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The World Bank

Posted by admin on February 10, 2014

 

 

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WORLD BANK GROUP MISSION STATEMENT

Our dream is a world free of poverty 

  • To fight poverty with passion and professionalism for lasting results.
  • To help people help themselves and their environment by providing resources, sharing knowledge, building capacity, and forging partnerships in the public and private sectors.
  • To be an excellent institution able to attract, excite, and nurture, diverse and committed staff with exceptional skills who know how to listen and learn. 

Our principles 

  • Client centered, working in partnership, accountability for quality results, dedicated to financial integrity and cost-effectiveness, inspired and innovative.

Our values

  • Personal honesty, integrity, commitment; working together in teams – with openness and trust; empowering others and respecting differences; encouraging risk-taking and responsibility; enjoying our work and our families.

    The World Bank (WB) is an internationally supported bank that provides loans to developing countries for development programs (e.g. bridges, roads, schools, etc.) with the stated goal of reducing poverty (Wikipedia 2008). The WB was founded over 50 years ago to handle conditions caused by World War II. It highlights the need for investing in people, particularly through education and health; encouraging and supporting development of the private sector and protecting the environment. 

    The WB is part of the World Bank Group and is made up of two unique development institutions owned by 185 member countries -  the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA) (IBRD 2003). Working through both IBRD and IDA, the Bank uses its financial resources, a skilled staff and an extensive knowledge base to help each developing country to achieve stable, sustainable, and equitable growth (IBRD 2003). The same headquarters and the same staff are shared by IBRD and IDA while using the same standards for evaluation of projects and reporting to the same senior management. 

    The World Bank Group is made up of five entities that work collaboratively towards a shared goal and specialize in different aspects of development:

    • International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) – was founded in 1944, provides loans to developing countries with relatively high per capita income and countries undergoing economic transition (APQC, 2003). Countries that borrow from the IBRD typically have 15 to 20 years to repay the loan with a three-to-five-year grace period before the repayment of principle begins. The IBRD money is raised in the world’s financial markets.
    • International Finance Corporation (IFC) established in 1956, provides financing to private sectors without government guarantees.
    • International Development Association (IDA) was established in 1960 with the aim of providing long-tem loans at concessional rates to the poorest developing countries with very limited access to private capital (World Bank and Governance). In addition, these countries also receive interest-free loans, and technical assistance from the World Bank.
    • International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) created in 1966, ICSID settles investment disputes between foreign investors and their host countries (APQC 2003).
    • Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) provides non-financial and political risk guarantees to private investors.

     

     This report evaluates and discusses several critical aspects with particular focus on the evaluation and management of the World Bank’s global information communications and technology infrastructure. The following key issues will be analyzed and discussed: 

    1. The evolution and management of the WB’s global information system strategy using the five dimensions of the business architecture framework model, namely: value proposition, resources, processes, profit and growth, and partnership.
    2. Discussion of high level of the Balanced Scorecard (BSC) performance tool for evaluating the management of the WB’s global information communications and technology infrastructure.
    3. Discussion of the information communications and technology (ICT) challenges now facing the WB in managing its global information communications and technology infrastructure. Specific emphasis placed on the WB’s core business information systems (including legacy systems), ICT infrastructure, B2B system integration, standards and security.
    4. Recommendations for the CEO regarding the strategic management of the WB’s global information communications and technology infrastructure for next five years.  
              

Value Proposition 

The WB has become a repository of best practices and experiences due to provision of advisory and lending services for 50 years throughout the world. However, this accumulated information was not always readily available to those who needed it (APQC 2003); this led to loss in effectiveness of services provided by the WB. In October 1996, James D. Wolfensohn (president of the WB) announced that “knowledge management would be a key strategy for the organization as it deals with these problems in the future. We need to become in effect, the ‘Knowledge Bank’ (APQC 2003).   

