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Africa Regional Vice Presidency
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Records of the Africa Regional Vice Presidency

  • Fonds
  • 1946-2010

The countries included in the Africa region (AFR) have remained constant throughout its history, with the exception being the removal of northern African countries (Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, and Morocco) into the Europe and Middle East Department (EME) in 1965. These countries have since remained in regional units responsible for Middle East countries. Records related to operations in these countries are not included in this fonds.

This fonds has been provisionally arranged into 13 series. Sub-headings are used to break up the content of this field according to provisional series. For a complete list of the provisional series, see the "System of Arrangement" field.

Operational records

The majority of the records in this fonds are country operational records. The records in the "operational records" series broadly consist of project records relating to the negotiation and administration of loans as well as general country records relating to economic and sector study. These records were created by Area Departments (1947-1972), Country Departments (CDs, 1972-1997) and Country Management Units (CMUs, 1997-2010) as well as the Economic Department (1946-1952), Technical Operations Department (TOD, 1952-1965), Projects Department (1965-1972) and regional project departments (1972 - 1987), technical departments (1987 - 1997), and sector departments (1997 - 2010). See the "Administrative history" field for a history of these units and their functions.

Records related to the Bank's projects overseen by AFR are contained in the "operational records" series. These records relate to investment, structural adjustment, and other development projects financed, co-financed, and / or managed by the Bank. Note that projects funded or co-funded by external bodies such as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), national governments, and trust funds but which were executed by the Bank are included.

Records relating to all phases of the World Bank Project Cycle, from conception through negotiation and completion,are found here. Project records contained in this fonds were created by both the unit identified as the designated record keeping unit within the Region and, in smaller number, the regional units that provided project support. Included are records relating to not only completed projects but also to abandoned (or dropped) projects (i.e. projects that were abandoned in the course of preparation or that failed to gain Board approval) and suspended projects (i.e. approved projects, including those partially disbursed, which were suspended and not resumed). Records related to the discussion and negotiation of projects that were never initiated are also included.

Correspondence files make up the bulk of the project records and relate to the identification, preparation, appraisal, negotiation, approval, supervision, fund disbursement, completion, and review of each individual project. Correspondence is in the form of letters, printed email, memoranda, telexes, and faxes. Accompanying materials most often include aide-memoires, minutes of meetings, Terms of Reference, and back-to-office reports. Correspondence is between the Bank and government officials, ambassadors, institutions, contractors, and consultants.

Project records may also include: Project Implementation Index File (PIIF) documents; executive project summary/project concept documents; annual progress reports; supplemental documents; Project Completion Reports (PCRs, also known as Completion Reports); consultant reports; supervision reports; and final versions of mandatory reports. A small amount of project-related newspaper clippings, financial statements, photographs, hand-written notes, maps, engineering plans, and copies of loan agreements and related documents may also be found. External documents received from borrowers, governments, contractors, consultants, etc., including studies, reports, plans, specifications, PIIF documents, etc., are also included.

General country files are also included in the "operational records" series. These refer to correspondence (often in the form of chronological files), topical and subject files, and other records related to IBRD/IDA lending programs, other than those maintained for individual loans and credits. Records relate to economic, social, and sector work study, research, analysis, and the development of sector and country programs, policies, and strategies. Specifically, these records might relate to: capital markets; indebtedness; investment law; missions to the country; technical assistance; disbursement; government relations; inquiries; local bond issues; cofinancing; consultative groups; aid groups; country liaison; resident representatives; Country Program Papers (CPP) preparation; and Project Implementation Review (PIR). Records relating to and filed according to the various sectors of investment are also included. In each series, country sector files may include but are not limited to: agriculture; education; energy; industrial development and finance; industry; population; health; nutrition; telecommunications; tourism; transportation; urban development; water and sewage; governance; public sector development; private sector development; and social development. General country file records take the form of correspondence, memoranda, minutes of meetings, notes for files, back-to-office reports, aide-memoires, briefing papers, and reports. Records relating to other analytical and advisory activities (AAA) and the related collection of data for these activities may also be included. These records may include research material in the form of surveys and spreadsheets and guides created or used for analysis or processing of data.

