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Global_Issues_for_Global_Citizens_An_Introduction_…_—-_1_INTRODUCTION_TO_GLOBAL_ISSUES.pdf

Global_Issues_for_Global_Citizens_An_Introduction_…_—-_1_INTRODUCTION_TO_GLOBAL_ISSUES.pdf

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Introduction to Global Issues

VINAY BHARGAVA

More than at any other time in history, the future of humankind isbeing shaped by issues that are beyond any one nation’s abilityto solve. Climate change, avian flu, financial instability, terrorism, waves ofmigrants and refugees, water scarcities, disappearing fisheries, stark andseemingly intractable poverty—all of these are examples of global issues whosesolution requires cooperation among nations. Each issue seems at first to belittle connected to the next; the problems appear to come in all shapes andfrom all directions. But if one reflects a moment on these examples, somecommon features soon become apparent:

■ Each issue affects a large number of people on different sides ofnational boundaries.

■ Each issue is one of significant concern, directly or indirectly, to all ormost of the countries of the world, often as evidenced by a majorUnited Nations (UN) declaration or the holding of a global conferenceon the issue.

■ Each issue has implications that require a global regulatory approach;no one government has the power or the authority to impose a solu-tion, and market forces alone will not solve the problem.

These commonalities amount almost to a definition of global issue, andawareness of them will help throughout this book in identifying other suchissues besides those named above. First, however, a few other definitions anddistinctions will further clarify just what we mean by global issues.

I would like to thank Cinnamon Dornsife, Michael Treadway, Jean-François Rischard, and AsliGurkan for their advice and comments on earlier versions of this chapter.

Bhargava, V. K. (Ed.). (2006). Global issues for global citizens : An introduction to key development challenges. World Bank Publications.Created from ashford-ebooks on 2022-05-07 03:04:30.

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Some DefinitionsGlobal issues, globalization, and global public goods are related but differingconcepts. Globalization generally refers to the increasing integration ofeconomies around the world, particularly through trade, production chains(where parts for a final good, such as an automobile, are produced in onecountry and assembled in another), and financial flows. The term increasinglyalso refers to the movement of people and of information (including not onlyfinancial and other raw data but ideas, fashions, and culture as well) acrossinternational borders. Globalization can be understood as a driving forceaffecting many global issues, from migration to fair trade to debt relief.

The concept of global public goods is a more recent one, and indeed itsdimensions and implications are still being worked out by researchers andpolicy analysts. The International Task Force on Global Public Goods hasdefined international public goods (a term that includes both global andregional public goods) as goods and services that “address issues that: (i) aredeemed to be important to the international community, to both developedand developing countries; (ii) typically cannot, or will not, be adequatelyaddressed by individual countries or entities acting alone; and, in such cases(iii) are best addressed collectively on a multilateral basis.”1 By this definition,most but not all of the global issues addressed in this book involve the creationof—or the failure to create—global public goods. We will return to the topicof global public goods later in the chapter.

What Global Issues Do We Face Today?Global issues are present in all areas of our lives as citizens of the world. Theyaffect our economies, our environment, our capabilities as humans, and ourprocesses for making decisions regarding cooperation at the global level(which this book will call global governance). These issues often turn out to beinterconnected, although they may not seem so at first. For example, energyconsumption drives climate change, which in turn threatens (a) marine fish-eries through changes in ocean temperature and chemistry and (b) other foodresources through changes in rainfall patterns. For purposes of this book, wegroup global issues into the five thematic areas shown in table 1.1. Of course,there are also other possible categorizations and other approaches to globalissues.2

Not all of the issues listed in table 1.1 are discussed in this book. Rather,we have tried to cover the most important ones in each of the categories intable 1.1 where the World Bank has expertise. Global issues in the area of

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peace and security are also very important but are beyond the expertise andmandate of the World Bank. The book therefore has four parts, covering theglobal economy, global human development, the global environment andnatural resources, and global governance. Each part has several chapters, eachof which covers one of the global issues listed in table 1.1.

Each chapter begins by defining the issue and identifying what makes itglobal in scope. The chapter then explores the key underlying forces thatshape the issue, the consequences of addressing or not addressing it, and pos-sible solutions, controversies, and international actions already under way orproposed. Each chapter ends with a brief review of the World Bank’s ownperspectives on the issue and its role in seeking solutions. What follows is abrief introduction to the four thematic areas and the global issues discussedwithin each.

The Global EconomyNational and regional economies around the world are becoming increasinglyintegrated with each other through trade in goods and services, transfer oftechnology, and production chains. The interconnectedness of financial mar-kets is also expanding rapidly. Such integration offers greater opportunity for

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T A B L E 1 . 1 A List of Global Issues by Thematic Area

Thematic area Global issues

Global economy International trade,* financial stability,* poverty and inequality,*foreign aid,* debt relief,* international migration,* food security,*intellectual property rights

Global Human Universal education,* communicable diseases,* humanitarian development emergencies, hunger and malnutrition,* refugees

Global environment Climate change,* deforestation,* access to safe water,* and natural loss of biodiversity, land degradation, sustainable energy,* resources depletion of fisheries*

Peace and security Arms proliferation, armed conflict, terrorism, removal of landmines, drug trafficking and other crime, disarmament, genocide

Global governance International law, multilateral treaties, conflict prevention,* reformof the United Nations system,* reform of international financialinstitutions,* transnational corruption,* global compacts,* humanrights

Note: Asterisks indicate that a chapter on this global issue is included in this book.

Bhargava, V. K. (Ed.). (2006). Global issues for global citizens : An introduction to key development challenges. World Bank Publications.Created from ashford-ebooks on 2022-05-07 03:04:30.

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people to tap into more and larger markets around the world, and so increaseboth their incomes and their ability to enjoy all that the world economy hasto offer.

At the same time, however, economic integration poses serious inherentrisks: in a globalized world economy, an adverse event such as a financialcrisis in one part of the world can easily spread to other parts, just as a con-tagious disease spreads from person to person. An example of such conta-gion was the East Asian financial crisis of 1997–98, in which a financial andcurrency crisis in Thailand quickly triggered similar upheavals in the Repub-lic of Korea, Indonesia, and elsewhere, prompting international interventionto avert a global crisis. (See chapter 3 for more about the East Asian and otherfinancial crises.) Another example involves the globalization of trade andlabor markets: concerns about the fairness of recent international tradeagreements and about the effects of freer trade on jobs and working condi-tions led to violent protests at the World Trade Organization meeting in Seat-tle in 1999; these protests helped change the dynamic of the latest round ofinternational trade negotiations. (See chapter 7 for a discussion of theseongoing negotiations.) There are also concerns that the world economy isgrowing in an unbalanced way, with rising inequalities in incomes andopportunities.

Part One of the book is devoted to those global issues that fall under theheading of the global economy. Of the many issues that could be addressed,the book considers the following: poverty and inequality, financial stability,aid, debt, migration, trade, and food security.

