Newly Released World Bank Dataset a Step Forward for Aid Transparency
As a first step, we generated some basic descriptive statistics to gain a better understanding of overall trends in the data. We first converted all six point measures to binary variables: we re-categorized all projects as either “successful” (projects rated moderately satisfactory, satisfactory, or highly satisfactory) or “unsuccessful” (projects rated moderately unsatisfactory, unsatisfactory, or highly unsatisfactory).
After converting the data, we broke down project success by region. The regional groupings fall into three tiers.
Europe, East Asia, and Central Asia all have around 80% project success rates. Meanwhile, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and North Africa, and South Asia all have close to 75% success rates. Africa lags behind, with project success rates just above 60%. Future research might examine the source of this disparity between Africa and other regions. It would also be interesting to explore the linkages between country performance, World Bank monitoring and evaluation, and project success.
After analyzing the data by region, we also disaggregated project outcomes by the decade in which the project was initiated.
In the coming weeks, we’ll be releasing some more posts with additional analysis of these data. The World Bank's IEG should be commended for placing these data in the public domain. We are not aware of any other donor that has published such comprehensive project implementation and evaluation data.
This post was contributed by AidData research assistants Ben Buch (William and Mary '12) and Doug Nicholson (William and Mary '12).