Country-specific records relating to country program management are also included in the "operational records" series. These records were maintained primarily by the Country Department headquarter units and were used to document Bank Group assistance planning and strategy for each country. Records may relate to the creation of Bank reports such as: the Country Assistance Strategy (CAS); Country Briefs; Country Strategy Papers; Country Economic Memoranda; Medium Term Framework Papers; and policy statements. These records take the form of: agendas; briefings and reports of country team meetings; final versions of reports; consultant reports on specific sector or project issues; meeting summaries and notes; and background materials used in the preparation of reports. Briefing papers prepared for Annual Meetings and other reports to management may also be included.

Also included are informational records related to each country and to development issues specific to that country. Many of the topics covered in these records are focused on the various development sectors. These records primarily contain externally created reference material, although a small amount of internally generated material (such as press releases, speeches and addresses, and material related to internally sponsored conferences and seminars) may also be included. Reference materials may include: lists of government officials; information on external consultants; newspaper clippings related to country matters; press releases related to Bank and country activities; correspondence with government officials and/or ministries; and documents related to the activities of field offices in the country. Also included, in small amounts, are books, journals, magazines, articles, extracts, directories, manuals, handbooks, guides, and dissertations originating from elsewhere in the Bank Group or of external origin. Topics include common development sectors (agriculture, transportation, education, etc.) as they relate to specific countries as well as: resettlement; indigenous peoples; participation; Global Environment Facility (GEF); World Bank operation policies; country politics, legislation and economic situation; debt; cofinancing and trust funds; and natural resource management.

Regional operational records related to the Africa Region are also included in this fonds. Included are the records of projects or programs that span more than a single country, such as the founding of new regional banks, the establishment of a common market, tourism projects, and the creation of regional infrastructure, such as roads, ports, electric power generation and telecommunications. Records relating to the Region's participation in interrelated development activities that have been aggregated into a coordinated development program are also included. These include, for example, the Onchocerciasis Control Programme and the Sub-Saharan Africa Transport Program (SSATP). The types of project-related records are similar to those described in the country operational records above. Also included are general records related to economic, social and sector work study and analysis and the development of sector and regional programs, policies, and strategies. In terms of topic and form, these records are also similar to the general operational records described above. However, records relate to either the region as a whole or to multi-country areas of the region.

Project auditing

Series contains records relating to the regular auditing of Bank-funded projects in the Africa region conducted by the Operational Quality and Knowledge (AFTQK) department within AFR. Records primarily contain audit reports produced by external firms but may also contain: correspondence; project appraisal documents; legal agreements; and implementation completion reports.

Departmental subject files, reference materials, and correspondence files

Non-country specific reference materials and subject files maintained by regional departments including both country departments and sector units are included in this fonds. Topics include the various development sectors as well as Bank operational topics such as: policy development; project identification; project procurement; consultants; exports; macroeconomic stability and growth; and private sector assessment. Reference materials may originate from elsewhere within the Bank or external to the Bank and may include: books; journals; magazines; newspaper clippings; articles; extracts, directories; manuals; handbooks; guides; Bank reports; and dissertations. Subject files related to sector-related organizations are also included. These records may include: reports published or disseminated by associations; correspondence between the Bank and organizations; meeting related records; and coordination records.