Poverty and Inequality

Substantial progress has been made in recent decades in reducing poverty—the proportion of people living in extreme poverty worldwide has halvedsince 1980. Yet poverty remains deep and widespread: more than a billionpeople still subsist on less than one dollar a day, and income per capita inthe world’s high-income countries, on average, is 65 times that in the low-income countries.

Income is not the only measure of poverty, nor is it the only one for whichthe recent numbers are grim. Over three-quarters of a billion of the world’speople, many of them children, are malnourished. Whereas the rich countrieshave an average of 3.7 physicians per 1,000 population, the low-income coun-tries have just 0.4 per 1,000. Maternal mortality in childbirth in many low-income African countries is more than 100 times higher than in the high-income countries of Europe. Vast numbers of people also struggle to survivein squalid, depressing living conditions, where they lack both opportunity to

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better their lives and the social recognition and voice to demand such oppor-tunity. These, too, are real and important aspects of poverty.

Accompanying widespread poverty is widespread inequality, again as mea-sured both by income and by other yardsticks. Measured in absolute terms,the income gap between rich and poor countries has widened over the pastseveral decades. The economic divide within countries is likewise large.

In an increasingly interdependent world, the high prevalence and stubbornpersistence of poverty and inequality in developing countries—the subject ofchapter 2 of this volume—have implications for all countries. Deep depriva-tion weakens the capacity of states to combat terrorism, organized crime,armed conflict, and the spread of disease, and these in turn can have severeeconomic, environmental, and security consequences for neighboring statesand the global community. Poverty and inequality and their associated out-comes can no longer be contained within national boundaries. This makesthem a global problem of huge proportions, and it means that alleviatingpoverty and reducing inequality are critical to maintaining and strengthen-ing regional and global stability. That is why the UN has made reducing worldpoverty a top priority—it is a target under the first of the Millennium Devel-opment Goals (MDGs) adopted at the UN Millennium Summit—and that iswhy the World Bank takes as its fundamental mission to build a world free ofpoverty.3

Financial Stability

The emergence of a global, market-based financial economy has broughtconsiderable benefits to those middle-income countries at the forefront ofeconomic reform and liberalization—the so-called emerging market economies.Thanks largely to the opening of the financial sector in these countries, investorsin other countries can now better diversify their investment choices acrossdomestic and international assets, increasing their expected rate of return. Busi-nesses within these countries, meanwhile, are better able to finance promisingideas and fund their expansion plans. As a result, financial resources worldwideare invested more efficiently, boosting economic growth and living standards onboth sides of these transactions.

But, as chapter 3 argues, the globalization of financial markets has provedto be a double-edged sword. Even in those countries where liberalizationhas been a tonic for economic growth, it has also raised the real risk offinancial crisis. The most controversial aspect of financial liberaliza-tion involves the liberalization of portfolio flows, especially short-term bor-rowing. The dangers were brought into sharp focus during the East Asianfinancial crisis of the late 1990s, mentioned above. The failure of financial

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systems in that episode imposed high economic and social costs, such asrampant unemployment, increased migration, social conflict, and socialinstability—and not only in the countries directly affected. In the wake ofthis and other crises, an urgent debate has been launched over reform of theinternational financial architecture to reduce the chances of further finan-cial instability.

Aid for Development

Foreign aid has been one of the foundations of international cooperation formany decades. A large part of such aid is intended to promote developmentin low- and middle-income countries: almost every country in the world hasbenefited from aid at some time in its development history. Aid comes fromboth government sources (in which case it is called official development assis-tance) and private sources. Among government sources are the bilateral aidprograms of national governments, such as the U.S. Agency for InternationalDevelopment, and international financial institutions, such as the Interna-tional Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Private sources include a grow-ing number of charitable and other nongovernmental organizations, amongothers. Besides directly financing a vast range of development activities, aidalso comes in the form of debt relief for the world’s heavily indebted countries.

Aid for development plays, and is expected to continue to play, a vital rolein addressing many of the global issues discussed in this book. Meanwhile thegrowth of global programs and funds and the emergence of new bilateral andprivate donors are increasing the channels by which aid is delivered. With thisexpansion in the volume and sources of aid, more and better coordinationamong donors will be essential if aid is to be delivered effectively. Chapter 4discusses the basic concepts of international assistance, the forces shaping aidfor development, the various criticisms levied against existing aid programs,international responses to increase the volume and the effectiveness of aidflows, and the prospects for increasing worldwide aid and for better moni-toring of its use and impact.

Debt Relief and Debt Sustainability

For the world’s poorest countries, foreign aid and the ability to take on foreigndebt present a valuable opportunity to invest in their own development. Butforeign borrowing poses great disadvantages as well as great advantages. On theone hand, when the proceeds of public borrowing are invested wisely, directedat the right policies and programs, they can indeed promote more rapid devel-opment. On the other hand, too much borrowing, or any borrowing that is notundertaken prudently, can act as a drag on the economy, as precious funds

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must then be devoted to debt service rather than to serving the country’sdevelopment needs. As chapter 5 explains, debt that is rising rapidly relative toa country’s output or exports can threaten that country’s very future.

This threat became increasingly and painfully evident in the case of a num-ber of low-income countries in the 1980s and 1990s. Their plight sparked aninternational advocacy campaign, popularly know as the Jubilee movement,to forgive the debts of the poorest countries with huge debt burdens. Thiscampaign led in turn to the launch of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries(HIPC) Initiative in 1996, to address the excessive debt burdens of the world’spoorest nations. Since then, 38 of these countries—32 of them in Sub-Saharan Africa—have qualified or potentially qualify for HIPC assistance, andof these, 18 are now receiving irrevocable debt relief and 10 are receivinginterim relief. The rest have been beset by persistent social difficulties thatmake debt relief infeasible for now. However, at their summit in Gleneagles,Scotland, in 2005, the leaders of the Group of Eight major industrial nationspledged to eventually write off 100 percent of the debt of the poorest Africancountries. In line with this proposal, officially known as the Multilateral DebtRelief Initiative, efforts are under way to provide $37 billion in debt relief tocountries that are at the HIPC completion stage.

International Migration

Increasing flows of people across national borders are both a contributor to anda consequence of a more interconnected world. About 180 million peopleworldwide already live outside their country of birth, and pressure for interna-tional migration will continue, driven by differences in demographics and realincomes between countries. Research shows that although the largest economicgains from immigration accrue to the immigrants themselves, the internationalmigration of labor can also benefit both the countries receiving immigrants andthe countries sending them, and that on balance it boosts world income andreduces poverty. In the receiving countries, migrants can fill labor shortages incertain industries. In the sending countries, they can help ease unemploymentand other social pressures while increasing financial inflows, in the form ofremittances from the migrants to their families back home. Remittances alsohelp level out the distribution of income both within and across countries.Worldwide remittances have doubled in the past decade, reaching $216 billionin 2004, according to official statistics, of which $151 billion is estimated to havegone to developing countries. Actual remittances are most likely higher,because remittances through informal channels fail to be counted.

