All Blog Posts

Member blogs include thematic articles of 600-800 words on books or research by members, or human interest stories by members. To submit a thematic blog write to the relevant TG chair; for human interest blogs write to 1818society@wbgalumni.org, with “Blog Proposal” in the subject line.

Vinod Prakash, Service Before Self: A Journey of Conviction, Courage, and Commitment
February 23, 2024 | Uma Lele

It is a pleasure to write this blog about a book written by a colleague, Vinod Prakash, who retired from the World

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The Bank’s Ambitious Gender Strategy
February 1, 2024 | Frank Vogl*

The World Bank is on the cusp of finalizing a 2024-2030 gender development strategy. It draws on the experiences of the last

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If You Came This Way
February 1, 2024 | James Brown

My interview at the Bank in the winter of 1970-71 began with the YP Coordinator saying, “Canadian, huh. That won’t hurt you.”

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Chile’s experience transitioning from an energy supply crisis to major investments in renewables
January 18, 2024 | Miguel Schloss*

There are times when crises can provide a sober warning about unaddressed problems than all discourses and learned studies. The crisis detonated

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Tackling Climate Change: The Bank’s Poisoned Chalice?
January 12, 2024 | S. Ramachandran

After much wrangling at periodic gatherings in Rio, Copenhagen and Paris, governments have agreed to reduce emissions that cause global warming. Many

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Stories from My 14 Years at the World Bank (1979-1993)*
January 11, 2024 | Nancy Birdsall

I was inspired by the November 29 CGD event on women’s leadership at the international financial institutions (IFIs), featuring a presentation of

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Changes in Bank Retirees’ Longevity
December 13, 2023 | Anis Dani & Brenda Bermudez

Two years ago, Bill McGreevy had analyzed mortality data of WBG retirees for an article in the Quarterly. After a gap of

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Are days of dollar dominance numbered in global commerce and finance?
December 10, 2023 | Istvan Dobozi*

Historically, there were two national currencies – the British pound and the Dutch gulden – that played an important role as world

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Rosalynn Carter’s Invitation to Me to Work for President Carter on the Global Development Initiative
December 7, 2023 | Uma Lele *

Rosalynn Carter, the past first lady of the United States, who passed away on November 19, 2023, invited me to work with

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Business Jargon: A Trip Down Memory Lane
November 1, 2023 | Joseph Barone

Business Jargon “are words or phrases used by business employees to convey unique ideas and directions.”[1] The World Bank, like every other

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Secret Tuscany (an 1818 Society tour)
November 1, 2023 | Marisa Diaz-Etchevehere

Although I have been to Tuscany in Italy several times in the past, when I saw a tour called “Secret Tuscany” advertised

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Canadian Rockies CMH Summer 2023
October 6, 2023 | Xiao Ye

Terry, my husband, and I joined the Canadian Rockies hiking trip in July. We spent a day and half in Calgary, which

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Original World Bank Cost-Efficiency Indicators: Then & Now
October 5, 2023 | Bill Katzenstein

The Bank’s first review of its expenses in relation to lending, conducted in 1955, centered on three graphs illustrating the record of

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The Lucrative Dangers of Tobacco Farming [1]
August 1, 2023 | Uma Lele

The global spread of tobacco production and use is like gun proliferation in the US. It is one of those evils that

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Destruction of World Bank-supported Hydropower Plant in Ukraine
August 1, 2023 | Istvan Dobozi

Ukraine has considerable hydropower resource potential. It operates nine major hydropower plants, accounting for about 10 per cent of the country’s total

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Pakistan: Hunza – Batura – Fairy Meadows: A hidden gem
July 14, 2023 | Miriam Schneidman

Sipping on a cup of chai on the balcony of the Raikot Sarai lodge while gazing at Nanga Parbat, the ninth highest

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Bidii Yetu – Cross Africa Odyssey to Raise Awareness of the Potential of People with Disabilities
July 14, 2023 | Matthew Gamser*

A year ago I reconnected with an old friend and former colleague who, due to a hereditary disease, progressively lost feeling in

