World Development Report 2004
Making Services Work for People
The World Development Report is the annual flagship publication from the World Bank. Led by Shanta Devarajan and Ritva Reinikka, this edition focuses on making public services work for poor people. WDR 2004 presents a thorough examination of programmes designed to supply health, education, and public utility services in developing regions throughout the world.
Recognizing the formidable challenges posed in reaching the goal of providing effective services for poor citizens, a framework is proposed for making public services more effective and for ensuring that they are targeted directly at those areas that are most in need. The report emphasizes the need to include program beneficiaries in this process by broadening their choice and participation in the delivery of these services.
By putting poor people at the center of service delivery, the goal is to make these services more effective for both the service providers and the service beneficiaries. While tangible results can be measured in terms of overall economic growth, the most important criteria for determining the success of these programmes is the extent to which they make it possible for service recipients to escape poverty.
Creating a framework of relationships among clients, providers, and policymakers increases the voice of poor citizens in making these services work better. While acknowledging that there is no single solution that meets the needs of every situation, improved access to information represents one of the most powerful means available to poor citizens in helping them to achieve the goals set forth in the World Development Report 2004.
The core team who produced the World Development Report 2004 includes Shantayanan Devarajan, Ritva Reinikka, Junaid Ahmad, Stephen Commins, Deon Filmer, Jeffrey Hammer, Lant Pritchett, Shekhar Shah, Agnès Soucat, and Junaid Ahmad. Many thanks to Vicky Sugui for her contribution to this review. For more information, please visit the WDR 2004 website