Avoiding Delays with Environmentally Risky Projects
In response to failures to protect local people from environmental harm in development projects, the multilateral development banks established safeguard procedures. These procedures require environmental reviews of all projects before they can be approved. Because staff at the multilateral development banks have strong incentives to avoid delays to the approval of projects, results from evaluations provide information about likely delays because of low borrower performance or commitment. Since staff and management have strong incentives to approve projects, safeguard procedures have caused both the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank to practice selectivity related to environmentally risky projects. This result does not hold for the African Development Bank, which did not implement strong safeguard procedures during the study period.
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