Are sector-based approaches to climate change becoming obsolete?

That was the question posed to participants during the World Bank’s Sustainable Development events, a fortnight ago. The central proposition was that climate change is a cross-cutting issue, and so the World Bank’s traditional, sector-based approach is too narrow and will fail to address adequately the unique challenges posed by climate change.

Warren Evans, Senior Adviser at the Sustainable Development Network of the World Bank and moderator of the event, polled participants at the start of session to get their initial views on the proposition, before the ‘programmatic = promised land’ and ‘programmatic = no-man’s land’ arguments were put forward by people on either side of the debate. Speakers included Idah Pswaryi-Riddihough, Director in the South Asia region; Francoise Clottes, Country Director for 13 Caribbean countries; Todd Johnson, Lead Energy Specialist in Colombia and Mexico; Bill Magrath, Lead Natural Resource Economist in South Asia; Stacy Swann, Head of the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC’s) Blended Finance Unit (blending concessional finance with IFC resources); and Tim Brown, Senior Natural Resources Management Specialist in the Indonesia country office.

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