Subject: Correction to press release
Dear Ms Anstey
Your press release of 2 April on Jim Wolfensohn's speech does not seem to be
quite accurate, in a way that seems rather important for understanding of the
International Development Goals by politicians and the public.
Your release says, "James Wolfensohn called on politicians to help launch a
global campaign to meet the international development goal of reducing the
proportion of people living in extreme poverty by half by 2015. " Never was
there a better time for such a campaign"."
However, on the web page for the text of his speech, he is quoted as saying:
".....none of the IDGs on health and education - namely, a two thirds decline
in infant and under-five mortality, a three-fourths decline in maternal
mortality, and universal primary education for all by 2015 - are likely to be
achieved at the global level without a more concerted powerful campaign.
Never was there a better time for such a campaign. "
So the campaign he would like includes these targets. In fact the targets
cannot sensibly be separated: the income target and the child mortality
target, especially, are statistically interdependent. The mathematics is
clear - if more of the poorest children survive, then we have to accept
that progress towards the income target will look slower.
The income target on its own is vulnerable to misunderstanding, since it is
not about raising incomes, but reducing the proportion of people at a low
level of income.
The International Development Targets were intended as a package, and Mr
Wolfensohn is clearly very aware of this. Politicians and the public may
not be, and need to understand that unless the targets are worked on as a
package, apparent progress towards the income target can be made with
policies that are not, as a whole, good for the poor.
Email from Head of Media Relations at the World Bank
Re: Correction to press release
03/04/01 20:16:21 GMT Daylight Time
I don't think there is a need for a correction. The goals are all outlined in
the speech - to which the reader is referred. You are right he also mentioned
health and education. But there obviously was not room in the headline of the
press release to mention all the goals. A headline saying he called for a
campaign to meet the IDGs would have confused people even more. Hence the fact
reason it was written as it was. It also pointed out that a number of the health
and education goals will be met at the country level, the issue is how to reach
them at the global level.
I apologizxe if there was any confusion.