Migration is not without its costs, however. For the migrants themselves,the journey itself and the search for fair employment and humane treatment

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in the host country can be arduous and risky. The host country governmentmay bear added costs to assimilate the migrants, and wages for some nativeworkers may fall. The home country may suffer a loss of valuable skilledworkers. The sum of these and other costs depends, of course, on the num-ber of migrants, and so the major issues surrounding international migrationtoday, which chapter 6 examines, are how to help countries adapt to large-scale migration and how to improve its global development impact. Equitablemigration is also ultimately linked to other broader issues such as povertyreduction and human rights, making it a global concern.

International Trade

In an ever more integrated world economy, international trade matters morethan ever before. As chapter 7 argues, a robust and equitable trading systemis central to the fight against global poverty, because it drives economicgrowth and provides jobs in developing countries where they are sorelyneeded. Measured by the volume of goods and services traded, world tradecontinues to grow, and just since 2000, the exports of developing countries asa group have increased their share of world markets by more than a fifth, from19 percent to 23 percent. Yet growth in trade in many low-income countrieshas long been held back by protectionist policies in the more developedcountries. Many rich countries offer subsidies to politically favored domesticindustries such as sugar, textiles, apparel, and steel. These subsidies are aserious barrier to low-income countries’ exports.

The Doha Development Round of multilateral trade talks, now under wayunder the auspices of the World Trade Organization (WTO), is the first suchround to place developing country interests at the center of the negotiations.Although progress on the Doha round stalled following the collapse of theSeptember 2003 WTO Ministerial Conference in Cancún, Mexico, WTOmembers have committed themselves to make progress as the talks proceed.Delivering on the promise of lowering tariffs as well as nontariff barriers inboth developed and developing countries could stimulate worldwide increasesin income that would lift an estimated 144 million people out of poverty.

Food Security

In a world of growing prosperity and agricultural abundance, about 800 mil-lion people still do not get enough to eat. Eliminating hunger is thus one ofthe most fundamental challenges facing humanity. The challenge is a complexone—so much so that this book devotes two chapters to unraveling itsmultiple dimensions. As chapter 8 explains, the task of reducing hunger—another one of the targets under the first of the MDGs—is shaped by

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interlinked issues of food availability, access to food, food security, and fooddistribution. Food availability refers to the supply of food, whether at theglobal, regional, national, or local level, without regard to the ability ofindividuals to acquire it. Sources of supply may include production within thehousehold, domestic commercial food production, food stocks accumulatedin earlier periods, commercially purchased imports, and food aid. There arepresently no signs of a food availability problem at the global level. In fact,global food production has more than kept pace with growing world popula-tion in recent decades, increasing in per capita terms by 0.9 percent annuallyand even faster in such populous developing countries as China and India.

In most circumstances, the main cause of food insecurity is not lack ofavailability but lack of access at the household level: because of weakpurchasing power and insufficient household agricultural production—bothcharacteristics associated with poverty—millions of people cannot obtainenough of the food that is available locally to meet their dietary needs. Andeven access to sufficient food at the household level does not guarantee thatall individuals will have an adequate food intake. That depends upon thedistribution of food among household members, methods of food prepara-tion, dietary preferences, and mother-child feeding habits—issues taken upfurther in chapter 11.

Global Human DevelopmentPart Two of the book covers three global issues related to the developmentand preservation of human capability: communicable diseases, education, andmalnutrition. The Human Development Reports team of the UN Develop-ment Programme has defined the task of human development as “creating anenvironment in which people can develop their full potential and leadproductive, creative lives in accord with their needs and interests.”4 Build-ing human capabilities through education, health services, and access toresources and knowledge is fundamental to human development. Most of theactions needed lie within the domain of national governments, but broad-based human development also has significant externalities, or spillovereffects, that make it a global issue. Education, good health, and good nutritionare all vital not only for the earning capacity and general well-being ofindividuals but also for the prosperity of national economies and, in aglobalizing world, for the global economy. Controlling the global spread ofdiseases is determined in part by the effectiveness of national public healthprograms, but also by the degree of international cooperation in containingoutbreaks, and the weakest link in the chain determines the risk for all. Theimportance of education, health, and nutrition both for individuals and for

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human society at all levels explains why several of the MDGs focus on thesehuman development issues.

Communicable Diseases

HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria are just a few of the infectious diseasesthat continue to plague humankind, especially in the developing world.Meanwhile new threats such as avian flu and severe acute respiratorysyndrome (SARS) continue to emerge. With essential vaccines and immu-nizations still underprovided in many developing countries, communicablediseases are an international public health issue that has caught the attentionof the global public and its leaders. There is increasing global awareness thatcommunicable diseases do not respect national borders and that how thesediseases are dealt with in developing countries has consequences both forglobal public health and for the global economy.

As chapter 9 reports, this view is well grounded in years of research, whichhas produced some important breakthroughs but also reported somedismaying findings: 40 million people worldwide are now infected with HIV,and those infected experience a decline in life expectancy of 6 to 7 years onaverage; communicable diseases represent 7 of the top 10 causes of childmortality in developing countries, even though 90 percent of these deaths areavoidable. Improvements in global public health not only promise relief fromhuman suffering on a vast scale but also have important economic benefits,as reductions in mortality, reduced incidence of disease, improved nutritionleading to improved intellectual capacity, and other gains feed through to alarger, more productive, and more capable world labor force.

Education

In today’s global economy, education has become more vital than ever beforein determining whether people, their local communities, and their countriesachieve their potential and prosper. The world economy is undergoingchanges that make it much more difficult for individuals in any country tothrive without the skills and tools that a quality education provides. This isparticularly important for the poor, who rely on their skills and labor as theirway out of poverty.

As chapter 10 explains, these changes present new challenges and oppor-tunities for educators and educational systems, and the stakes are tremen-dously high. The choices that countries make today about education couldlead to sharply divergent outcomes in the decades ahead. Countries thatrespond astutely should experience extraordinary educational progress, with

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major social and economic benefits, including catch-up gains for the poorand marginalized. Countries that fail to recognize the challenge and respondto it risk stagnating or even slipping backward, widening social and economicgaps and sowing the seeds of unrest.

Malnutrition

As chapter 11 reminds us, malnutrition remains the world’s most serioushealth problem and the single biggest contributor to child mortality. Nearlyone-third of all children in the developing world are either underweight orstunted, and more than 30 percent of the developing world’s population sufferfrom micronutrient deficiencies. Without investments to reduce malnutrition,many countries will fail to achieve the MDGs, and other major internationalefforts in health may be derailed. In Sub-Saharan Africa, malnutrition rates areincreasing, and in South Asia, which has the highest prevalence of undernu-trition of any region, the situation is improving only slowly.