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Toward A More Effective WBG Response To Global Challenges
July 1, 2023 | René Costa

The World Bank Group (WBG), a long-standing development lender, is facing criticism for not being broad enough in its mandate to address

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Remembering Korea: Moments from the K-Tour of May 2023
July 1, 2023 | Chad Leechor

On a cool sunny day, we gather at the Incheon Airport near Seoul, to start a stint of energetic hiking plus cultural

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One Hundred and Fifty Shades of Green
June 14, 2023 | Preeti S. Ahuja

Just as my fingers finished typing “One Hundred Shades of Green” – a name I thought to be apt for my microblog

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A UNIVERSAL FINANCIAL FRAMEWORK FOR GLOBAL CONCERNS
June 1, 2023 | René Costa

“While there are countless solutions to tackling what has been described by the UN as the “existential threat” of our times, it

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Bhutan: Land of the Thunder Dragon
June 1, 2023 | Jianyuan Zhu

Better to see something once than hear about it a thousand times. – Asian Proverb Dubbed as the “Land of the Thunder

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Bhutan Trek 2023 – A Trekking Newbie’s Perspective
May 22, 2023 | Heidi Hennrich-Hanson

Patience is not the ability to wait, but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting – Buddha quote After 3

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The U.S. Inflation Reduction Act of 2022
May 16, 2023 | Chas Feinstein *

Mark Twain famously said: “Everybody talks about the weather but nobody does anything about it.” As someone who has been following the

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A Tale of Two Microstates: Ideas for A Climate-Smart & Nutrition-Sensitive Future
April 27, 2023 | Preeti S. Ahuja

While the focus on the key purveyors of a changing climate is rightly increasing, it is important to keep in view simultaneously,

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Lessons Learned from Life as a Consultant: Dealing with a Client who Refuses to Pay
April 18, 2023 | Joe Barone

When I left the Bank in March 2018, I decided to hang out my shingle as a consultant. Although the first nine

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Priorities for Action in the Face of Runaway Climate Change
April 13, 2023 | Vinod Thomas*

Climate change presents an extreme gulf between scientific knowledge of the risk and policy action to tackle it. Technical solutions and economic

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The Spiral Stairs
March 1, 2023 | Jim Brown*

With the Boeing announcement of the last 747 rolling off the line in Everett Washington this week, I realized that it has

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Is Free Trade Dead?
February 8, 2023 | Istvan Dobozi

Free trade is one of the few economic paradigms that unite economists of all ideological and political stripes: reduction of international trade

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How the Dollar-a-Day Poverty Line Came into Being
January 26, 2023 | Lyn Squire *

Even after thirty years, there are still misconceptions about how the dollar-a-day standard used to measure poverty in the developing world came

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A day with Pelé
January 4, 2023 | John Muir*

The late 60’s had become a busy period for me.  At the request of South American friends, I helped establish and then captain

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Food Security, Poverty Reduction and Economic Transformation: Time for Sustained Action by G20
December 9, 2022 | Uma Lele*

In 2022, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen called on many occasions the need to strengthen global collaboration for tackling food insecurity, most notably

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17 days Trekking the Tsum Valley and around the Manaslu in Nepal
December 7, 2022 | Maryvonne Plessis-Fraissard

The trip was planned for 2020 as a following chapter to the Annapurna Trek. In one of the many updates of the

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WBG Retirees play a HUGE role in the Community Connections Campaign
December 2, 2022 | Clare Evans*

I was born in Washington, DC, and I grew up in the DC metro area.  I have loved and enjoyed this wonderful

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Eating – and walking – our way around Türkiye
November 15, 2022 | Lesley Shneier*

One morning before the crack of dawn, we stumbled bleary-eyed from our cave hotel, to be taken to the hot air balloon

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Playing with atomic fire in Ukraine
October 1, 2022 | Istvan Dobozi

Ukraine has already experienced how dangerous a nuclear power plant can be. In 1986, the world’s worst nuclear accident took place at

