The World Bank Accountability Mechanism Secretary is appointed by the Board of Executive Directors, reports to the Board and is independent of World Bank Management.
The Accountability Mechanism Secretary is selected on the basis of their ability to deal thoroughly and fairly with the matters brought before them; integrity and independence from Bank Management; and experience with international development and multilateral financial institutions.
To underscore their independence, the Accountability Mechanism Secretary serves a single term of five years and is prohibited from working for the World Bank Group in any capacity following the conclusion of their appointment.
The responsibilities of the Accountability Mechanism Secretary include (i) establishing and managing the Accountability Mechanism’s work program, budget and staffing, (ii) hiring Accountability Mechanism staff and consultants, (iii) overseeing all administrative matters and record keeping for the Accountability Mechanism, (iv) preparing and submitting annual itemized budgetary requirements for the Accountability Mechanism Secretariat, the Dispute Resolution Service and (working with the Chair of the Inspection Panel) the Inspection Panel for consideration by the Committee on Development Effectiveness and Budget Committee and approval by the Executive Directors, and (v) overseeing the functioning of the Dispute Resolution Service.
Orsolya Szekely was appointed Secretary of the World Bank Accountability Mechanism on May 3, 2021, and began work on July 20, 2021.
A lawyer and senior conflict-resolution professional, Ms. Szekely brings to the job in-depth knowledge of environmental and social issues, and wide-ranging experience in international development. A Hungarian national, Ms. Szekely has more than 20 years’ experience working with a broad range of multilateral organizations and the private sector. Immediately before joining the World Bank Accountability Mechanism, she served as the Senior Advisor and Coordinator in the Executive Office of the Secretary General, with responsibility for enhancing good governance, at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.
Ms. Szekely had previously worked as senior advisor with communities and high-level stakeholders in India, Myanmar, China, Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan, and on projects in Bangladesh and Nepal. She also worked on women’s empowerment and women’s participation in peace processes. Prior to these assignments, she was Head of Operations at the Council of Europe Office in Bosnia and Herzegovina and served as Special Representative of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe in Kosovo. In her managerial roles at the Council of Europe Office in Pristina, she was instrumental in establishing the accountability mechanisms in the United Nations and European Union Missions in Kosovo and facilitated the transition of the Ombudsperson Institution from internationally led to locally led. Prior to joining the Directorate of Political Affairs and Democracy of the Council of Europe, Ms. Szekely was a case lawyer at the European Court of Human Rights.
A recipient of the Women’s Leadership Scholarship from the University of Oxford, she completed the Saïd Business School Global Business Diploma Post-Graduate Program with a focus on multinational companies’ engagement in peace processes and sustainable development. Ms. Székely holds a master’s degree in law from the University of Pécs, Hungary. She is an Accredited Mediator, gaining her Certificate from the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution, UK. She also has a Certificate from the Harvard Law School, Program on Negotiation.