There is now unequivocal evidence that workable solutions to the malnu-trition problem are available. An example is the strikingly low cost at whichmicronutrients could be provided to those in need of them: one estimate is thatall of Africa’s micronutrient needs could be met for a mere $235 million a year.Indeed, interventions such as these have been shown to be excellent economicinvestments. The May 2004 Copenhagen Consensus of eminent economists,which included a number of Nobel laureates, concluded that, among a lengthylist of interventions proposed to meet the world’s myriad development chal-lenges, nutrition interventions pay some of the highest returns.

Global Environment and Natural ResourcesPart Three of the book focuses on issues related to conserving and more equi-tably sharing the planet’s environmental and natural resources in ways thatmeet present needs without undermining future uses. This is the essence ofenvironmental sustainability—a concept reflected in yet another of theMDGs. Resources such as a stable world climate, energy, clean and freshwater, fisheries, and forests are all part of the global commons, and all arealready under stress. Those stresses will only become more intense as worldpopulation and incomes increase, and as today’s developing countries followconsumption paths taken decades earlier by the developed countries. Yetaddressing the challenges of sustainable resource use is hampered by a sober-ing reality: many of the world’s resources are global public goods, whichmeans (as discussed below) that individuals and individual nations actingonly in their self-interest will fail to take fully into account the implications oftheir consumption for the well-being of other people and other countries. In

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the absence of foresightful and globally coordinated policies, exploitation ofthese resources can easily become a race to grab whatever one can grab beforenothing is left. The chapters in this part of the book discuss these issues of howto manage shared global resources and use them in a sustainable fashion.

Climate Change

Virtually all climate scientists now agree that climate change is occurring andis due largely to human activity, and that further change is inevitable. Recentstudies indicate that human activity over the past 100 years has triggered ahistorically unprecedented rise in global surface temperatures and ocean levels,with a worrisome acceleration particularly over the past two decades. The con-sequences will affect billions of people, particularly in poor countries and insubtropical regions, through decreases in agricultural productivity, increasedincidence of flooding and of severe weather events, an expanded range ofwaterborne diseases, loss of biodiversity, and a number of other effects. Beyondthis, if the global climate is pushed far out of balance, it may become launchedon an irreversible course toward catastrophe, with worldwide repercussions.

Thus, as chapter 12 argues, there is an urgent need to develop an effectiveresponse to climate change. That response will necessarily be twofold,requiring, on the one hand, internationally coordinated efforts to prevent stillfurther climate change, and on the other, cost-effective adaptations to a worldin which a changing climate is certain to affect the livelihoods of all, andespecially the poor.

Energy

The world economy of 2035 will be three to four times its present size, thankslargely to rising incomes in developing countries. Even if dramatic improve-ments in energy efficiency are achieved, this vastly expanded activity willconsume much more energy than the world uses today. Pressures to supplyenough fossil fuel, biomass, and electricity to meet world demand will there-fore only get worse. As chapter 13 explains, world economic activity mustbecome radically less carbon intensive, to avoid not only environmental dis-aster through climate change but also health disasters on an epic scale, as citiesin the developing world choke under a fog of pollution. A shift to renewableenergy and low- or no-carbon fuels is essential, as are the development andadoption of energy-efficient technologies.

Water

During the past century, while world population has tripled, the use of freshwater for human consumption, agriculture, and other activities has increased

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sixfold. Some rivers that formerly reached the sea no longer do so—all of thewater is diverted to human use before it reaches the river’s mouth. Half theworld’s wetlands have disappeared in the same period, and today 20 percentof freshwater species are endangered or extinct. Many important aquifers arebeing depleted, and water tables in many parts of the world are dropping atan alarming rate. Worse still, world water use is projected to increase by about50 percent in the next 30 years. It is estimated that, by 2025, 4 billion people—half the world’s population at that time—will live under conditions of severewater stress, with conditions particularly severe in Africa, the Middle East,and South Asia. Currently, an estimated 1.1 billion people lack access to safewater, 2.6 billion are without adequate sanitation, and more than 4 billion donot have their wastewater treated to any degree. These numbers are likely toonly grow worse in the coming decades.

This potentially bleak outlook makes water supply a critical issue and onethat cuts across national and regional economies and many productivesectors. Many observers predict that disputes over scarce water resources willfuel an increase in armed conflicts. The issue has fortunately caught the atten-tion of policy makers and, as discussed in chapter 14, efforts are under way atboth the national and the international level to address water scarcity issues.

Fisheries

The continuing depletion of the world’s marine fisheries is a global issue ofincreasing concern. Fish is an important food for billions of people and pro-vides a livelihood for an estimated 200 million worldwide. Fishers followmigrating schools of fish from sheltered bays and estuaries to the open oceanand from one sea to another, harvesting a global resource that benefits all butis managed by none. Small-scale fishers from Senegal and Ghana fish in thewaters of many other countries in West Africa and in the Gulf of Guinea;European and Asian industrial tuna fleets operate throughout the Atlantic,Indian, and Pacific Oceans. Nations, too, act much like individual fishers,each seeking its own individual benefit from the common resource. In thepast half century, the growth of human populations and economies, thespread of new technologies such as fishing nets made from synthetic materi-als, and the motorization of fishing fleets has contributed to the decline ofmany fisheries, jeopardizing ecological and economic sustainability forcoastal communities around the world.

Chapter 15 depicts the situation of the world’s fisheries today as a classic“tragedy of the commons.” Without effective international regulation, fisheriesaccessible to more than one country, including those on the high seas,are declining as each vessel tries to take as much as it can of what remains. Yet

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efforts to provide such regulation have been beset with problems. Many existinginternational instruments designed to regulate high-seas and transboundaryfishing are weak. The existing Law of the Sea Convention and its subsidiaryinstruments have important gaps, and effective enforcement of measures forresponsible high-seas fishing has proved elusive. The World Bank and otherorganizations have started a major global initiative under a global partnershipprogram called PROFISH to focus attention on the actions needed.

Forests

The world’s forests cover about 25 to 30 percent of its land surface, or between3.3 billion and 3.9 billion hectares, depending on the definitions used. It is esti-mated that during the 1990s the world suffered a net loss of 95 million hectaresof forests—an area larger than República Bolivariana de Venezuela—with mostof the losses occurring in the tropics. These losses matter because forests pro-vide a complex array of vital ecological, social, and economic goods and services.

From an ecological point of view, forests are the repository of the greatbulk of terrestrial biodiversity. In some countries in the Asia-Pacific region,forest destruction is responsible for global biodiversity losses on the order of2 to 5 percent per decade, resulting in inestimable harm to ecosystem stabil-ity and human well-being. Forests also contain large amounts of sequesteredcarbon, and their destruction or degradation (especially by burning) isthought to contribute between 10 and 30 percent of all carbon dioxide gasemissions into the atmosphere. Deforestation is thus a major factor in globalwarming. In addition, mismanagement of woodlands in humid tropical andsubtropical countries contributes significantly to soil losses equivalent to10 percent of agricultural output in those countries each year. From an eco-nomic and social point of view, about 60 million people (mainly indigenousand tribal groups) are almost wholly dependent on forests, and another350 million people who live within or adjacent to dense forests depend onthem heavily for subsistence and income. In developing countries, about1.2 billion people (including more than 400 million in Africa) rely on openwoodlands or agroforestry systems that help to sustain agricultural pro-ductivity and generate income. Some 1 billion people worldwide depend onmedicines derived from forest plants or rely on common-property forestresources for meeting essential fuel wood, grazing, and other needs.

