17, August, 2012

Spotlight on Publications: Participation in Development Projects Funded by International Financial Institutions

The following selection of publications provides insights, cases, lessons learned and guidelines to help development practitioners, communities and civil society organisations (CSOs), among other stakeholders, access tools to activate IFIs accountability mechanisms and to actively participate in decision making about large-scale development projects in their communities.

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Accountability at the World Bank: The Inspection Panel at 15 Years

In this publication, the World Bank assesses its own Inspection Panel in the 15 years since it was founded. It discusses its mandate and characteristics from an institutional perspective. In addition to offering the reader a better understanding of the background of this accountability mechanism, it also offers case studies from the fiscal year 2009. Requests from Panama and Argentina, along with cases from other regions, are presented, including detailed information about the request, the project and the process’ phases prior to the Panel’s final resolution. The Appendix illustrates the geographical distribution of the different requests that have been made by Latin American countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Honduras, Mexico, Panama and Paraguay. The publication also includes a summary of the cases, the request and the panel’s activity, and summarises the alleged violations of policies and procedures by request. This publication will be useful for learning from cases not just from Latin America, but from other regions as well.
Full citation: World Bank. 2009. Accountability at the World Bank: The Inspection Panel at 15 Years. World Bank, Washington, DC.

Breaking Ground: Engaging Communities in Extractive and Infrastructure Projects

This guide presents seven principles for effective community engagement in large-scale extractive industry and infrastructure projects, though in reality they could be applied to any development project. These principles come from an analysis of key existing community engagement policies, laws and guidance from international financial institutions, industry associations and host governments. The principles are: prepare communities before engaging; determine what level of engagement is needed; integrate community engagement into each phase of the project cycle; include traditionally excluded stakeholders; gain free, prior and informed consent; resolve community grievances through dialogue; and promote participatory monitoring by local communities. Such principles are developed through practical examples, many of them from Latin America, like the Marlin Mine in Guatemala, Tintaya Mine in Peru and participatory mapping used in the Peruvian Amazon. This publication is a rich source of information to enhance citizen participation within development projects among communities and local CSOs advocating for inclusive, accountable and transparent processes.
Full citation: Herbertson, K. et al. 2009. Breaking Ground: Engaging Communities in Extractive and Infrastructure Projects. World Resource Institute, Washington, DC.

Demanding Accountability: Civil-Society Claims and the World Bank Inspection Panel

This book presents the context in which the World Bank created its main accountability mechanism, the Inspection Panel, and the first years of its existence. The volume analyses different paradigmatic cases that submitted claims to the Panel during its first eight years of operation, providing detailed information about the international and national contexts, participation of communities and results. The book has a strong focus on Latin American cases, such as the Panafloro Project in Brazil, the Yacyretá Dam in Argentina and Paraguay, and the Biobío Project in Chile. The case studies, and the authors’ final reflections and lessons learned, will likely be useful to development practitioners, CSOs and communities that advocate for transparency and accountability within World Bank development projects.
Full citation: Clark, D., Fox, J., Treakle, K. (eds.) 2003. Demanding Accountability: Civil-Society Claims and the World Bank Inspection Panel. Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc., Lanham.

A Guide to Designing and Implementing Grievance Mechanisms for Development Projects

This guide provides practical advice and lessons for having effective and credible grievance mechanisms that apply when a development project is financed by a private company. It draws on examples from Peru along with interviews with experts from Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala and Panama. This publication highlights good practices, such as the need to start early in the project cycle, involve the community in the design of the grievance mechanism, ensure accessibility to diverse stakeholders, incorporate a variety of grievance resolution approaches, and the importance of reporting back to the community.
Full Citation: Office of the Compliance Advisor/Ombudsman (CAO). 2008. A Guide to Designing and Implementing Grievance Mechanisms for Development Projects. CAO, Washington, DC.

Indigenous Peoples and the World Bank: Experiences with Participation

This publication offers a historical sketch of the World Bank’s interactions with indigenous people and assesses the quality of their participation in the World Bank’s policy processes, consultations and sector reviews. It draws out critical lessons and identifies obstacles to meaningful and effective participation by analysing how citizen participation impacted the current World Bank’s Operational Policy on Indigenous People, one of the World Bank’s main safeguard policies and therefore essential as an accountability mechanism. In addition, the comments and assessments from different stakeholders from Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela are systematised. The publication will help readers understand not only the World Bank’s approach to participation and indigenous people, but also the challenges it faces in practice.
Full Citation: Griffiths, T. 2005. Indigenous Peoples and the World Bank: Experiences with Participation. Forest Peoples Programme, UK.

Indigenous Peoples and World Bank Projects: A Community Guide to the World Bank’s Indigenous Peoples Policy (OP/BP 4.10)

This short guide provides information about the rules that World Bank projects must follow, such as safeguard policies and relevant accountability mechanisms within development projects. It gives detailed information about people’s rights to access information, be consulted fairly and be engaged in World Bank projects. It also addresses how to involve the government when it comes to concerns and objections to a particular World Bank funded project.
Full Citation: Forest People Programme. 2008. Indigenous Peoples and the World Bank Projects: A Community Guide to the World Bank’s Indigenous Peoples Policy (PO/BP 4.10). Forest Peoples Programme, UK.

A Seat at the Table: Including the Poor in Decisions for Development and Environment

Citizen participation is crucial in decision making processes regarding development projects that will have environmental and social impacts. Through four case studies, including one from Latin America - Paraguay - this guide analyses the main barriers for people to engage in decision making processes in IFI-funded development projects. It addresses access to information, public participation and access to justice as the key pillars for accessing decision making spaces. The final part of the guide presents eight practical policy responses for enhancing access to decision making and citizen participation. This publication provides practical examples where CSOs, community groups and other stakeholders have taken steps in overcoming barriers to actively engage in decision making processes.
Full citation: Foti, J., de Silva, L. 2010. A Seat at the Table: Including the Poor in Decisions for Development and Environment. World Resource Institute, Washington, DC.

Unlocking the World Bank’s Access to Information Policy: Your Key to the Vault

This publication offers a practical guide to understanding and using the World Bank’s Access to Information Policy, which itself is crucial for activating the Inspection Panel. The Policy covers information on development projects in-country, including information such as cost, governmental institution responsible for implementation, approval and closing dates, sectors involved and evaluation reports. It also explains the what communities should know about a particular project’s category and the safeguard policies that apply. Finally, it offers a clear analysis of the exception rules, meaning information that is governed by special conditions on its disclosure, such as time period or third party approval. This valuable publication will be useful for communities and CSOs aiming to access information about the World Bank projects being funded in their countries.
Full citation: Bank Information Center (BIC). 2011. Unlocking the World Bank’s Access to Information Policy: Your Key to the Vault. BIC, Washington, DC.

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