Global Governance 6 (2000), 279–318 The World Bank Inspection Panel: Lessons from the First Five Years Jonathan A. Fox n 1993, the World Bank’s board of directors responded to international environmental and human rights critics by creating a precedent-setting Ipublic accountability mechanism. Local-global civil society advocacy networks found allies in donor governments, and their message resonated with internal World Bank concerns about the need to improve the effective- ness of its investments. Through the Inspection Panel, citizens of develop- ing countries can now make direct grievances regarding the environmental and social costs of World Bank projects. Among multilateral organizations, the World Bank permits the greatest degree of citizen access. Composed of distinguished, non–World Bank development experts, the panel is a transna- tional entity embedded within a multilateral institution. On balance, it has been a remarkably autonomous body, permitting people negatively affected by Bank projects to gain some degree of diplomatic standing, potential transnational public interest allies, media access, and even the possibility of some tangible concessions. In spite of its limits, the World Bank’s Inspec- tion Panel is one of its most tangible institution-wide policy changes in re- sponse to almost two decades of environmental and human rights criticism.
Global Governance: A Review of Multilateralism and International Organizations – Brill
Published: Aug 3, 2000