As chapter 16 argues, conservation and production must coexist if the fullpotential of forests for poverty reduction and protection of the global envi-ronment is to be realized. Much of the world’s forest area will inevitably beused for productive purposes. But large areas must be preserved intact fortheir ecological and cultural value.

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Global GovernanceThe need for a global governance system comprising international institutions,agreements, and regulations has long been recognized. After World War I, theLeague of Nations was created as the first attempt at such a global system.However, the League proved ineffective, and after World War II a new inter-national system was designed,5 with the UN, the World Bank, the InternationalMonetary Fund (IMF), and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade(succeeded in the 1990s by the WTO) as its cornerstones. This system remainsin place today as the primary means for addressing the global issues agenda.

However, the inherited system suffers from many problems such as lack ofperceived legitimacy, lack of resources, lack of effective enforcement mecha-nisms, and lack of representativeness. As global issues and challenges haveintensified, demands for reform to make these global governance mecha-nisms more effective have grown ever more urgent, and many proposals havebeen offered in response. Some progress has also been made in the adoptionof global compacts, in which countries agree to work together toward globaldevelopment goals and to prevent and resolve violent conflicts. Part Four ofthe book discusses two key issues in global governance (conflict preventionand international actions to curb corruption), the two principal groups ofglobal governance institutions (the UN system and the international finan-cial institutions), and the main global compacts and the processes that led tothem.

Conflict and Development

Some 1.1 billion people are either affected currently by violent conflict or atextremely high risk of being affected in the foreseeable future. The majorityof violent conflicts today are intrastate, or civil, rather than interstate, orbetween nations, and the prevalence of both kinds of conflict is declining.Most of the world’s conflicts now occur in low-income countries, particularlyin Africa.

With globalization, however, the persistence of conflict anywhere hasripple effects that range far and wide. Neighboring countries, in particular,suffer reduced income and increased incidence of disease, and often they mustabsorb large numbers of refugees fleeing the conflict. Civil conflicts frequentlyresult in large territories lying outside the control of any recognized govern-ment, which may then become epicenters of crime and disease. In the post-September 11 world, these areas are also often linked to terrorism, makingthem a truly global concern. These concerns have prompted world leaders toinitiate new measures under the auspices of the UN, including a new Peace-building Commission. This and other measures are discussed in chapter 17.

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Corruption

Chapter 18 addresses what former World Bank President James Wolfensohncalled the “cancer of corruption”—the abuse of public institutions for privategain. Recent studies have shown conclusively what has long been widelyassumed, namely, that corruption is detrimental to both the economic andthe political well-being of countries. Corruption creates distortions and inef-ficiencies in public administration and in private economic activity, and itincreases inequality: it unfairly benefits the few with access to the powerful,while especially harming the poorest. In 2004 the World Bank estimated that,worldwide, more than $1 trillion, or the equivalent of 3 percent of gross worldproduct, is paid in bribes each year. This form of corruption takes place atboth the national and the international level. The victims are usually peoplein developing countries, whose precious foreign aid and investment aresiphoned off from badly needed development projects and into the pocketsof corrupt government officials, their family members or cronies, or corruptbrokers or middlemen. Recent years have seen a major step forward toaddress transnational corruption and its effects, with the launch of the UNConvention Against Corruption.

The United Nations System

Effective management of global issues requires effective international cooper-ation, and the UN is the principal body within which such cooperation takesplace. The Charter of the UN sets out the basic principles of international rela-tions and entails obligations on all its member states. According to the Char-ter, the UN has four purposes: to maintain international peace and security, todevelop friendly relations among nations, to cooperate in solving internationalproblems and in promoting respect for human rights, and to serve as a centerfor harmonizing the actions of sovereign nations. The UN itself consists of sixprincipal organs: the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economicand Social Council, the Trusteeship Council, the International Court ofJustice, and the Secretariat. The extended UN family, however, is much larger,encompassing various agencies, funds, programs, and other bodies, such as theUN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the UN Development Programme. Inaddition to these are the specialized agencies, such as the World Health Orga-nization, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund, which areadministered autonomously but are considered part of the UN system.

The UN today faces many challenges to its effectiveness and is undertak-ing a variety of reforms in response. The success or failure of these reformswill have significant implications for the global issues discussed in this book.The organization also suffers from an unfortunate rift between developed and

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developing countries, which will make movement on reform extremely diffi-cult going forward. Chapter 19 reviews the numerous efforts over the years ofthe UN Secretariat, the other UN bodies, the member states, and their advis-ers to reform the system so as to improve coordination among the variousbodies and so better serve the UN mission.

International Financial Institutions

Addressing global issues requires international cooperation in the economicas well as the political sphere. Whereas the latter is primarily the domain ofthe UN system, as described just above, the mobilization of economic andfinancial cooperation, including transfers of resources, to address globalissues falls mainly within the purview of the international financial institu-tions (IFIs). IFIs are institutions that provide financial support and profes-sional advice for economic and social development activities in developingcountries, or that promote international economic cooperation andstability—or both. They include the IMF, the World Bank, and the fourregional development banks: the African Development Bank, the AsianDevelopment Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the Euro-pean Bank for Reconstruction and Development. (The World Bank and theregional development banks are also called multilateral development banks.)As with the UN, there are many proposals on the table for reform of the IFIs,to enable them to play a more effective role in the global issues agenda.Chapter 20 provides an overview of the IFIs, the role they play in addressingglobal issues, and the main proposals to improve their effectiveness.

Global Compacts

At the start of the 21st century, world leaders laid out, in remarkable unison,a series of global compacts for a sustainable world, including most promi-nently the Millennium Development Goals. The most recent global summitshave sought to evaluate progress toward the MDGs and to advocate thecreation of institutional mechanisms to deal with the global developmentchallenges ahead. Global compacts have great potential to prevent theworld from growing further out of balance. However, progress so far has beenslow, and there are real concerns that the targets will not be achieved by theestablished deadlines.

Chapter 21 discusses the global initiatives of recent decades that triggeredthe consolidation of a global development agenda through global compacts.It highlights the issues and controversies that have influenced these efforts tomake a better world for all. Besides the MDGs, the key meetings and compactscovered include

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■ The WTO ministerial conference in Doha, Qatar, in 2001■ The International Conference on Financing and Development in

Monterey, Mexico, in 2002■ The World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg,

South Africa, also in 2002 ■ The UN World Summit of 2005.

