The World Bank Group Archivists’ Chronology provides a comprehensive timeline of key events in World Bank Group history. Since its inception in 1944, the World Bank expanded from a single institution to an associated group of coordinated development institutions. The Bank's mission evolved from a facilitator of post-war reconstruction and development to its present day mandate of worldwide poverty alleviation and shared prosperity. Whereas heavy infrastructure investment projects once dominated the Bank's portfolio, a broadened focus now includes projects targeting agriculture, health, education, and other aspects of the social sector.
Many of the items in the Chronology are "firsts", documenting the first occurrence of significant events, such as the first lending for each member country, the first meetings of consultative groups, the first lending in a particular sector, etc. The chronology also includes membership dates for all member countries in each institution within the World Bank Group as well as appointment and retirement announcements for prominent Bank staff.
The Chronology was initially conceived as a means of providing Archives’ staff with historical information to aid their work with the archival holdings and to provide them with historical context on the evolution of the World Bank Group. The product was maintained and added to by numerous archivists over many decades. Thus, it contains some inconsistencies in style and substance. Readers are encouraged to cross-reference any statements for accuracy.