The World Bank Group’s established relationships with various institutions and governments worldwide including enormous development experiences across sectors and countries positioned the WB to play a leading role in knowledge management partnership. James D. Wolfensohn announced that “To capture this potential we need to invest in the necessary systems, in Washington and worldwide, that will enhance our ability to gather development information and experience and share it with our clients’ (APQC 2003). Wolfensohn’s vision included dissemination of the WB’s knowledge not only to internal staff by also to external clients and partners.  The value proposition then consists of the sum total of benefits which a vendor promises that a customer will receive in return for the customer's associated payment (or other value-transfer) (Wikipedia 2008). 

The knowledge management strategy was a strategic shift aimed at helping the WB become a different kind of organization – more agile, open and able to reduce poverty (Building & Sustaining Communities of Practice 2001). Reported in 1997, the main elements of knowledge management for the WB were as follows (Figure 1). 

It allowed the WB to address each client’s specific problems by mobilizing its relevant global experience. Knowledge sharing emerged as a business necessity because the WB realized that lending alone could not possibly accomplish poverty reduction (APQC 2003).

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Resources 

Resources are all the capabilities, skills, and assets that a company uses to create economic value, and can be divided into three broad groups; (1) structural capital; (2) human capital; and (3) relationship capital (Farhoomand 2005). 

1). Structural capital refers to explicit knowledge about the organization. It consists of codified knowledge and includes systems, processes, technologies, and any other physical assets (Farhoomand 2005). The first major challenge, as reported by the WB in 1997, was integration (APQC 2003). There was a high degree of knowledge domain diversity in the WB caused by broad cultural, socioeconomic and technical differentiation of the world’s developing regions. 

In 1997 the WB’s knowledge management system was not designed to be a single monolithic database or delivery system, but rather was a collection of knowledge resources enabled by a suite of tools that support capture, processing, and delivery including remote access (APQC 2003). Lotus Notes and Web technology were among first platforms used for knowledge management with institutional solutions such as imaging playing increasingly important role. The internet is the principle tool for sharing knowledge, both externally and internally. The WB uses a combination of the Internet and Lotus Notes for Extranets in the form of activity rooms. The responsibility for validating knowledge materials and disseminating them online rests with the thematic groups. 

2). Human Capital relates to tacit knowledge in the organization (Farhoomand 2005). It consists of experiences, skills and the knowledge that exist in individuals. In 2000, in order to facilitate the exchange of knowledge, the WB changed the working structure from a geographic organization structure to a matrix organization structure – decentralization has occurred (APQC 2002).  Innovation in teams is explored and the thematic and advisory services groups were formed in order to speed up the exchange of ideas and information within the organization and increasingly with clients and partners. According to Kargia, the approach is very effective because the teams focus on learning before, during, and after projects and use project milestones and After-Action Reviews to capture lessons and feed them back into the process (Figure 2).

A knowledge manager in each business unit is the key human capital of the organization, as they are responsible for both the knowledge-sharing activities in that unit and budget. Overall coordination of all knowledge-sharing activities is accomplished by a four-person, central knowledge-sharing unit (APQC 2002). 

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3). Relationship Capital relates to relationships and knowledge of customers, suppliers, distributors, partners, and competitors; it includes, among other things, brand equity and trust (Farhoomand 2005). The WB plays a vital role in coordinating with other organizations – private, government, multilateral, and non-government – to ensure that resources are used to their full effect in supporting a country’s development agenda. There are three main types of partnerships: institutional, trust fund, and programmatic; many partnerships are established with the stakeholders themselves at the country level as part of specific project (APQC 2003). 

2.3            Processes

The activities performed by an organization with its resources to produce a set of outcomes are referred to as the process. The processes can be divided into nine different categories and their application to the WB is illustrated below. 

Table 1 – The WB nine core processes 

 

Core Processes

 

 

Definition

 

 

Implication to WB

 

1). New offering realization processes

 

 

“How a company defines, designs, and markets new offerings”

KM system developed for the WB to create close partnership and coordination with other organizations – private, government, multilateral, and non-government – to ensure that resources are used to their full effect in supporting a country’s development agenda.

