What is it?
The Annual Meetings are a yearly gathering of the Boards of Governors of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund. In addition to these official meetings, the Bank and IMF organize a number of other events and fora to discuss the progress of the institutions, their challenges, and issues relevant to the broader development community. One opportunity for civil society to participate in these conversations is the Civil Society Policy Forum (CSPF). The CSPF is made up of panels that are suggested and sponsored by civil society organizations as well as a roundtable with Executive Directors and a townhall with the World Bank Group President and IMF Managing Director. The full program for the CSPF is available on the Bank’s website here.
When is it?
The Annual Meetings are held every year in the autumn, usually in early October. The 2017 Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund will take place in Washington, D.C. October 9 – 15. Alongside official events sponsored by the World Bank and IMF, civil society can sponsor panels and events through the Civil Society Policy Forum, which runs October 10 – 13.
Why should I participate?
The CSPF sessions provide opportunities for civil society to present their views on development finance programs and policies as well as dialogue with WBG/IMF staff, government representatives, journalists, academics, and other interested stakeholders. There are also opportunities for networking throughout the week for civil society representatives.
How do I participate?
All who wish to participate in the Civil society Policy Forum must be accredited. Individuals must register for the 2017 CSPF by September 22. When registering, civil society representatives should use an organizational email address rather than a personal email address, and/or register with an affiliated organization that can be listed on the registration form as a “coordinator.” The registration form can be found here.
In which events is BIC participating this year?
BIC is co-sponsoring a number of CSPF sessions and events with civil society partners, including those listed below. To attend CSPF events you must be accredited (see “How do I participate?” above).
- Closing the Transparency Gap: Disclosure of Project Information
The session will explore the relationship between proactive disclosure, transparency and accountability especially in project-related information of international finance institutions. It will assess current practices and their consistency with global initiatives and practices in-country. What are best practices and what are remaining transparency gaps? What, if any, measures can be taken to harmonize practices across institutions and global standards? How is the next generation of IFI policies addressing proactive disclosure?
- Forest, Climate and Land Rights: How can policy lending address the major challenges of development?
This side event will provide an introduction to the World Bank’s Development Policy Financing (DPF), presenting initial findings from research from Colombia and discussing ways forward to address some of the weaknesses in DPF’s current focus and structure, so that DPF can help incentivise progress towards social and environmental goals.
- Moving from Lessons Learned to Lessons Applied on Gender Based Violence
This panel will address the ways in which the major points in this document are being applied to current and future projects to prevent future projects from increasing rates of gender based violence and sexual exploitation, as well as what more remains to be done.
- The Value of Accountability Mechanisms: By Whom and For What?
IFIs can reduce the risk of harm and mitigate adverse impacts to project affected people and
further the development outcome of their investments by respecting the decisions of their
independent accountability mechanisms. This session will explore how the IAMs are valued, by
whom and for what.
- Seeing the Wood for the Carbon
The session will explore whether the potential of REDD+ to leverage real governance reforms and deliver tangible benefits on the ground in tropical forest countries is being compromised by time pressures to disburse climate funds. It will debate practical measures for how emissions reductions programs are more likely to fulfill their intended purpose.
- The World Bank, Climate, Forests and Energy Access: How can Country Partnership Frameworks promote actions that prioritize a low carbon and pro poor future?
Experts from civil society, academia, and the World Bank will explore and assess the Bank’s new country engagement strategy and how it can best support action on some of the biggest challenges of the 21st Century: combating climate change, protecting forests and the rights of forest peoples, and energy access for poor communities. Real-life experiences from Colombia, Peru, and Cambodia will inform the discussion and provide an opportunity for civil society to learn how best to influence the Bank and advocate for policy reforms within their countries to ensure future investments respect people’s rights and promote sustainable development that does not harm people and the environment. The roundtable will explore how, in order to promote inclusive development, the voices of excluded and marginalized communities have to be included, not only in the consultations but also in the country development strategy itself.
- Civil Society and the World Bank’s Country Engagement Model
IEG invited BIC to participate on their panel on civil society engagement in the Bank’s Country Engagement Model, discussing lessons from their recent process report
- Funding Energy Access for the Poor: Can the World Bank Meet the Challenge?
The Global Tracking Framework, jointly produced by the World Bank and the International Energy Agency, reports that not nearly enough progress is being made and if the current rate of progress persists the SEforAll objectives will not be met. This session will discuss ways on how WBG’s own approach can be modified to meet the globally set objectives with a special emphasis on Bank’s Energy Directions Paper. Many CSO groups attending CSPF are working on this field together with WBG staff, making it a critical panel during this AGM.