Knowledge exchange is broadly defined as the just-in-time sharing of information and experiences among development practitioners and leaders. It can be achieved through a variety of means, including: debates on policy reform, topic-specific field visits between developing countries, or dialogues among various development stakeholders as a way of building consensus and coalitions for reform.
As part of the World Bank’s Knowledge Strategy, the World Bank Institute (WBI) is developing South-South Knowledge Exchange (SSKE) as a line of service. To do so, WBI has created a dedicated unit that focuses on South-to-South practitioner exchanges and plays a partnership and outreach role in raising the prominence of SSKE through the ‘Aid Effectiveness’ and G20 processes. This unit is developing a series of operational support services, including the tools and instruments needed to play a more effective global connector role.
With a focus on South-to-South practitioner exchanges, WBI is responding to clients’ demand for more support for knowledge exchanges with the following approaches:
- Brokering: matching of World Bank clients for peer-to-peer knowledge sharing to address pressing development needs.
- Financing: developing financing instruments, such as the South-South Facility. The Facility is a demand-driven multi-donor trust fund that finances South-South experience exchanges.
- Design: offering the “know-how” on ways in which knowledge exchanges can be designed so that they have lasting results. This is now featured in the “The Art of Knowledge Exchange”(PDF 2130 KB)—a step-by-step guide based on the Capacity Development Results Framework (CDRF) (PDF 1.54 MB) to design effective knowledge exchange activities.
- Implementation: supporting countries to develop their capacity to implement and share knowledge and also by using the Global Development Learning Network (GDLN) a partnership of 120 learning institutions that use ICT to support knowledge exchanges on development topics.
- Results: documenting results stories in a knowledge portal, a central repository and "go-to" place for practitioners looking for information and tools to support effective South-South knowledge exchanges.