 

2). Customer relationship management process

 

 

“How a company builds and maintains relationship with its customers”

 

The WB primary customers are the developing member countries to which it lends. KM system and decentralization of the Bank’s processes defined around helping clients enhance their capacity to tap generate and use knowledge from all sources.

 

3). Fulfillment of management process

 

 

“How a company sources its inputs and markets its products and services”

 

The WB now has a high-speed global network with standardized applications in about 100 sites with 24/7 access. The information is sourced from the WB partners (i.e. clients, government & non-government organizations to name a few)

 

4). Market sensing process

 

 

“How a company collects market information and disseminates such information internally”

 

Knowledge retention staff monitors several indicators: frequency with which users view Web pages that contain videos and transcripts, track the origin and number of viewers of videos. Proxies are used to measure the number of hits on each debriefing intranet site.

 

5). Operations management process

 

 

“How a company transforms inputs to outputs”

The implementation of KM system allows external and internal users of the WB resources to exchange/access information.

 

6). Business development process

 

 

“How a company finds ways to grow”

Bank expenditure on knowledge sharing programs and activities over FY97-02 period total just under US$220 million in combined budget and trust fund resources. Network knowledge expenditures over the period have been more that double those of the Regions. Significant amount is allocated in the budget in order for the KM to be improved.

 

7). Strategy development process

 

 

How a company defines its goals and the means to achieve those goals”

 

The WB mission is to fight poverty with passion and professionalism. In order to achieve its objective, the WB needs to continue working in partnerships with the users of KM in order to continue maximizing opportunities for the poorest countries, therefore continue fighting poverty.

 

8). Partner management process

 

 

How a company selects, manages, and maintains relationship with external partners”

 

Staff members are drawn from most member countries with strong academic backgrounds, broad understanding of development issue, international work experience, must be a team player. Employees with experience and expertise in their field are able to help internal & external parties to achieve their core strategy.

 

9). Financial management process

 

 

“How a company deploys its financial resources and allocates capital within the company”

The WB continues to invest in improving KM system. The WB is working on addressing the following challenges: (1) areas of accountability and governance of knowledge, (2) measuring the impact of knowledge sharing both within the WB and with clients & (3) identifying which knowledge and learning initiatives are succeeding.

 

Partnership

In the global fight against poverty the WB has a large array of partners. Due to frequent changes in the knowledge management technology, continuing work to improve its user friendliness and differing user needs, the WB outsourced one of the key programs referred to as “Development Gateway portal” to Development Gateway Foundation,  Development Forum is hosted by the WB. Portal was launched in 2000; it provides simple user interfaces for numerous functions; sharing knowledge and discussing issues, registering and profiling users, accessing projects and statistical databases, joining a topic community, receiving e-mail notifications, searching, and branding community workspaces (APQC 2003). The members of the WB’s development community use Development Forum, an electronic venue, for knowledge sharing and dialogue among members. 

The gateway serves the needs of the public sector, civil society, the private sector, the official donor community to name a few. Virtual communities on gateway are building around major development topics and guided by development experts. Accessible Information on Development Activities (AIDA) is one of the gateway’s sources and is the largest online source of public information on development activities in the world. It stores the information on more that 350,000 planned, current, and completed projects and programs from more than 200 development agencies (APQC 2003). Development Forum is used by program managers as a place to capture and validate internal and external expertise and knowledge by stimulating discussions. See Appendix B for the list of the Bank’s main knowledge-sharing activities, with an indication of Regional, the network, and global programs and activities.

Profit and Growth

In order to assess the efficiency of the whole businesses model or business structure profit and growth is used. The WB is financially sound business. According to APQC, the WB lends approximately $15 billion to $20 billion a year to some 80 poor countries; it makes about $1 billion per year profit, and its bonds are triple A-rated. The WB’s redults have exceeded analysts’ expectations for the past five years of development and evolvement of the knowledge management system.