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1818 Northumberland Hike: July 29-August 5, 2022
October 1, 2022 | Sandra Hadler, Chair Florida Chapter

Way back in July 2019, 30 some 1818 hikers and partners spent a week hiking in the Cotswolds. It was such a

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“Yes, We Can”
October 1, 2022 | Dhamayanthy Padmanathan

This is a verse from a very popular Girl Scout song ‘Yes, We Can’: “Can a woman be a doctor? Yes, she

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Cherishing what matters the most……
September 9, 2022 | Tahseen Sayed

You land after almost 6 years at an airport and waiting at immigration, you know that you have come home! You enter

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Hiking the Iconic Vistas of Norway
September 1, 2022 | Anis Dani

It started off as a lark and ended as the trip of a lifetime. During a high altitude hike to Nepal and

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My trip to the Canadian Arctic Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada
September 1, 2022 | Alexander Keyserlingk

Introduction I wanted to go north to see how people live in the northern part of the North American continent under such

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Making Fitness a Habit
August 1, 2022 | Susan Dubas

You already know that exercise is good for you.   Countless studies highlight the benefits of regular physical activity.  It prevents disease, improves

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Conservation of a World Heritage site (Abiseo Park) and public forest land in the Province of San Martin, Peruvian Amazon
August 1, 2022 | Kevin Cleaver and Maria Nikolov

We retired from the World Bank in 2006.  We purchased and currently own a farm located immediately next to Peru’s Rio Abiseo

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Mapping Carbon Neutrality from Words to Deeds
August 1, 2022 | Miguel Schloss

Who would have thought that after 30 years since the UN Convention on Climate Change, the gap between the agreed goals, and

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THE UKRAINE TRAGEDY IS NOW GLOBAL: Impact on food security
July 1, 2022 | Nadim Khouri

On June 3, 2022, the 1818 Society Thematic Group on Agriculture and Rural Development (ARD TG) hosted a presentation on the impact

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Hiking El Camino de Costa Rica
July 1, 2022 | Kathia Coupry and Hugh Sloan

In April of 2022, nine of us set out on a 10-day hiking trip on El Camino de Costa Rica, from the

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Comity: Multilateralism in the New Cold War.
July 1, 2022 | Frank Vibert

Recently I gave a webinar to an 1818 Society audience on my new book ‘Comity; Multilateralism in the New Cold War’, (Edward

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Pricing the Urban Water Supply Service to Please (almost) Everybody
June 1, 2022 | Alain Loccusol

Pricing the urban water supply service is a complex exercise that aims at achieving competing objectives. Cost recovery.  Piped water has some

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The Art Market at Times of Global Uncertainty
June 1, 2022 | Andrés Solimano

We live in uncertain times: the world is emerging from the main effects of the Covid-19 pandemic but is affected now by

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DIG DEEP: Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming
June 1, 2022 | Diana Corbin

When I tell someone I have completed the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming, they ask: WHAT is that? WHY would anyone

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Social Development in the World Bank
May 3, 2022 | Scott Guggenheim

“To give you an idea of how it felt then while trying to bring anthropology’s message to a rather agnostic and sceptical

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A Passion for Home-made Bread
May 1, 2022 | Mark Woodward

In retirement I have become passionate about baking naturally fermented bread with freshly milled, whole grain flour.  When I retired some 6

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Food for All
April 8, 2022 | Uma Lele, Manmohan Agarwal, Brian Baldwin, and Sambuddha Goswami

Our book arose out of several mutually reinforcing concerns: Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were unlikely to be achieved by 2030, given the

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The Urgent Need to Cut Super Climate Pollutants Now!
April 7, 2022 | Alan S. Miller

I was privileged to work on climate change issues in the World Bank Group for 16 years, from 1997 to 2014.  Since

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Volunteering: A Life’s Inspiration
April 6, 2022 | Mavee Park and Mike James

Secrets to a long life? Pick your poison or passion: from drinking whiskey, eating bacon(!), exercise, hanging out with friends,… As Ralph Burgess Tarrant, a 110yr old

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