About the content
An ambitious global development agenda was adopted at a UN Summit on September 25, 2015. The new global goals, called the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), will require trillions of dollars to accomplish over the next 15 years. This magnitude of financing will surpass the current capacities of governments and international donors. The World Bank Group and its partners recognize the need to leverage the “billions” in Official Development Assistance (ODA) to attract and mobilize “trillions” in investments of all kinds: public and private, national and global, in both capital and capacity.
This overview presents the main topics the course will cover:
Week 1: Introduction to Financing for Development
The first Module defines financing for development and its purpose, describes the main sources of finance and the principal actors involved in financing for development projects, discusses the trends in development finance and outlines why a paradigm shift is needed to mobilize the necessary financing resources to achieve the SDGs. reach the global goals. The Module also touches upon the outgoing general framework for development , the MDGs of 2000-2015, and the successor SDGs covering the period 2016-2030 adopted in September.
Week 2: Public Finance
The second Module introduces and explains domestic and international public finance resources. It highlights issues such as improving domestic resource mobilization, increasing the efficiency of public expenditure measures such as reducing illicit financial flows, and better leveraging Official Development Assistance to enhance its ability to mobilize other sources of public and private finance , particularly for low-income and fragile economies. The Module also discusses the importance for countries to improve the investment climate for greater private investment and to foster development of domestic capital markets to facilitate the tapping of domestic savings for development uses.
Week 3: Private and Commercial Finance
The third Module focuses on sources of domestic and international private and commercial finance. It includes the substantial growth of foreign direct and portfolio investments and of domestic capital markets in select developing countries. It emphasizes the growth and potential of newer sources of private and commercial finance, such as philanthropic funds, sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, and private equity, to be “crowded in” by more targeted use of public resources. It highlights challenges and obstacles the private sector sees to greater mobilization of private sector funding, including needed incentives such as greater risk-sharing and a more hospitable regulatory environment. This Module spotlights infrastructure finance, as one of the most resource-intensive and pervasive development sectors across the developing world, discussing the needs and the current impediments to attracting the capital projected to be required to meet those needs.
Week 4: The Financing Role of the Multilateral Development Banks, and Wrap Up
The fourth Module provides an overview of the MDBs, explaining their business models that have allowed them to leverage their capital and equity to support a vastly greater portfolio of development projects worldwide. It also discusses innovative financing solutions used in recent years to mobilize and generate new financing flows and improve the efficient use of available funds. This Module also highlights the role of MDBs in financing global public goods (GPGs), with climate finance spotlighted as a prime example of innovative techniques and financing vehicles used to ramp up funding deployed in this critical and global area. This Module concludes with a wrap-up of the key learnings the course has attempted to convey.
Participants can participate in one of two tracks:
- General Awareness
- Development Specialist
Participants can move from the General Awareness to the Development Specialist Track at any time during the course.
Track 1 – General Awareness
- Target Audience
This Track is suitable for anyone with a general interest in and desire to increase understanding of development finance, in particular the need to scale up to meet the financing needs supporting achievement of the SDGs and development more generally.
To describe the fundamental concepts of development finance, the sources of funding, and the role of finance in supporting the new Sustainable Development Agenda and development generally. This includes, in particular, the increasing need for public resources to be used innovatively to mobilize and leverage the growing pools of private and commercial finance to meet the 17 SDGs.
Assignments focus multiple-choice questions on subjects that reinforce learning that should be derived from watching the required video talks and doing the core readings. A reflective assignment (500 words) is designed to encourage active learning by requiring participants to select a topic of importance to them and to write an opinion piece that is then peer-reviewed and posted for review and discussion by other participants.
Track 2 – Development Specialist
- Target Audience
This Track is suitable for anyone who works in the development field or considers development a special area of interest. That would include: official development partners (including officials of the MDBs, IMF, UN and its agencies, donor and client government ministries of finance, foreign affairs and development, and central banks), the private sector, foundations, civil society organizations, and academics, students and other experts concentrating on development issues. It is designed to delve more deeply into the Module subjects, as well as to allow participants to create networks of common interest with counterparts from around the world.
To describe the fundamental concepts of development finance, the sources of funding, and the role of finance in supporting the Sustainable Development Agenda and development generally. This includes, in particular, the increasing need for public resources to be used innovatively to mobilize and leverage the growing pools of private and commercial finance to meet the global goals.
Assignments focus multiple-choice questions on subjects that reinforce learning that should be derived from watching the required video talks and doing the core readings. A Digital Artifact assignment relevant to their context or work, either (i) describing a situation or issue of importance, or (ii) designing a financing solution or plan, using multimedia (anything but text), is meant to deepen the discussion and collective learning. The digital artifact will be peer-reviewed and posted for discussion by other participants. Participants will be encouraged to translate complicated concepts into simple or actionable ideas, in a style that could be understood by laypeople in their community.
Communicate and share resources via the course hash tag on Twitter #Fin4DevMOOC. Other hash tags you may want to monitor are #Fin4Dev, #SDGs, #post2015, #developmentfinance.
Related Twitter accounts to follow and/or monitor are: @SDgoals, @SustDev, @devfinancenews
- Demet Cabbar
- Julius Gwyer
- Susan McAdams
- Marco Scuriatti
- Scott White
Coursera is a digital company offering massive open online course founded by computer teachers Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller Stanford University, located in Mountain View, California.
Coursera works with top universities and organizations to make some of their courses available online, and offers courses in many subjects, including: physics, engineering, humanities, medicine, biology, social sciences, mathematics, business, computer science, digital marketing, data science, and other subjects.