The Balanced Scorecards 

The balanced scorecard (BSC) is a strategic planning and management system that is used extensively in business and industry, government, and nonprofit organizations worldwide to align business activities to the vision and strategy of the organization, improve internal and external communications, and monitor organization performance against strategic goals (Balanced scorecard organization 2008). 

Sample_of_the_Balanced_Scorecard.JPG

In the Figure 3, the four elements of the BSC include:

  1. Financial criteria are measures or factors that determine the organization’s value to its shareholders (Farhoomand 2005). 
  1. In the customer perspective of the BSC, the core outcome measures include customer satisfaction, customer retention, and customer profitability to name a few.
  2. In the internal business processes perspective, the critical internal processes that enable the pursuit of organizational objectives are identified (Kaplan & Norton 1996).
  3. Learning and growth – the infrastructure that must be in place so that the organization can continue to improve and create value (Farhoomand 2005). 

Financial Criteria 

Operational efficiency measures the performance of the World Bank and corresponds to the financial perspective in BSC (APQC 1998).  It focuses on the World Bank’s stakeholders such as borrowers, lenders and donors. These include first and foremost the taxpayers, as well as bondholders, and other funding sources such as the federal governments or the state governments in the case of countries and cities (APQC 1998). 

In order to address the operational efficiency perspective of the BSC, the World Bank should focus on unit costs, the ratio of administrative to direct service costs and changes in expenditure over time. 

OBJECTIVE

SAMPLE MEASURE

 

1. Use of global information system to establish competitive advantage

 

 

Financial indicators

 

2. E-business technology portfolio management

 

Percentage of old system retired

(Source: CIS8100 Study Book) 

  1. Financial Indicators: One of the biggest challenges for the WB in the next five years is to improve the operational effectiveness of the Bank’s internal knowledge-sharing activities. The Bank has made significant progress in establishing the architecture to support its knowledge initiative. By 2001 the World Bank Group ranked fourth in the Most Admired Knowledge Enterprises awards, which recognizes organizations for their world-class efforts in managing knowledge leading to superior performance (Kagia 2005).  
  2. Percentage of old systems retired: when knowledge management was launched in 1997, content was delivered via fax, e-mail, phone and mail. It was followed by utilization of Lotus Notes; the software used by the WB evolved during the period with theAfricanVirtualUniversity with 33 partner institutions involved. 

Customer Perspective

The customer perspective is a counterbalance to the operational efficiency perspective.

OBJECTIVE

MEASURE

SAMPLE MEASURE

 

1.Customer Satisfaction

 

Data Source: Customer Survey

 

Data Generation: Accomplished by using standardized survey instrument. Individual survey responses are entered into program (Excel Data Reduction for example) which calculates results.

 

 

 

Timeliness: Extent of customer satisfaction with timeliness of response; on-going communications.

 

Quality: Extent of customer satisfaction of quality of supplied information and services delivered by thematic and advisory groups.

 

Percentage of customers satisfied

 

 

 

 

Percentage of customers satisfied

 

2.Effective Service/Partnership

 

Data Source: Customer Survey

 

Data Generation: Accomplished by using standardized survey instrument. Individual survey responses are entered into program (Excel Data Reduction for example) which calculates results.

 

 

Extent of customer satisfaction with the responsiveness, cooperation, and level of communication with the thematic and advisory groups.

 

Percentage of customers satisfied

(Source: Farhoomand 2005) 

Internal Business Processes

OBJECTIVE

SAMPLE MEASURE

 

1. Development and maintenance of the Knowledge Management System

 

 

New system launch, enhancements and standardization of process worldwide

 

2. Project performance base

 

 

Percentage of projects delivered/completed on time

(Source: Farhoomand 2005) 

    1. New system launch, enhancements and standardization of process worldwide: within five year, the WB put in place infrastructure and programs aimed at sharing knowledge within the organization and increasingly with clients and partners. Thematic groups, advisory services, regional and country services were introduced in order for the skills of people to be developed to crate, share and apply knowledge.