What Are the Forces Shaping Today’s Global Issues?The global issues identified in the previous section are not static but ratherdynamic, and their evolution in the coming years will be shaped by manyfactors. The forces driving these issues, the consequences thereof, and theappropriate solutions vary from issue to issue, but certain broad forces arecommon to many of them. These include demographics, growth of the globaleconomy, technology and innovation, global interdependencies, and globaladvocacy.

DemographicsAfter doubling from 3 billion in 1960 to 6 billion in 2000, the world’s popu-lation is expected to increase to 8 billion by 2030. It should then stabilize inthe 21st century at 9 billion to 10 billion, which would be 20 to 30 percentfewer than forecast in the 1960s and 1970s. Most of this growth will occur indeveloping countries; population in the developed countries as a group willactually decline. Meanwhile the dependency ratio—the number of nonwork-ing people supported by the average worker—will decline in the developingcountries, boosting their ability to save and so to raise productivity. This inturn will increase their capacity to finance on their own the investmentsneeded to meet basic human needs, maintain and improve public health,educate the next generation, and create job opportunities.

However, given that some 2.5 billion to 3 billion people in developing coun-tries (about half the current world population) now live on less than two dol-lars a day, the ability of these countries to take care of all their people is atpresent extremely limited and will remain so for some time to come. Unlessthe richer nations help them through increased aid and trade, growing socialdiscontent and outright conflict in developing countries will fester and even-tually spill across their boundaries. The developed world cannot simply builda wall and turn its back on what is happening in the developing countries.Demographics will combine with the other forces to find their way throughsuch barriers, whether made of bricks and mortar or of institutionalized indif-ference.

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Economic GrowthEven if we assume, conservatively, real global economic growth of 3 percenta year, the global economy will grow from $35 trillion in 2005 to $75 trillionin 2030 (both figures are at 2001 market exchange rates and prices).6 This vastexpansion of output will have major consequences for both production andconsumption, particularly of food, water, and energy, and will make today’senvironmental stresses still more acute. Within this expanding global econ-omy, the developing countries as a group are projected to grow at 5 percent ayear in real terms, while industrial country growth is projected to be just2.5 percent a year. In this scenario, the share of the developing world in grossworld product climbs substantially from just over a fifth to a third, with amajor share going to China.

Although the share of the developing countries in world income rises sig-nificantly in this scenario, and absolute poverty in the world declines, the gapin income per capita between the rich and the poor countries nonethelesswidens. Without deliberate intervention, persisting inequality both withinand across countries will retard global development.7

Scientific and Technological InnovationFuture breakthroughs in science and technology have the potential to dramat-ically improve the health and productivity of the world’s poor, mitigate climatechange and environmental degradation, and feed a larger world population ina sustainable manner. Whether they actually will do so depends in large mea-sure on collective decisions about the funding, implementation, and dissemi-nation of technological innovation. Some technologies may also make globalissues harder to grapple with. For example, the safe long-term disposal ofnuclear waste is becoming a global issue, and some emerging technologies(such as genetic engineering) are beginning to pose legal and ethical dilemmas.

Increasing Interconnectedness and InterdependenceThe ever-greater interconnectedness of people around the world—the veryspirit of globalization—can be seen in the growth of international migra-tion, tourism, and education, and in increased traffic on telephoneexchanges, satellite television and radio, and of course the Internet. Unfor-tunately, that same interconnectedness also manifests itself in an increasein diseases that spread across borders, in international terrorism, in threatsto the global environment, and in myriad other ways. The growing interde-pendence of people and communities worldwide can be seen in terms ofexpanded economic integration through trade and capital flows; in growing

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public security concerns related to drug trafficking, transnational crime,terrorism, and human rights; and in concerns about the overuse of worldresources and the preservation of the environment. These two forces—interconnectedness and interdependence—are themselves interrelated andmutually reinforcing: growing interconnectedness increases awareness ofour interdependence, and vice versa. Both are powerful drivers of increasedconcern about global issues and demand for effective action. The fact thatdifferent nations, communities, and individuals experience the benefits andcosts of this increasing globalization differently generates controversies; italso complicates, and sometimes undermines, the effective and timely res-olution of global issues.

Global AdvocacyThe continuing revolution in communications technologies and networks,cited just above, is enabling the global flow of information to all corners ofthe world instantaneously. People in today’s world know much more, and inreal time, about what is going on elsewhere in the world than their grandpar-ents or even their parents could have imagined. We are all becoming moreand more aware of the differences between the world’s haves and its have-nots, the interconnections between local human activity and global ecology,and the increased vulnerability of all of us everywhere to diseases, crises, andconflicts arising anywhere. Some nations are throwing the doors open to thesenew communications technologies, while others are trying, usually in vain, tocontrol their spread.

The flow of information through these new communications technologiesis neither one-way nor top-down. Rather, the new technologies are empow-ering people everywhere to express their views to a global audience (for exam-ple, through blogs) and enabling them to connect with like-minded personsto promote social (or in some cases antisocial) activities and advocate for theircauses. This phenomenon has serious implications for the manner in whichglobal issues are addressed and for the maintenance of peace and securityacross borders. Growth in instant worldwide communications is generatinga parallel growth in public advocacy and activism, elevating formerly local orregional issues to global status, while mobilizing public opinion and demandfor action on a global scale. For many of the global issues discussed in thisbook, instant communications and advocacy are already playing a crucial rolein global policy making; examples include the debt relief movement, theclimate change movement, the campaign to make poverty history, and theinternational drive for new vaccines.

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Why Care About Global Issues?It may be only a fortunate coincidence that the new communications tech-nologies that have made such global grassroots interaction possible are thesame technologies that have shown us the uses to which such interaction canand should be put—and that it is urgent to do so. Thanks in part to thesetechnologies and the information they impart, we know not only that migra-tion is an issue in Guatemala, and sea-level rise an issue in Maldives, and debtrelief an issue in Uganda. Rather, our instantaneous technology allows us toconsider these disparate issues simultaneously, side by side, and to under-stand that they are all issues of great importance whose impact is felteverywhere—that they are indeed global issues.

And that means they are our issues. Because these issues are global, the con-sequences of action, inaction, or inadequate action on these issues will, by def-inition, be felt globally—not just somewhere on the other side of the world,but here, where we live. If that is not sufficient reason to care about theseissues, and to use our newfound interconnectedness to join with others anddo something about them, then what in the world is?

But what do we really know about those consequences just alluded to? Onething we can say is that although they will vary from global issue to globalissue, there is also significant interaction between issues and consequences.The consequences of inaction can be grouped into economic, social, security,health, and environmental effects:

■ Economic consequences. If the world and its leaders fail to address suchglobal economic issues as fairness in international trade, greater equal-ity of income and opportunity, financial stability, sustainable debt, andcorruption, the growth and stability of the global economy could beundermined and overall prosperity reduced. These consequences—weaker growth and greater inequality—would grow, feeding frustra-tion and social stress. The insistence of the antiglobalization movementon turning back the clock would grow stronger, for example, and itsprotests more disruptive.