External aid coordination

Series consists of records relating to the development and implementation of strategies for cofinancing and other instances of aid coordination. Records originate in country and sector departments and relate to cooperative relationships between the Bank Group and donors, cofinanciers, development agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and other concerned organizations. Specifically, records may relate to: collaborative development assistance; Bank-sponsored seminars and conferences; cofinancing and trust funds; the Special Program for Assistance (SPA) in Africa; the Consultant Trust Fund Program (CTFP); and external funding for consultants. Records may include: copies of agreements and other legal documents; initiating briefs; reports and memoranda concerning disbursement of cofinanced funds; periodic reports to cofinanciers; and other related materials. Series also contains correspondence files of the Regional Cofinancing Advisor. Records were created while the position was held by Philip Birnham (1985 to 1995) and by Alison Rosenberg (1995 to 1998). The records relate to overall coordination of cofinancing forthe Africa Region and, specifically, to the Special Program of Assistance (SPA) for Africa.

The series also contains records documenting the establishment, proceedings and activities of the consultative groups and aid groups convened and chaired by the Bank to coordinate external financial assistance and which the Bank provided secretarial support to. These include consultative groups for Nigeria (1962), Sudan (1963), Ghana (sponsored by Bank from 1970 after participation under IMF sponsorship since 1967), East Africa (1968), Ethiopia (1971), Zaire - Democratic Republic of Congo (1971), Tanzania (1977), Uganda (1978), Zambia (1978), Mauritius (1980), Somalia (1983), Sao Tome and Principe (1984), Senegal (1984), Zambia (1984), Mauritania (1985), Gambia (1986), Madagascar (1986), Malawi (1986), Mozambique (1987), Guinea (1987), Zimbabwe (1992), Eritrea (1994), Sierra Leone (1994), Angola (1995), and Cote d'Ivoire (1995). Many of the consultative groups typically met bi-annually for several successive years or for longer than a decade such as Nigeria and Tanzania with Bank staff leading smaller sector or local consultative meetings in between the bi-annual group meetings. Files contain a large body of correspondence between the country department staff, the chairman who was typically the Area or Country Director for consultative groups, and donor members of the groups including the recipient country. Correspondence includes copies of outgoing memoranda and letters, cables, original letters from member government officials (some addressed to the Bank President), notes to the file, minutes of pre-consultative group meetings, sector, and/or local meetings, and drafts of documents. Topics covered by the correspondence include policies and practices of the consultative groups; its origins and establishment; changes in membership or participation; pledges and terms of aid by donor countries; and collaboration with International Monetary Fund and other multilateral participants or observers.

Also included are the set of official meeting documents of the earliest Bank-chaired Consultative Groups for Sudan and Nigeria and other countries aforementioned that contain: preliminary meeting summaries, notice of meeting, agenda, list of delegates, Bank-authored or government authored memoranda or economic reports and policy papers, Chairman's report of proceedings, transcripts or verbatim proceedings, participants statements, and press release. Meeting files also contain small amount of administrative correspondence authored bySecretary's department or the Area or Country Department concerning meeting preparations, distribution of documents, or announcements about participants in attendance of the meetings.

There is also a smaller volume of files relating to donor meetings or investor conferences chaired by the department, and consultative meetings or roundtables chaired by other organizations outside of the Bank including Organization for Economic Development (OECD) and United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in which the Bank participated beginning in the early 1970s. These include (but are not limited to) Central African Republic, Burundi, Benin, Cape Verde, Sao Tome and Principe, Guinea-Bissau, Rwanda, Lesotho, Togo and Mali.

Participation in external working and policy groups, committees, and other organizations

Series consists of records related to AFR staff participation in committees, task forces, working and policy groups, and other organizations external to, but in some cases sponsored by, the World Bank. Many of these organizations focus on regional cooperation, development, and research, such as the Central African Customs and Economic Union (UDEAC), the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA), the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), and the Global Coalition for Africa (GCA). Records may relate to administration, membership, and activities of organization, and the work or research undertaken or sponsored by the organization.

