Board Approves Resolutions to Establish the World Bank Accountability Mechanism and Add Tools to the Panel

The World Bank Board of Executive Directors on September 8 approved a resolution establishing the World Bank Accountability Mechanism (AM) that will house the Inspection Panel to carry out compliance reviews and a newly created Dispute Resolution Service to give complainants another way to have their concerns addressed. The Board also approved an updated Inspection Panel resolution that adds tools to the Panel. The Board agreed to allow communities more time – up to 15 months after the closure of new projects – to file complaints and gave the Panel the authority, with Board approval, to verify the implementation of Management Action Plans in some cases. Panel members will continue to report to the Board. The two resolutions formalize decisions made by the Board in October 2018 and March 2020 during its three-year review of the Panel’s toolkit that began after the Bank approved its new Environmental and Social Framework. The Panel welcomes the changes and looks forward to working with all stakeholders as part of the AM. More

World Bank Invites Applications for Accountability Mechanism Secretary

The World Bank is inviting applications for the new position of Accountability Mechanism Secretary through November 6. Among the duties of the AM Secretary are establishing and managing the Accountability Mechanism’s work program, budget and staffing, and overseeing the Dispute Resolution Service. More details about the job and how to apply can be found here. The selection procedures for the position can be found here.

Panel Hosts Discussion on What the Toolkit Reforms Mean for Communities

The Inspection Panel on October 21 hosted a virtual discussion about the changes approved by the Board to the Bank’s accountability framework and what they mean for project-affected communities. The discussion was chaired by Panel Executive Secretary Dilek Barlas and included comments from World Bank Executive Director Juergen Zattler, chair of the Board’s Committee on Development Effectiveness, Panel Chair Imrana Jalal and Jolie Schwarz, policy director for the Bank Information Center. To watch a video of the discussion, click here.

Panel to Release Advisory Report on Gender-Based Violence in December

The Inspection Panel on December 9 will host the virtual launch of a new advisory report based on its two recent investigations involving gender-based violence in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The report, the latest in the Panel’s Emerging Lessons Series, is being released to coincide with the United Nations’ “16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence.” Look for more details on the launch event starting in mid-November.

Panel Publishes Fiscal Year 2020 Annual Report

The Inspection Panel published its fiscal year 2020 annual report on October 1. The report provides summaries of Panel cases, details about the Board of Executive Directors’ review of the Panel toolkit, a message from the Panel, the Panel budget, biographical information on each Panel member and the Panel executive secretary, and graphs detailing the Panel’s casework since it began operations. The report is now available on the Panel’s website. It also can be found here.


NEPAL: Nepal-India Regional Trade and Transport Project – Board Approves Delay in Panel Investigation Recommendation

The Board of Executive Directors on September 22, 2020, approved the Inspection Panel’s request to postpone the deadline for its recommendation on whether an investigation of the project is warranted. Citing its inability to conduct its eligibility visit to Nepal due to travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Panel requested a postponement until four weeks from the date that Bank missions to Nepal are reauthorized and national travel restrictions that would inhibit the Panel team from visiting the project area have been lifted. The Request for Inspection of the project was submitted on April 25, 2020, by nine community members from the Kirtipur Municipality in southern Kathmandu. The Requesters claim to be adversely affected by the Chobhar dry port, one of the project’s subcomponents, alleging non-compliance with the World Bank’s policies on Environmental Assessment, Indigenous Peoples, Physical Cultural Resources and Involuntary Resettlement. More

PERU: Cusco Transport Improvement Project – Panel Issues Notice of Registration

The Inspection Panel on September 28, 2020, issued a Notice of Registration for a Request for Inspection of the project. The Request was submitted on July 16, 2020, by two individuals who state their land is being taken without compensation to make way for an expressway – the Via Expresa Avenue – built under the project. The Requesters allege non-compliance with the Bank’s Policy on Involuntary Resettlement and a lack of consultation and disclosure of information. They also raise concern about retaliation and allege that tenants, who rented and occupied the land, were forcibly evicted. More

UGANDA: North-Eastern Road-corridor Asset Management Program – Panel Files Notice of Receipt

The Panel on October 16, 2020, filed a Notice of Receipt of a Request for Inspection of the project. The Requesters allege that they have suffered harm from the project due to insufficient compensation for their land, destruction of their crops, properties and houses, and non-disclosure of project information. They also raise concern about retaliation and reprisals in their Request. The Panel is currently reviewing the Request in accordance with its procedures to determine its admissibility. More

