If the World Bank was being created at the dawn of the 21st century, how would its basic model and operations differ from the mid-20th century institution which supports projects worldwide today?
Since the foundation of the World Bank, two significant development have affected infrastructure financing. The first is the development of distributed infrastructure (DI) – a library of technologies and techniques which provide the same class of services that are provided by centralized systems like the water and power grids, but without the massive centralized investments in physical plant. For example, dry toilets and solar panels can provide high quality services household by household without a grid. The second development is information and communications technology (ICT) which enables organizations to span continents with ease, and makes the details of project progress accessible from the other side of the world, given a satphone and a camera.
There is a natural fit between distributed infrastructure and ICT.
The Global Village Development Bank – 4 page, PDF format, basically a sketch of the deep structural fit between distributed infrastructure, ICT and crowdsourced financing.