Re-post from GPM: Review of Catherine Weaver’s Hypocrisy Trap

So while I’m updating the “About” sections and building up this site, here is a Review of Hypocrisy Trap: The World Bank and the poverty of reform, Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press that I wrote for the Global Politics Magazine a while back. It’s a book centring on the fields of International Relations and IPE but what’s interesting is the content. If you read the review or read this summary, you’ll see the new perspective.

Weaver’s approach in her book draws upon a sociological approach as well as the IPE concept of principal-agent theory (see her joint article (Weaver and Leiteritz, 2005)) to construct her idea of organisational hypocrisy. Critics–economists, political scientists, social scientists–have long criticised the Bank, commonly for its neo-liberal approach towards development. However, no one has delved deep inside the Bank’s inner workings. Weaver does so and thus gives the explanation for its actions and decisions.

As I noted in my review, “in order for any improvement to the World Bank, it is not simply the initiation of change but the need to re-work the internal settings of [the Bank]” that must occur. In other words, NGOs, CSOs and people can protest as much as like about the Bank. However, genuine change willl only happen if the organisational culture is altered.

Short article–definitely more to come!


Weaver, C. and Leiteritz, R.J., 2005, “Our Poverty is a World Full of Dreams: Reforming the World Bank”, Global Governance, 11(3), pp.369-388


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