The World Bank's Support for Science and Technology

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Science  18 Jan 1985:
Vol. 227, Issue 4684, pp. 261-265
DOI: 10.1126/science.227.4684.261


The World Bank, the largest aid-granting agency in the world, has played a substantial but largely unsung role in helping the scientific and technological development of developing countries. Its investments, totaling $15.5 billion in fiscal year 1984, involve choosing appropriate technology and financing local technological development. Since 1980, the Bank has lent $0.5 billion for agricultural research and about $1 billion for scientific and technological education. It contributes to and mobilizes finances for large international research programs in agriculture and the health sciences. It supports research on labor-based construction, low-cost sanitation, renewable energy resources, and control of traffic congestion. It provides training in the technological aspects of development policy. As funds for aid become scarce, the Bank is reexamining its approach to science and technology.