VP Subject files

Series contains records relating to a variety of activities of which the Office of the Africa Vice President are responsible or involved. These include: public relations; borrower feedback; VP reorganization; and VP unit evaluation and organization. The records include correspondence and internal memoranda related to the various activities, as well as country and thematic briefs and meeting materials. Records related to the Region's participation in and leadership of the joint World Bank-IMF Africa Club for staff are included. Asmall amount of audio visual material in the form of video and audio tapes are also included in this series. They include recordings of interviews, meetings, and social and cultural events. A small amount of records also relate to the visit of World Bank senior staff, including World Bank presidents, to African countries and meetings held with country leaders during these trips.

VP Correspondence

Series includes the chronological files of a number of AFR Vice Presidents, including: Vice President Edward Jaycox (1991-1996); jointly Jean-Louis Sarbib and Callisto Madavo (1996-1997, during which time the two shared the position of AFR Vice President); Gobind Nankani (2004-2007); and Obiageli Ezekwesili (2007-2008). Chronological files of the VP front office and individual front office staff are also included.

Series contains the "Commodity files" of Barend de Vries, Chief Economist for the Western Africa Department and Region between 1970 and 1975. Included are copies of memos and reports relating to international and regional production and pricing of various commodities. Also included are Bank produced reports on commodity trade and price trends and price forecasts as well as papers on population and family planning programs for Africa.

Departmental Communications and Support

Series relates to the activities of AFR departments asked, usually on an ad hoc basis, to respond to correspondence addressed to World Bank Group presidents, regional Vice Presidents, and other staff members.

Series also consistsof briefing books prepared for senior officials in preparation for visits to African countries as well as for participation in meetings, seminars, and speeches. Briefing books were created by AFR units including VP front office staff and were prepared for AFR senior officials as well as for other senior Bank staff including World Bank presidents and Executive Directors. These books commonly contain: program of country visit; background profiles on country leaders and officials; talking points; country overview; World Bank Group activities; visit and meeting briefs; project meeting briefs; and other World Bank authored reports which serve as background information. In some files, travel information accompanies or is part of the briefing books. A small amount of photographs of dignitaries and bank senior officials documenting their visits to resident missions is also included.

Business plan and budget management records

Series includes records relating to the business plan and budget management (i.e. planning, implementation, monitoring, and review) activities of the Region. These records include annual budget files created by the Region's budget and administrative units as well as Business Plans covering three-year periods and Retrospective and Mid-Year Reviews. Records relating to the budgets of country and technical departments are included primarily in the form of correspondence and budget reports and tools. Budget records created by the Regional VP, Country Departments, and the Regional Resource Management and Information Technology Department (AFTRM) are included.

Department directors' chronological files

Chronological files created and maintained by AFR country department directors and technical department directors are included in this series. These may include incoming and outgoing correspondence, copies of reports, and copies of other records created or received within the unit.

Procurement policy, assessment, review, and training

Series contains records related to the regional oversight of procurement for goods and services needed for operational work. Activities include the review and audit of procurement activities. Procurement audits and review evaluate: project preparation procedure with regard to procurement; internal regional procedures; country procurement practices; and other activities. Records also consist of correspondence and documents relating to the review of ongoing project procurement activities.

Records also consist of background correspondence and documents relating to the formulation of Country Procurement Assessment Reports (CPAR). Records related to procurement training activities are also included.

Management and oversight of unit functions

Records relating to the management and oversight of the Region's country and technical departments' functional responsibilities, work program, and policy development are included in this fonds. Topics may include: work program development; unit policy and procedures; agency structure and organization; management improvement studies; coordination and direction; departmental reviews; regional objectives and operational directives; and staffing. Records may include: work program agreements and monthly reports; research program materials; various task force records including some final reports; unit reviews; management team meeting records; management retreats; records related to the 1987 and 1991 reorganizations of the operations complex and subsequent reorganization of the Technical Departments; and general correspondence.

Series also includes records maintained in the Region's front office relating to the activities and management of the Region's field offices. Records may include: correspondence; reports; Terms of Reference; establishment agreements; audit reports; and contracts. Records may relate to administrative matters such as: renovation; security; inventory; capital budget; audits; and local staff.

Africa Regional Vice Presidency