bank? Yes it does. Continue reading