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The Matrix System at Work

The Matrix System at Work

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The 1997 Bank reforms that introduced the matrix management concept aimed to adapt the organization to changing circumstances and address concerns among external stakeholders about the role of aid in development. The reforms were motivated largely by widespread recognition that the Bank’s development programs were excessively driven by a culture of lending, with insufficient attention to client needs and the quality of results, which are crucial to development effectiveness. A previous round of reforms in 1987 had strengthened the country focus, but quality remained a concern. Furthermore, access of developing countries to development finance from the private sector had increased significantly, leading to a decreasing share of official development aid, including Bank financing, in total flows to developing countries. By the mid-1990s, pressure for change was acute. The 1997 reforms tried to address these challenges through a new set of organizational arrangements, increased decentralization, and matrix management. The most frequent rationale for a matrix structure is to balance competing priorities, combine capabilities for market advantage, share resources for efficiency, and retain flexibility to redeploy resources in the face of changing priorities and a diversified client base. The matrix system - a dual matrix, Bank-wide between the six Regions and four networks, and in each Region between Country Management Units and Sector Management Units - was to be facilitated by dual accountability for technical quality and an internal labor market for staff renewal and mobility. It has been more than a decade since the 1997 reorganization, and concerns that the matrix system is not delivering on its promise persist. This evaluation assesses the extent to which the dual objectives of the matrix system - enhancing client responsiveness and establishing strong technical networks to deliver quality services - have been attained and have enhanced the Bank’s development effectiveness. The evaluation focuses on implementation of the current matrix system rather than on the 1997 matrix design and follows an objectives-based approach to assess the relevance and effectiveness of the matrix reform until 2010. To the extent feasible, the evaluation also examines the efficiency of matrix arrangements.

The 1997 Bank reforms that introduced the matrix management concept aimed to adapt the organization to changing circumstances and address concerns among external stakeholders about the role of aid in development. The reforms were motivated largely by widespread recognition that the Bank’s development programs were excessively driven by a culture of lending, with insufficient attention to client needs and the quality of results, which are crucial to development effectiveness. A previous round of reforms in 1987 had strengthened the country focus, but quality remained a concern. Furthermore, access of developing countries to development finance from the private sector had increased significantly, leading to a decreasing share of official development aid, including Bank financing, in total flows to developing countries. By the mid-1990s, pressure for change was acute. The 1997 reforms tried to address these challenges through a new set of organizational arrangements, increased decentralization, and matrix management. The most frequent rationale for a matrix structure is to balance competing priorities, combine capabilities for market advantage, share resources for efficiency, and retain flexibility to redeploy resources in the face of changing priorities and a diversified client base. The matrix system - a dual matrix, Bank-wide between the six Regions and four networks, and in each Region between Country Management Units and Sector Management Units - was to be facilitated by dual accountability for technical quality and an internal labor market for staff renewal and mobility. It has been more than a decade since the 1997 reorganization, and concerns that the matrix system is not delivering on its promise persist. This evaluation assesses the extent to which the dual objectives of the matrix system - enhancing client responsiveness and establishing strong technical networks to deliver quality services - have been attained and have enhanced the Bank’s development effectiveness. The evaluation focuses on implementation of the current matrix system rather than on the 1997 matrix design and follows an objectives-based approach to assess the relevance and effectiveness of the matrix reform until 2010. To the extent feasible, the evaluation also examines the efficiency of matrix arrangements.

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Publish date: Jul 30, 2012
Added to Scribd: Aug 14, 2012
Copyright:Attribution

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09/17/2013

 
The Matrix Systemat Work
April 2012
An Evaluation of the World Bank’sOrganizational Effectiveness
 
Th W B Gup
WorkinG for a World free of PoverTy
The World Bank Group consists o ve institutions – the International Bank orReconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Finance Corporation(IFC), the International Development Association (IDA), the MultilateralInvestment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre or theSettlement o Investment Disputes (ICSID).
 
Its mission is to ght povertyor lasting results and to help people help themselves and their environmentby providing resources, sharing knowledge, building capacity, and orgingpartnerships in the public and private sectors.
Th ipt eut Gup
iMProvinG THe World Bank GroUP’S develoPMenT reSUlTS THroUGHeXCellenCe in evalUaTion
The Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) is an independent unit within theWorld Bank Group.
 
It reports directly to the Board o Executive Directors, whichoversees IEG’s work through its Committee on Development Eectiveness.
 
IEGis charged with evaluating the activities o the World Bank (the InternationalBank or Reconstruction and Development and the International DevelopmentAssociation), the work o the International Finance Corporation in privatesector development, and the guarantee projects and services o the MultilateralInvestment Guarantee Agency.The goals o evaluation are to learn rom experience, to provide an objectivebasis or assessing the results o the Bank Group’s work, and to provideaccountability in the achievement o its objectives.
 
It also improves Bank Groupwork by identiying and disseminating the lessons learned rom experience andby raming recommendations drawn rom evaluation ndings.

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