• Feb 21, 2018

    World Bank refinancing of Uganda’s Bujagali hydropower scheme under the spotlight

    “The request for refinancing presents an important opportunity to finally achieve resolution on a number of these outstanding issues … we urge the World Bank Group to take this important opportunity to demonstrate its commitment to accountability and ensure access to remedy for project-affected peoples,” said a letter sent to World Bank chiefs earlier this month which was signed by more than 20 local and international NGOs, including the Accountability Counsel, Bank Information Center, Bretton Woods Project, Friends of the Earth US, and International Rivers.
  • Feb 20, 2018

    Opinion: Jim Kim’s World Bank is a setup for the poor

    Addressing harm caused by bank projects, promoting inclusion of vulnerable groups, and ensuring accountability should be Kim’s most urgent priority. Once these fundamental problems are addressed, the bank can better meet its own objectives and deliver value to the private sector as it too looks to create impact.
  • Feb 2, 2018

    China Moves Toward Accountability for Overseas Financing

    As the U.S. government retreats from leadership on climate, the Chinese are stepping up, both with new “green” policies and a leading role in finance, at home and abroad. This shift has notable implications for the millions of people affected by Chinese overseas investment in dams, mines, and pipelines.
  • Feb 1, 2018

    The Human Rights Ripple Effect

    Human rights successes are hard-won, require the coordinated efforts of many people working in solidarity — often across backgrounds, sectors, and even international borders—and are often overlooked by mainstream media, which focuses on the disastrous here, now, and clickable.
  • Jan 22, 2018

    Disappointing dialogue in Sindhuli provides lessons for community participation in Nepal’s development

    Democracy and development had a landmark year in Nepal in 2017. Nepal held local, provincial and national parliamentary elections, which were celebrated for being the first conducted under the new federal constitution which, however, is criticized for being regressive and discriminatory towards Indigenous Peoples and Madhesis.
  • Jan 4, 2018

    Opinion: A critical look at the IFC’s new incentives framework

    To help staff make better decisions, the International Finance Corporation is introducing a new incentives framework, which will reward achievements in development outcomes. The new framework may be a welcome step, but the World Bank Group, which includes the IFC, has said incentives will reward staff on their ability to mobilize private sector funding. It’s critical that the IFC include in their rewards scheme recognition of staff that respect human rights.
  • Nov 29, 2017

    Nimble Fingers, Stifled Voices

    Is a World Bank funded project stifling agency and voices of its female employees? As diplomats, civil society organizations, governments and businesses gather in Geneva to talk about the role of business to respect and protect human rights, a company – backed by the World Bank – is failing at both. Amalgamated Plantations Private Limited (APPL), the second largest producer and supplier of tea in India, is a joint venture of the Tata Group and the World Bank’s private sector side, the International Finance Corporation (IFC).
  • Nov 28, 2017

    From Geneva to Guwahati: demanding fair wages for Assam’s tea workers

    On 27 November, throngs of people attended the first day of the UN Forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland. The three-day forum will see participants from business, government, and civil society have heated debates – over hot cups of tea and coffee – on how to protect human rights in a business context.
  • Nov 7, 2017

    World Bank urged to improve lives of Assam’s tea workers

    The World Bank has been urged by six Indian and international NGOs on Monday to improve the lives of tea workers to ensure fulfillment of its commitment to protect workers through its investment in tea plantations in the State. As per a report issued by Human Rights Watch, the NGOs delivered a petition to the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank’s private sector arm, for urgent remedy of the situation.  
  • Sep 29, 2017

    Deafening noise from flights over Fontibón in Bogotá, Colombia. Something went wrong with the IDB

    The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) describes itself as a champion of integrity and transparency, working with its Latin American and the Caribbean member countries to strengthen governance and rule of law at local and national levels. As a public institution committed to sustainable development, it has endorsed the principle that “environmental issues are best handled with the participation of all concerned citizens.” However, as the residents of Fontibón, a neighborhood in Bogotá, Colombia, recently learned, the bank does not universally apply these standards to its own activities.
  • Sep 15, 2017

    Demystifying the Theory of Change Process

    The idea that nonprofits should develop a theory of change has been widely embraced in recent years, and funders have helped drive the momentum. In fact, many funders now require that nonprofits submit a theory of change document with grant requests for all the reasons Paul Brest outlined in his seminal article, “The Power of Theories of Change.”
  • Sep 13, 2017

    Labor rights progress under threat across Asia

    It has been six years since the United Nations published its first set of corporate governance standards aimed at curbing human rights abuses in international supply chains. On Sept. 21, the U.N. Global Compact Leaders Summit in New York, bringing together leaders from government, business and civil society, will assess what progress has been made.
  • Sep 13, 2017

    Are Multilateral Development Banks Respecting the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in Development?

    This month marks the 10th anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). This landmark international document, though imperfect, contains important provisions for countries to protect the right of Indigenous Peoples to freely pursue their economic, social, and cultural development.
  • Aug 29, 2017

    Human Rights Activists Want More Workers to Participate in Meeting

    Kolkata – Ahead of the annual general meetings of Amalgamated Plantations Private Limited (AAPL) a Tata and World Bank owned tea company that runs 25 tea estates in Assam and Bengal – to be held in Kolkata on Tuesday a group of human rights activists have called for more participation of tea workers.
  • Aug 9, 2017

    Devex: How a group of Mongolian herders took on a mining giant — and won

    Tending camels in the Gobi desert — moving them to fresh grazing pastures in the spring and summer, and to shelter in the winter — has been a way of life for families in Mongolia for thousands of years. But cycles of freezing winters and dry summers — a natural phenomenon which the herders call the “dzud” — are ravaging the already inhospitable terrain with increasing frequency as a result of climate change, leaving millions of livestock dead from cold or starvation.
  • Aug 9, 2017

    The Hill: Fostering trust in World Bank trust funds through accountability

    Fostering trust in World Bank trust funds through accountability In July, the House Financial Services Committee moved a bill containing reforms to foster accountability at the World Bank, where the United States is the largest shareholder. The bill concerns the United States’ contribution to the International Development Association, through which the World Bank makes loans to poor countries.  
  • Aug 3, 2017

    Recap of the OECD Forum on Responsible Business: Good consultation cuts risk to business

    Multinational businesses operate across a spectrum of regulatory environments and in diverse community settings. Failure to consult these communities and respect their rights in core operations can prove costly for international investors, the companies in which they invest and multinational corporations. Companies can save money and time and curb reputational risk by ensuring that human rights are an integrated part of their operations and investor due diligence.
  • Jun 15, 2017

    This lawyer helps Mongolian herders and Indian tea farmers fight injustice

    In Peru, communities felt they were being harmed by an oil company. In Mexico, people were dealing with the effects of a hydroelectric project. Those were the first cases lawyer Natalie Bridgeman Fields took, helping communities seeking compensation from large-scale developers.  
  • May 22, 2017

    Landmark community dialogue in Nepal: Is the World Bank learning?

    Communities in Sindhuli, Nepal, affected by the World Bank-funded Khimti Dhalkebar Transmission Line (KDTL) have cause to celebrate. Since 2009, they have been raising their concerns about the health, safety and economic impacts of the project, and asking for adequate consultation, information disclosure, and mitigation of impacts.
  • May 19, 2017

    Lowenstein Clinic Releases Report on World Bank Inspection Panel

    The Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic at Yale Law School has released a paper raising concerns about procedural changes at the World Bank’s Inspection Panel.