BRAZIL: Teresina Enhancing Municipal Governance and Quality of Life Project Additional Financing – Panel Investigation Report is with the Board

The Panel’s Investigation Report is with the Board for its consideration. The Panel submitted the report to the Board on July 22, 2020, and later shared it virtually with Requesters on a confidential basis so they could meaningfully take part in the consultation on the Management Action Plan (MAP) responding to the Panel’s findings. A Panel team had visited Brazil from March 9 to 18, 2020, and met with all relevant stakeholders. The Requesters express their support for the project but oppose their resettlement and claim alternate project designs would enable them to remain in their homes. They contend community members have been living in these locations for decades and that, by displacing their community, the project will cause cultural, social and economic harm. More

INDIA: Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project for Low Income States – Panel Investigation Report Remains with the Board

The Panel Investigation Report is with the Board. The Panel submitted the report in January 2020 and shared it with Requesters in February 2020 so they could meaningfully participate in the consultations on the Management Action Plan (MAP). Preparation of the MAP continues to be delayed because travel restrictions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic have affected Bank management’s ability to finish consultations with the affected communities. The Request for Inspection claims, among other things, that a water treatment plant and an elevated storage reservoir financed by the project were built on land that has religious and cultural significance to tribal communities and is causing harm to them. More

Panel Participates in 17th Annual Meeting of IAM Network

Inspection Panel members and staff participated in the virtual annual meeting of the Independent Accountability Mechanisms (IAM) Network on September 22-24. Inspection Panel Chair Imrana Jalal spoke at a session on institutional reviews of IAM mandates and operations and shared the Panel’s experience with the just-completed review of its toolkit by the Board of Executive Directors. Panel Executive Secretary Dilek Barlas spoke at a discussion with civil society organization representatives on the topic of barriers to the eligibility of complaints filed with the IAMs, explaining how the Panel works with complainants to address technical barriers. Other topics discussed during the annual meeting included the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for IAM operations and providing remedy to communities. More

Panel Chair Takes Part in CSPF Session on World Bank Accountability and Communities

Inspection Panel Chair Imrana Jalal on October 6 took part in a discussion titled “Are the World Bank Group’s Accountability Systems Working for Communities?” The session was part of the virtual Civil Society Policy Forum at the International Monetary Fund-World Bank Group Annual Meetings and was sponsored by the Center for International Environmental Law, the Bank Information Center and Accountability Counsel. Among her remarks, Ms. Jalal said it was “fair comment” to say that complaints to independent accountability mechanisms like the Panel had led to “mixed results” for communities but added that some cases had led to positive change, and in some instances that change has been transformative. More

Panel Continues Virtual Outreach with Civil Society

The Inspection Panel continued its virtual outreach to civil society during the late summer months as Panel members and staff continued to work from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. On August 26, Operations Officer Birgit Kuba explained the Panel’s mandate and operations to the monthly meeting of the Movement for Community-led Development (MCLD). Camila Jorge do Amaral, an Inspection Panel consultant who worked on two recent cases in Brazil, represented the Panel at workshops on September 3 and 10 for civil society and community groups in that country. Civil society groups interested in taking part in a virtual workshop can contact the Panel at

Panel Hosts Discussion with Columbia University Human Rights Advocates Program

The Inspection Panel on October 19 hosted a virtual discussion with participants in the Human Rights Advocates Program at Columbia University on the Panel’s mandate and procedures and recent changes to the Panel’s toolkit approved by the Board of Executive Directors. Founded in 1989, the Human Rights Advocates Program provides grassroots leaders the tools, knowledge, access and networks to strengthen their organizations and promote human rights. Participants in this year’s program come from Georgia, Ghana, Greece, India, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Mexico and Nigeria. More


The Inspection Panel is an independent complaints mechanism for people and communities who believe that they have been, or are likely to be, adversely affected by a World Bank-funded project. The Board of Executive Directors created the Inspection Panel in 1993 to ensure that people have access to an independent body to which to express their concerns and seek recourse. The Panel is an impartial fact-finding body, independent from the World Bank management and staff, reporting directly to the Board. The Inspection Panel process aims to promote accountability at the World Bank, give affected people a greater voice in activities supported by the World Bank that affect their rights and interests, and foster redress when warranted. Once the World Bank Accountability Mechanism becomes operational in 2021, it will house both the Panel to carry out compliance reviews and a new Dispute Resolution Service.