■ Social consequences. As populations grow, as communities around theworld become more and more interconnected, and as global flows ofinformation accelerate and expand their bandwidth, more and more ofthe world’s people will know more and more about what is going onoutside their local communities and national borders. Those sufferingfrom inequality and deprivation will become increasingly aware of the

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better lives that others elsewhere lead. The slowing growth of worldpopulation and the rise in developing countries’ share of world incomeprovide a great opportunity to address crucial human developmentissues such as health and education, social issues such as inclusivenessand social cohesiveness, and governance issues such as institutionalaccountability. Failure to address these issues adequately could haveserious implications for civil peace and harmony in societies all aroundthe world.

■ Security consequences. The widening gap between rich and poor,together with intensifying competition for increasingly scarce naturalresources, both nationally and internationally, will fuel conflict andextremism, which will inevitably spill across national borders. Laggingdevelopment could also lead to the failure of states, some of whichwould likely become havens for terrorists or drug cartels. The damagewould soon spread to other states, developing and developed, thatremain otherwise intact.

■ Health consequences. Failure to address malnutrition and the spreadof preventable and communicable diseases would perpetuate andindeed increase human suffering and mortality wherever thesescourges strike. The unchecked spread of disease would also haveeconomic consequences, through reduced productivity and anincreased disease burden, and these, too, would spread beyondnational borders.

■ Environmental consequences. Today’s patterns of production and con-sumption cannot simply be scaled up to a world with $75 trillion or$100 trillion in annual gross product. Something will have to give, andthat something is likely to be our shared environment. If today’s devel-oping countries replicate the consumption patterns of today’s richcountries, great damage to the global environment, and to the planet’sability to sustain life and growth, is in store. The technologies neededto change these consumption patterns and develop alternatives areamong the most valuable of global public goods, yet their developmentis now largely neglected. If present trends in the deterioration of biodi-versity continue, the world of tomorrow will be biologically muchpoorer than that of today, even if the many poor communities depen-dent on fragile ecosystems can be moved to alternative locations andlivelihoods. The financing needed to compensate these communities,so as to preserve biodiversity for the benefit not only of the countriesinvolved but of the world, is huge—well beyond the means of thosecountries alone.

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How Are Today’s Global Issues Being Addressed?It is clear that how today’s global issues are addressed, or not addressed, willhave a profound impact on the shape of the future world in which we allwill live. Yet, as noted above, there is no global government to address theseglobal issues, set global public policies and priorities, collect taxes on a world-wide basis, and allocate resources accordingly. Thus progress on most of theseissues depends on a deliberate—and deliberative—process of buildinginternational consensus for collective action. This consensus can be expressedin many forms, for example:

■ International agreements signed by both industrial and developingcountries. Programs based on international agreements enjoy stronglegitimacy, thanks to their formal authorization, especially when thereis strong participation of developing countries in their design andimplementation, and when there are equitable governance agreements.Examples include the MDGs and the 1987 Montreal Protocol on thecontrol of ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons.

■ International law. The International Law Commission of the UnitedNations prepares drafts on various aspects of international law, whichcan then be incorporated into conventions and submitted for ratifica-tion by the member states. Once a nation has ratified a convention, it islegally bound thereto. Thus the ratification constitutes consensus.Some of these conventions form the basis of law governing relationsamong states, such as conventions on diplomatic relations and theGeneva Conventions.

■ Declarations signed by participants at international conferences. Thesedeclarations represent a less explicit and less binding form of interna-tional consensus than formal conventions or treaties and are largelyoriented toward advocacy.

■ Actions of the G-8, G-20, G-77, and other such groupings. The declarationsof these intergovernmental groups are similar to international confer-ences in that they advocate and mobilize their members to take action,whether it is on doubling aid for Africa, debt relief, or any of a numberof other issues. Of course, these statements signify consensus onlyamong their members, not a global consensus. The economic and politi-cal power of the group (greatest for the G-8, less for the others) largelydetermines its potential to engage in effective problem solving on globalissues. Their choice of issues on which to focus may in turn be driven bythe advocacy efforts of civil society and other organizations.

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■ Civil society campaigns and associations. In some instances, globalaction is driven by civil society campaigns such as the Jubilee move-ment, the Live Aid concerts, the Global Call to Action AgainstPoverty, and the Make Poverty History campaign. Some well-knownannual global forums such as the World Economic Forum and theWorld Social Forum also frequently focus on global issues and canprofoundly influence the debate.

■ Global partnerships. Often partnerships to address global issues areestablished by groups of donors, including governments, private sectorand civil society organizations, and international organizations. Somerecent examples in the health field are the Global Alliance for Vaccina-tion and Immunization; Roll Back Malaria; the Global Fund to FightAIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria; and the Partnership for Maternal,Newborn, and Child Health. Many of these partnerships promoteownership among developing countries by focusing on issues of rele-vance to them and by demonstrating that they can have an impact.

■ Global governance institutions. Nations of the world have set up manyinternational organizations with mandates to work on a wide arrayof global issues in the economic, social, cultural, education, health,and other fields. Among these multilateral organizations are the UNand its agencies, the IMF, the WTO, the World Bank and the regionaldevelopment banks, and the International Labour Organization. Allof these are involved in managing global issues as mandated by theirgovernance bodies, which consist of representatives of the membernations.

What Makes Global Issues So Difficult to Address?Dissatisfaction with the current structures for addressing global issues is wide-spread. Many people feel that some of the most important global issues arenot being addressed adequately, and they worry that the current generationmay leave the planet in worse shape than when it was inherited. The publicgoods nature of many global issues, which was touched upon earlier in thisintroduction, is a key reason why action commensurate with the challengecan be slow to emerge.

Public goods are defined by two characteristics: the benefits they producecan be enjoyed without paying for them (nonexcludability), and consumptionof the good by one person does not detract from its consumption by another(nonrivalrousness). An often-cited example of a public good is a lighthouse—but perhaps a more timely example would be a global positioning satellite

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(GPS). The signal from such a satellite can be captured by anyone with a GPSreceiver (which must normally be paid for, but the signal itself need not), andso it is nonexcludable; the number of people who can access the signal simul-taneously is effectively limitless, and so it is nonrivalrous as well. Most typesof knowledge and know-how are also public goods, after any patent or copy-right restrictions on their use have expired. Global commons are goods orresources that are usually of natural origin, such as wilderness forests or oceanfisheries. They share the characteristics of public goods to a certain extent: theyare largely nonexcludable, and they are nonrivalrous to the extent that theiruse does not exceed their capacity to regenerate themselves. When usagepasses a certain point, the resource will be degraded or even destroyed.