 

  1. Percentage of projects delivered/completed on time: Wolfensohn understood well the power of technology and the media. The WB has grown from the entity where initial content was delivered via e-mail, fax, phone queries and paper mail into the world’s most “networked” international organization, at the centre of the global development process (Kagia 2005). 

Learning and growth 

OBJECTIVE

MEASURE

SAMPLE MEASURE

 

1.Quality Workforce

 

Date Source: Career Development data systems

 

Data Generation: Data is tabulated from the listed data system.

 

 

 

 

Percent of certified/qualified personnel meeting/exceeding job requirements.

 

 

Percentage of staff trained to use the Knowledge Management system

 

2. Organization Structured for Continues Improvement

 

Data Source: Manager’s Self-Assessment Survey (Mission Goals)

 

Data Generation: Individual responses are entered into program which calculates results

 

 

Assessment of the level of continues improvement including existence of an effective quality culture, extent of benchmarking and other improvement initiatives, and strategic planning actions.

 

Percentage of managers

(Source: Farhoomand 2005) 

Legacy system 

Legacy is defined as the existing systems, processes, structures, and culture (Farhoomand 2005). In 1996 the WB launched the knowledge management system, witch improved or new tools and activities to capture and share development knowledge.  But there are still three challenges that need to be addressed by the WB: linking more directly to core operational work; capturing lessons and good practices more systematically; and strengthening content management to ensure the quality and operational relevance of distributed knowledge (Gwin 2004). Current structure of internal knowledge-sharing function does not meet the needs of multisectoral operational work (Gwin 2004). Secondly, there is inadequate coordination between network knowledge –sharing activities and country and project management teams (McLellan 2003). 

ICT Infrastructure 

ICT infrastructure of the WB was built up by the Bank over the past six year; new learning and knowledge staff positions were created at various levels of the institution; open, knowledge-sharing culture was fostered. However, the WB has failed to establish adequate processes and incentives for institutionalizing knowledge sharing as well governance arrangements. 

Lack of clearly defined responsibilities and roles including an absence of systematic monitoring and evaluation is the first governance shortcoming.  Responsibilities for the networks’ knowledge-sharing function rest with the sector boards, which have provided minimal directions and oversight (Gwin 2004). Full potential can not be achieved due to lack of coordination and management. This can lead to duplication of effort because decentralized system is used with each group having different methodologies, perspectives and using different tools. 

Secondly, knowledge sharing in the WB remains a largely unmonitored process (McLellan, 2003).  In order for future progress to be tracked, there is the need to devise a system of metrics. There is also need for additional technology improvements in support of the Bank’s operational work (Gwin 2004). Information technology personnel need to work with operational staff to enhance knowledge capture and sharing through the WB’s internal and external Web (Gwin 2004).

 Business to Business (B2B) system integration 

While the transfer of knowledge to the wider international community and clients has always been part of the WB role, it is aimed to expand this function through innovations in the knowledge dimensions. However, challenges must be considered by the WB before the B2B system is to be implemented.  Firstly, operational staff are only gradually starting to see that knowledge sharing is part of their work and becoming knowledge brokers.

The reach of Bank knowledge is said to be limited (Gwin 2004). The WB information is accessible only by computer and it is not available in local languages. Clients indicate that there is also a “government bias” in disseminating information (Gwin 2004). The Bank’s clients are presented with already available solutions that are not adapted to circumstances of individual country. 

Standards and Security 

The main goal of information security is for the WB’s information to remain confidential; information must be secured from disclosure to unauthorized recipients. At the same time, integrity of the information must be protected, in other words information can only be changed or altered by authorized sources.  The WB needs to ensure that agreements made electronically can be proven to have been made and organization must be in a position to trace actions of an individual to that individual (Wilson1991). 

