My Work at the Bank
I realized a while ago that many of you – my family and friends – do not really know what I work with here at the World Bank Country Office in Chisinau. There is alway so much else to talk about when we meet, so I thought I would give you an insight in my work program and what a normal workday for me looks like here on the blog instead, especially since I only have a few more months left here.
My work program now is quite different from the one described when I applied for this job more than two years ago. The first Terms of Reference that I got at first was quite vague and so I asked my boss if I could continue to work partly on agriculture, to build on my experience from FAO, which he thought was a good idea. Since, other things have also landed on my desk for different reasons, and so my work program is now quite broad but also very interesting.
Thus, my work here is basically divided according to the following:
50%: Agriculture and rural development, and agricultural policies;
25%: Governance and anti-corruption;
15%: Issues related to the responsibility of the Management Unit.
It might seem a bit scattered in terms of topics, and in a way it is. But governance and anti-corruption as well as migration are interesting to get some insight in because from the Bank’s perspective, these topics are cross-sectoral. And just like for example a gender perspective and an environmental perspective should be taken into account in all sector work, so should governance and anti-corruption, and if applicable, migration. So it has been both interesting and useful to work with these issues.
These past two years, my work has in part involved pure analytical work, i.e. analyzing data, writing chapters for studies and reports, back-ground papers for the Bank’s up-coming country strategy, etc. This part of my work has also included commenting on Government policies (the ones that they ask us to comment on of course), and sometimes on reports, strategies and proposed projects of other donors. Another part of my work has been to monitor the implementation of a number of policies in the agricultural sector, which the government has committed to. In the area of governance and anti-corruption, I have mainly been involved in enhancing the Bank’s governance and anti-corruption program here in Moldova according to its global governance and anti-corruption strategy of 2007. Until now, I have not been involved so much in project preparation and project implementation (only at some very early stage in the project cycle), but hopefully, I will do more of that in the future.
On a day-to-day basis, my schedule very much depends on if I have a team here from DC or our regional office in Kyiv, or not. If I do not have a visiting team here, I normally spend a lot of time in my office, doing analytical work and following up on things via e-mail. I also meet with my counterparts in the Government on a regular basis, as well as with donors and with relevant civil society organizations, both in larger meetings and more informally. In all the areas that I work, I have arranged a number of consultations and roundtable discussions, which is always interesting.
If I have visiting teams here, the schedule is more intense and we normally have meetings all day, with Government, civil society, private sector, and donors, depending on the purpose of the visit. When I have agricultural teams here, we go out in the rural areas a lot, which is one of the best parts with my job. We meet farmers and hear directly from them what in their view are the main concerns and obstacles for agricultural development. We then meet with Government representatives and Government officials and discuss the feedback from the farmers, as well as statistics and results of different policies.
Does it sound boring? It isn’t!
Me in my office (and yes, it is normally more disorganized!)