Markets, whether national or international, typically fail to provide publicgoods: since it is impossible to make the user pay for them, there is no incen-tive for businesses to produce them. Nor are markets by themselves able toaddress the problem of managing global commons. At the national level, gov-ernments step in to provide many public goods, paying for them throughtaxes and other revenues. However, in the case of global public goods, noglobal tax or other mechanism exists to finance their production and supply.Countries looking only to their own narrow self-interest will be unlikely toagree on which global public goods should be provided, or on how to sharethe burden of financing them. At the same time, there is overproduction ofglobal public “bads,” such as communicable diseases, drug smuggling, cli-mate change, and human rights abuses.

Global public goods have nonetheless been provided, some more successfullythan others. Global Monitoring Report 2003 (World Bank and IMF 2003) citesthe following examples, starting with the most successful: aviation safety, postalsystems, the Internet, the eradication of smallpox, advances in agriculturalresearch, and protection of the ozone layer.8 Examples where success has so farproved elusive include the prevention of climate change and the sustainable useof fisheries. Institutional arrangements such as UN peacekeeping programs,global funds such as the Global Environment Facility, and research groups suchas the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research have emergedand are very active in addressing global issues. These, too, are public goods, andtheir modest successes thus far are welcome and need to be expanded.

What the World Bank Is Doing About Global IssuesOver the past few years the World Bank has put significant resources into activ-ities related to global issues, including the creation of global public goods. Oneimportant vehicle for such activities is the MDGs, which the Bank vigorously

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supports along with its country members, the UN system, and numerous otherorganizations. The Bank is increasingly being called upon to take a lead role inaddressing global issues because of its global membership and reach, its powerto convene technical and financial expertise, its ability to mobilize resources,and its multisectoral experience and institutional knowledge. As the onlyglobal institution among the multilateral development banks, the World Bankhas increased its support for global programs rapidly in recent years. The Bankis now participating in some 70 different programs involving the followingglobal issues (some of which are covered in this book), among others:

■ Biodiversity■ Climate change■ Coastal and marine management■ Conflict prevention and postconflict reconstruction■ Corruption■ Debt relief■ Disaster management ■ Energy■ Environment■ Financial sector■ Fisheries and aquaculture■ Forests and forestry■ Health, nutrition, and population■ HIV/AIDS■ Hunger■ Land resources management■ Malaria■ Natural resources management■ Poverty reduction■ Protection of the ozone layer (the Montreal Protocol)■ Renewable and rural energy■ Safe motherhood■ Sustainable development■ Tuberculosis■ Water resources management■ Water supply and sanitation.

The Bank’s support for global programs—as distinct from the single-country projects and programs that make up the bulk of its work—beganthree decades ago, with the establishment of the Consultative Group on

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International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). The Bank serves as both con-vener and donor to CGIAR, as well as a lender to developing countries forcomplementary activities. CGIAR, which brings together leading agriculturalresearch institutes from around the world, has had some notable successes increating global public goods such as the high-yielding varieties of crops thatwere the backbone of the Green Revolution. A major expansion of the Bank’swork on global issues began in the late 1990s, when the Bank increased its ori-entation toward global partnerships and associated program support activi-ties. This change in policy reflected the Bank’s recognition of the rapid paceof globalization and the sharply increased attention to global issues within thedevelopment community. In September 2000, the Development Committeeof the Bank and the IMF endorsed the Bank’s priorities in supporting globalpublic goods; those priorities focus on five areas: public health, protection ofthe global commons, financial stability, trade, and knowledge.

Finally, in addition to its own programs, the World Bank is active in manyglobal partnership programs that address global issues. Through its participa-tion in these programs, the Bank plays an important role in collective action ona variety of global issues. Besides CGIAR, examples include the Global Fund toFight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria; the Global Environment Facility; andthe Consultative Group to Assist the Poorest. The Bank looks forward to con-tinuing and strengthening these partnerships while continuing to pursue itsown initiatives on global issues—alongside its traditional country-based pro-jects, many of which also contribute to building a healthier global community.

Notes1. The International Task Force on Global Public Goods (http://www.gpgtaskforce.org) was created

through an agreement between France and Sweden signed in April 2003. The Task Force’s man-date is to assess and prioritize international public goods, both global and regional, and make rec-ommendations to policy makers and other stakeholders on how to improve and expand theirprovision.

2. See, for example, Lomborg (2004), Rischard (2002), and the Web site Facing the Future(http://www.facingthefuture.org). An alternative list of global issues can be found athttp://www.un.org/issues.

3. The full list of MDGs appears in chapter 21 of this book; for more on the MDGs go tohttp://www.un.org/millenniumgoals.

4. The team consists of leading scholars, development practitioners, and experts from around theworld and is supported by the Human Development Report Office of the UN DevelopmentProgramme. For more details go to http://hdr.undp.org/hd.

5. For a comprehensive discussion of the evolution of the international system and its strengths andweaknesses, see chapter 2 of Dervis and Ozer (2005).

6. This section draws on Wolfensohn and Bourguignon (2004).7. See World Bank (2006a). 8. World Bank and International Monetary Fund (2003, chapter 12).

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Bhargava, V. K. (Ed.). (2006). Global issues for global citizens : An introduction to key development challenges. World Bank Publications.Created from ashford-ebooks on 2022-05-07 03:04:30.

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Selected Readings and Cited ReferencesDervis, Kemal, and Ceren Ozer. 2005. A Better Globalization: Legitimacy, Governance,

and Reform. Washington, DC: Center for Global Development.Diamond, Jared. 2005. Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed. New York:

Penguin Group. (See especially chapters 14 and 16.)Lomborg, Bjorn, ed. 2004. Global Crises, Global Solutions. Cambridge, United

Kingdom: Cambridge University Press. Rischard, Jean-François. 2002. High Noon: Twenty Global Problems, Twenty Years to

Solve Them. New York: Basic Books.Sachs, Jeffrey D. 2005. The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time. New

York: Penguin Press. (See especially chapter 1.)Stiglitz, Joseph E. 2003. Globalization and Its Discontents. New York: Norton. (See

especially chapter 2.) Wolfensohn, James, and François Bourguignon. 2004. “Development and Poverty

Reduction: Looking Back, Looking Ahead.” Paper prepared for the October 2004Annual Meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, WorldBank, Washington, DC. (See especially Parts 1 and 2.)

World Bank. 2003. World Development Report 2003: Sustainable Development in aDynamic World. New York: Oxford University Press. (See especially the Overview.)

. 2006a. World Development Report 2006: Equity and Development.Washington, DC.

. 2006b. The Road to 2050: Sustainable Development for the 21st Century.Washington, DC.

World Bank and International Monetary Fund. 2003. Global Monitoring Report 2003.Washington, DC.

Global Issues for Global Citizens28

Bhargava, V. K. (Ed.). (2006). Global issues for global citizens : An introduction to key development challenges. World Bank Publications.Created from ashford-ebooks on 2022-05-07 03:04:30.

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