Reviving a Role for the Bretton Woods Institutions

Kathryn C. Lavelle

in Legislating International Organization

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199765348
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918959 | DOI:
Reviving a Role for the Bretton Woods Institutions

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In this chapter, the IMF, World Bank, and Congress entered the revived stage of the relationship among them. The revival was triggered externally by the international dimensions of the 2008 financial crisis. Internal change in the legislature came from the election of democratic President Barack Obama, ending the earlier period of divided government. The chapter argues that through congressional advocacy efforts, the IMF received an increase in its New Arrangements to Borrow, following an informal agreement to modify some conditionality and transparency practices. The World Bank achieved the authorization and appropriation for the fifteenth replenishment of the International Development Association, with provisions over the use of the labor indicator in the Doing Business report. The role of the IMF in the Eurozone bailouts associated with the Greek and Irish crises is not conclusive in 2011. However, the era of divided government that facilitated a certain degree of support for the Bretton Woods institutions ended with the close of the 111th Congress. The length and character of the revival faces the obstacle of the collapse of the traditional constituencies of support for the IMF and World Bank in the international banking communities in the long term.

Keywords: 2008 financial crisis; Doing Business report; International Development Association; New Arrangements to Borrow; Barack Obama; Eurozone; Greek crisis; Irish crisis

Chapter.  8397 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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