World Bank to cut sector directors in staff realignment

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim. The international finance institution's will post job advertisements for its new "global practices" head positions this week. Photo by: World Bank / CC BY-NC-ND

The World Bank posted job advertisements this week for a number of high-level positions to head the new “global practices” areas of technical expertise.

The 18 new positions will replace the 45 sector directors that currently oversee the bank’s technical staff, said sources at the bank who did not wish to be identified discussing internal personnel matters. Sector directors, senior executives who report to the vice presidents, were notified that their jobs would become “redundant” on July 1 of next year, noted the sources.

According to the job postings on the World Bank’s website, the new positions will have the title of “senior director” and report to the two global practices vice presidents appointed in October, Keith Hansen and Nena Stoiljkovic.

By eliminating the sector director positions and having the new senior directors report directly to the global practices vice presidents, the new model appears to eliminate a significant element of the current management “matrix,” which had overlapping regional and sectoral reporting structures.

The aim of the global practices system is to enable the bank to better transfer knowledge and practices throughout the bank and to deliver the best solutions to its clients. The senior directors will be responsible for ensuring that “the practice is at the forefront of the development debate and contributes to the global dialogue in the area of expertise.”

All of the new positions are based at the bank’s headquarters in Washington D.C., except for the senior director for fragility, conflict and violence, which will be based in Nairobi, Kenya.

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About the author

  • Paul Stephens

    Paul Stephens is a former Devex staff writer based in Washington, D.C. As a multimedia journalist, editor and producer, Paul has contributed to the Los Angeles Times, Washington Monthly, CBS Evening News, GlobalPost, and the United Nations magazine, among other outlets. He's won a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting for a 5-month, in-depth reporting project in Yemen after two stints in Georgia: one as a Peace Corps volunteer and another as a communications coordinator for the U.S. Agency for International Development.