The challenge that the WB faces is that networks need to have common procedures and standards for tracking, monitoring and reporting of the progress of activities and programs. Each operation within the WB must follow established procedures and policies to ensure integrity, quality and adherence to the Bank’s mission, strategic goals and corporate priorities. They must be subject to extensive review while being formulated and to compliance monitoring after being approved (IBRD 2003). Data security and integrity so important that no single person in the WB should have the authority to read, delete, add and change data unless someone else is responsible for reviewing the activities. The WB needs to have necessary procedures in place to prevent both deliberate attempts to manipulate the system and unintentional errors. This is challenging for the WB considering the institutions of the World Bank Group together have a staff of about 10,000 professionals and support personnel (IBRD 2003). 

Recommendations to the CEO of the WB. 

Since 1996 the WB has done significant amount of work in order to establish new knowledge-sharing programs and activities and upgrade its information technology capacity. It led to the creation of knowledge-sharing and more open culture within organization. However, there are two shortcomings that will affect achieving the WB purpose of enhancing client use of knowledge and these will need to be addressed by the WB in the next five years. 

The first is the failure to take the strategy’s knowledge aggregation and general dissemination phase to the next level – providing direct support for task teams in their operational work (Gwin 2004). It is recommended that three changes are introduced in order for the WB to move to this higher level: advisory services and thematic groups need to devote more time and attention to working directly with frontline staff in support of non-lending and lending services. While operational teams need to do more to capture and feed back more systematic lessons and good practices from on-the-ground work; and Bankwide efforts need to be made to improve content management of distributed knowledge to ensure quality, timeliness, and – most important – operational relevance (Gwin 2004). 

Secondly, specific timetables or objectives have not been set up in relation to the external knowledge-sharing phase of the WB knowledge initiative. Consequently, effective coordination in implementing the knowledge initiative has not become routine among corporate, network and Regional units (Nelson 1995). Currently, the task managers, country teams and the Regional units fail to develop a more a strategic approach to the knowledge dimensions of the WB’s service to its clients. Task teams should be given the explicit responsibilities and accompanying incentives for implementing the strategic objectives (Gwin 2004). This way the incorporation of the global knowledge initiatives will be integrated into country projects and programs. 

It is important to note that senior management needs to quid mainstreaming of knowledge initiative for knowledge sharing to become a way of doing business. In order for the WB to fully realize the knowledge initiative’s potential, to empower clients to meet their development goals and to enhance the operations of the Bank, following three sets of actions are recommended:

  • It is crucial for management to exercise greater strategic direction and oversight over the institution’s knowledge processes, while recognizing that all units across the WB are responsible for making knowledge sharing a way of doing business (Nelson 1995). Management should do the following:
    • Ensure that incentives and responsibilities are aligned, particularly at the task manager level.
    • Accountabilities and responsibilities for integrating knowledge sharing into the WB’s core business process of network; regional and corporate units must be clearly defined (Feinstein, Pitman & Ingram 2005).
    • Long-term plan for Global Programs and Partnerships Council should be prepared and instituted by the WB. The Bank should include financial plan, responsibilities of its different units for managing future involvement and clarification of its forward involvement as well as integration of the Global Programs and Partnerships Council into WB country programs. 
  • Network and Regional knowledge-sharing activities should tightly link to core business processes and move beyond knowledge aggregation and access to increased focus on knowledge adoption, adaptation, and use (Gwin 2004). More specifically:
    • Networks should set clear objectives for advisory service, anchor and thematic groups supporting operational teams.
    • Responsibilities in capturing, validation and application of lessons learned and good practices need to be straightened between Regions and Networks. 
  • Frameworks should be established for monitoring and evaluating network, Regional/country, and global knowledge-sharing programs and activities (McLellan 2003). These involves:
    • Defining procedures, roles, and responsibilities for monitoring progress and evaluating achievements against the stated objectives (Gwin 2004).
    • It is crucial for the WB to have supporting indicators (ig. Benchmarks of progress, monitorable targets and baselines) and outcome objectives in place.
    • Depending on the outcome of its ongoing baseline assessment of the performance of sector boards, the Quality Assurance Group (QAG) should continue to review at appropriate intervals the quality of the networks’ knowledge sharing. 

