With World Bank’s current president Robert Zoellick announcing his resignation, President Barack Obama will have to fill a major slot this summer. The Washington, D.C.-based organization—which loans tens of billions of dollars a year to developing countries—has been a plum assignment for political insiders. Now, that there is an open vacancy, the question is: Who will be placed in the seat?
Past hopefuls have included New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Treasury Secretary and ex-Obama economic adviser Larry Summers, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Clinton has made it clear her plans to stay at the State Department, as her spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told Reuters, saying, “She has said this is not happening. Her view has not changed.” Meanwhile, Mayor Bloomberg has made no secret of his wish to fill the World Bank position, but he has said he would remain in city hall through the end of his term in 2013, effectively taking him out of consideration for the job.
Under Zoellick’s tenure, the World Bank provided $247 billion dollars in aid for infrastructure, agriculture, economic development, education, health and the environment. But with such a stellar reputation, will there be anyone up to the task for taking over such a lofty job? Who should be the next to lead the World Bank?