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From The World Bank Group

World Development Report 2006: Equity and Development

The World Development Report (WDR) 2006 will explore the role of equity in development.
Inequalities in incomes, in health and in educational outcomes have long been a stark fact of life in many developing countries. These are often accompanied by profound differences in influence, power and social status, whether at the level of individuals or groups.
High inequalities strike many people as intrinsically unfair. But ethical concerns are not the only reasons to care about equity:

  • High levels of inequalities in different dimensions make it harder to reduce poverty and to meet the Millennium Development Goals.
  • High inequalities can also be associated with a greater prevalence of crime and violence and, in some cases, broader social conflicts.
  • Crime, social conflict and weak institutions, in turn, poison the climate for investment and reduce the capacity of governments to deliver public goods and basic services.

What the report is likely to cover
The World Development Report 2006 will:

  • describe current levels of and recent trends in inequalities along some key dimensions, both within and across countries;
  • discuss whether such inequalities matter and, if so, how it may be possible to  reduce them in ways which, rather than harming economic efficiency and growth, may indeed help promote them;
  • explore the role of domestic policies and international forces, and the potential for international action to reduce inequalities.

See the Outline of the report.
The report complements both the  WDR 2004 which focused on service delivery to the poor, and the WDR 2005, which is focusing on improving the investment climate – and thus the potential for economic growth – across the developing world.