Children in Haiti are born into harsh conditions, and malnutrition is widespread, taking a devastating human and economic toll.1 To combat malnutrition, the government of Haiti approached the World Bank for help in strengthening the country’s nutritional security and safety net programs. Haiti chose to participate in a Bank-supported knowledge exchange with Chile, El Salvador, Colombia, Madagascar, and Rwanda.
The Government of Indonesia was seeking options for local government infrastructural development in its growing urban areas as means to support its urban development agenda and implementation of decentralization. The Government participated in an exchange with Colombia, which was recognized for its experiences with fiscal decentralization, creating and managing municipal development funds, and monitoring and evaluating fund transfers.
The Government of Colombia sought to strengthen the capacity of its Bank of Public Investment Projects. Weak capacity and systems made it difficult to manage projects and coordinate among subnational governments in the planning and execution of public investment projects. The opportunity for a knowledge exchange with Peru presented Colombia with the direction it needed to improve the strategic vision of BPIN.
The commitment of the Metropolitan Municipality of Quito (MMQ) to provide access to adequate sustainable public services has been undermined by its inefficient and financially dependent enterprises. Through an exchange, the Municipality of Medellin and Empresas Públicas de Medellin (EPM) shared best practices and lessons learned from their administration modernization process. As a result, MMQ enhanced its knowledge about corporate governance and developed action plans for reforms.
To strengthen municipal infrastructure financing as part of a larger urban development plan, Vietnam participated in an exchange with Colombia. The Vietnamese learned about the institutional, legal, regulatory, and operational frameworks of municipal development funds (MDFs). Thus, they gained skills to develop policy recommendations for a legal framework and an implementation approach for an MDF-type entity for Vietnam.
Honduras sought to minimize the adverse impacts of natural disasters by including disaster risk management (DRM) and environmental considerations into overall development and land use planning at the national, regional, and local levels. A study tour in Colombia, combined with two workshops in Honduras, led officials to develop an Action Plan that outlines immediate and long-term steps to better define institutional responsibilities and enhance technical assistance to municipalities to achieve resilient development planning.
In a strategy to strengthen the coffee sector in Burundi and Rwanda, both countries demonstrated interest in implementing shade-grown coffee programs that will promote sustainable economic development and redress land degradation. Putting in place such programs required increased stakeholder ownership and specific technical and organizational skills; Colombia and Ethiopia shared such experiences in knowledge exchanges with Burundi and Rwanda.
Bolivia recognized during the preparation and implementation of the National Population and Housing Census (NPHC) and the National Agricultural Census (NAC), that there was a need to strengthen its statistical and information systems for monitoring and accountability. With help from the World Bank an exchange was organized that focused on strengthening Bolivia’s statistical capacity and informational base for better evidence-based, decision-making practices.
Regional, provincial, and municipal officials from Peru’s Cusco Region engaged in an exchange with Colombian officials to learn about innovative solid waste management models, including for contracts and service administration. This exchange helped regional and local governments analyze options, reach agreement on appropriate models for their jurisdictions, and plan solid waste investments under the Bank-financed Cusco Regional Development Project.