Published September 2017
Multilateral development banking for 21st century challenges: Addressing global public goods
By Scott Morris and Priscilla Atansah

Scott Morris is a Senior Fellow at the Center for Global Development and Director of the US Development Policy Initiative.

Priscilla Atansah is Research Assistant at the Center for Global Development.

The Center for Global Development works to change the policies and practices of rich countries and powerful institutions to reduce global poverty and inequality. The US Development Policy Initiative seeks to broaden the US government’s approach to development, including the full range of investment, trade, and technology policies, while also strengthening existing foreign assistance tools.

In the discussions that took place in the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) dialogues on the reform of the United Nations Development System (UNDS) over the last two years, finance was identified as one of the key dimensions of the system that required serious reform. In the informality of the corridors it was frequently heard that reform of the financing system is a prerequisite for the achievement of broader reform. A core concept in this critique was that funding had to be better aligned with purpose and that in this sense finance follows function.