Development: Advancement through International Organizations

CIGI Paper No. 31

May 5, 2014

The familiar world of international organizations concerned with the advancement of development has been upended by two phenomena: the emergence of sustained economic success in the developing world, and the international financial and economic crisis that has gripped much of the industrialized world since 2008. This paper examines the history of international organizations focusing on development, including the Bretton Woods organizations, the UN system and the regional development banks, and considers the parallel emergence of foundations and the role of international development actors. The authors conclude that the prognosis for organizations caught in this transitional stage in global economic governance can only be uncertain. 

About the Authors

Rohinton P. Medhora is a CIGI distinguished fellow, professor of practice at McGill University, and an expert in international economic relations, innovation policy, development economics and governance.

David M. Malone joined the United Nations University on March 1, 2013 as its sixth rector. In that role, he holds the rank of Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations.