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After decades of poor economic performance, Africa is doing much better, with higher economic growth. Why? What role did aid play? And what are the lessons for the Pacific? Jim Adams knows both Africa and the Pacific well. In the 2013 Harold Mitchell Development Policy Lecture, he focused on how effective economic reform emerged in Africa and related institutional and capacity issues. Drawing on this and his Pacific experience, he reviewed a number of proposals that could be taken by donors in the Pacific to accelerate economic reform and support the emergence of improved government institutions and capacity on policy making.
Jim Adams retired a year ago after 37 years at the World Bank. His last assignment was as the Vice President for East Asia and the Pacific from 2007 – 2012, where he worked on and travelled extensively in the Pacific island region. He spent almost half of his career working on Africa, leading the Bank’s program as the Regional Director in Kenya in the late 1980s and as Country Director in Tanzania and Uganda from 1995-2002. From 2002 to 2007 he served as the head of operational policy in the Bank, overseeing a program directed at making the Bank more responsive to its clients’ needs. Jim is a graduate of Colgate University and received his Masters degree from Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. Among his current duties, Jim Adams serves as Chair of AusAID’s Independent Evaluation Committee.
The Harold Mitchell Development Policy Annual Lecture Series, of which this is the second, has been created to provide a new forum at which the most pressing development issues can be addressed by the best minds and most influential practitioners of our time.
This lecture was presented by the Development Policy Centre at Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.