Conclusion 

In conclusion, the WB shows that in order for an organization to be effective, a knowledge-sharing system needs to be tightly linked to the institution’s core business strategy; knowledge sharing is increasingly becoming a way of doing business. Even though, the WB followed a very decentralized process for the allocation of resources for knowledge management strategy and the ICT challenges had to be overcome, knowledge management has allowed the Bank to become a global development partner by sharing local and global knowledge. The importance of knowledge sharing is evident; it is important not only for staff development within the organization but also for the external players (i.e. distributor, alliance partners, customers, and vendors to name a few).    

Annotated Bibliography 

American Productivity & Quality Centre (2003) ‘The World Bank Profile’, Washington: American Productivity & Quality Centre. 

This publication about the WB is produced by the American Productivity & Quality Centre (APQC), which is an internationally recognized resource for performance and process improvement. The WB profile illustrates researches from the early days of improvement efforts through to the organization’s current outlook as it evolves and experiences successes. The APQC helps organizations to succeed in a competitive marketplace, to adapt to rapidly changing environment and build better ways to operate. 

The intended audience for this publication is very broad, from students to industry researches and other professionals, who are interested in gaining preliminary and detailed information about the WB. Information used in the publication is trustworthy because it is derived from six consortium benchmarking studies conducted over seven years and the WB presentations at APQC conferences. The publication is written by the APQC and its researches, who have been involved in identifying best practices and discovering effective methods of organizational improvements for over 25 years. 


Farhoomand, A 2005, Managing e-Business Transformation: global perspective, Palgrave McMillan,New York. 

This book highlights what is involved in e-business transformation. It begins with outlining e-business strategy formation, continues with infrastructure development, process management and implementation. It builds on established economic and business theories and concepts and illustrates their application on real-life case studies.  This book is easy to comprehend and provides a reader with succinct introduction to managing e-business transformation.   

This book is not only intended for students to be used in academic setting but also for industry researcher and other professionals, who wish to broaden their knowledge or obtain preliminary understanding of process integration and synchronization in transformation of an organization into an Internet-based enterprise. 

The information covered in the book is reliable because it was written by Farhoomand, Professor and Director of the Center for Asian Business Cases at theSchoolofBusinessand Economics at theUniversityofHong Kong,Hong Kong. However, this book will not form the basis for my research; however it will provide useful information for my research on the World Bank. 


Gwin, C 2004, Sharing Knowledge: innovations and remaining challenges, World Bank Publications, Washington. 

Varieties of people were involved in discussions and comments on evaluation of sharing knowledge strategy in the WB. The report introduces launching of knowledge initiative and evaluation of design. It follows on with outlining the strategy’s strength and design shortcomings. It also looks at internal knowledge sharing as mean to improving the WB operations; sharing knowledge with clients and partners and the supporting institutional infrastructure. The information is supported and visually illustrated by annexes, figures and tables. 

Considering the caliber of people and organizations involved in the report, such as the WB staff, many government officials and civil society representatives interviewed in Bangladesh, Brazil, Poland to name a few, the information in this report is accurate and truthful. This report is really useful to a reader because it gives experts opinion from inside of the organization on the knowledge sharing launching and implementation, and remaining challenges to overcome by the WB. The Sharing Knowledge report supports recommendation part of my report and selective tables are used in appendix part of the report. 

One should refer to American Productivity & Quality Centre (APQC) publication, “The World Bank Profile” for in depth information on the WB’s transformation into the “Knowledge Bank”. Unlike Gwin’s report on “Sharing Knowledge” that indicates various aspects of the WB current perspectives and challenges; APQC gives detailed information on how organization’s focus evolved, faced challenges and highlights achieved outcomes. 


The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (2003) ‘A guide to the World Bank’,WashingtonD.C.: The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development. 

A Guide to the WB explains how the WB is organized including in depth information about the five World Bank Group Institutions, how they operate and what they do.  Information in the guide is accompanied with tools such as WB Web site, annual reports and print publications that cover a wide range of topics.  It is indicated throughout the text where additional information for learning about the World Bank can be found. This book covers wide range activities conducted by the World Bank Group and directs the reader interested in more detailed information toward Web site resources or publications. This is the World Bank Group publication; considering the source, information provided in the guide on the organization is true and accurate. 

I think that this book is ideal for people who are not familiar with the WB and need a starting point for more in-depth inquiries into subjects of particular interest. However, it provides a lot of information about the WB that I think is not really relevant to my report; information from guide will add some key points to my report. 

List of References

American Productivity & Quality Centre (2002) ‘Retaining Valuable Kowledge: Proactive Strategies to Deal with a Shifting Work Force’,WashingtonD.C: American Productivity & Quality Centre. 

American Productivity & Quality Centre (2003) ‘World Bank Profile’, Washington: American Productivity & Quality Centre. 

Balanced Scorecard Institute, 2005, What is the Balanced Scorecard?, viewed 21 May 2008, <http://www.balancedscorecard.org/BSCResources/AbouttheBalancedScorecard/tabid/55/Default.aspx> 

Farhoomand, A 2005, Managing e-Business Transformation: global perspective, Palgrave McMillan,New York. 

Feinstein, O.N., Pitman, G.K. & Ingram. G.K 2005, Evaluating Development Effectiveness: World Bank series on evaluation and development, Transaction Publishers,London. 

Gwin, C 2004, Sharing Knowledge: innovations and remaining challenges, World Bank Publications, Washington. 

Kagia, R 2005, Balancing the Development Agenda: the transformation of the World Bank Under James Wolfensohn 1995-2005, World Bank Publications,WashingtonDC. 

McLellan E. P 2003, The World Bank: Overview and Current Issues, Nova Science Publishers Inc,New York. 

Nelson , P.J 1995, The World Bank and Non-Governmental Organizations: the limits of apolitical development, MacMillan Press Ltd,London. 

Kaplan R.S & Norton D.P 1996, Using the Balanced Scorecards as a Strategic Management System, Harvard Business Review,Boston. 

The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (2003) ‘A guide to the World Bank’,WashingtonD.C.: The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development. 

Wikipedia – the Free Encyclopedia, 2006, World Bank, viewed on 22nd May 2008, <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_bank> 

Wikipedia – the Free Encyclopedia, 2006, Customer Value Proposition, viewed 20th May 2008, <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value_proposition> 

9. Appendix A. Knowledge – Sharing Chronology (1996 – 2002) 

 

1996

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

 

Strategy

Milestones

 

 

President’s

Annual Meeting

speech features

“Knowledge

Bank”

 

 

Strategic

Compact

focuses on

retooling

knowledge

base

 

 

World Development

Report focuses on

knowledge for

development

 

Knowledge

management

included in

World Bank

Mission

statement

 

 

Strategic

Forum

identifies

knowledge

sharing as key action area

 

 

Knowledge-sharing framework proposed

 

 

Individual

Programs & activities

 

 

Thematic groups & advisory services launched

 

 

 

 

100 thematic groups and 16 advisory services established: 4 of 6 Regions have databases and knowledge-sharing activities

 

 

Global Development Network launched

 

Global Development Learning Network launched

 

Development Gateway launched

 

 

Institutional

Infrastructure

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Governance

 

 

Networks established with knowledge management mandate; knowledge management unit established in Information Solution Group

 

 

Knowledge

and learning

council established

 

 

 

 

Knowledge management unit moved from ISG to Operational Core Services

 

 

 

Strategic Compact assessment of progress; knowledge management unit moved to World Bank Institute

 

VP

Knowledge

Steering

Committee

established

 

Technology

 

 

External Web site posted

 

 

 

 

Field offices linked to global communications system

 

 

Intranet revamped; Lotus Notes launched

 

 

 

 

People/ resources

 

 

 

 

Budget for knowledge management allocated

 

 

Knowledge sharing becomes indicator in staff Overall Performance Evaluations

 

 

 

 

 

 

 (Source: Gwin 2004)