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Access the Catalog

The Archives Catalog offers finding aids that describe our records which are the documentary evidence of all of the business activities of the Bank. The finding aids assist researchers when making a request for access to records which are organized into groupings called fonds. Browse the thematic lists below or click on the “Search Our Finding Aids” button. For further guidance, visit the Using Our Finding Aids page.

Thematic Lists of Fonds Descriptions

The World Bank

General Management and Administrative Units

The records in these fonds primarily relate to non-lending activities such as external liaison, operations policy, and resource mobilization. 

The World Bank

Regional Vice Presidencies

Regional Vice Presidencies are responsible for lending operations, including project identification and supervision, economic and sector work, and country relations.

The World Bank

Sector Departments

Sector departments were created as part of a Bank-wide reorganization in 1972. Responsibilities include sector policy development, operational support and review, and subject matter expertise. 

Consultative Groups

Includes records relating to consultative groups that the World Bank sponsors or for which it serves as the secretariat. Consultative groups consist of public, private and/or international organizations that coordinate and raise funds for technical assistance and research.

Sector Vice Presidencies and Networks

Sector Vice Presidencies were responsible for coordinating and guiding the work of sector departments, the units responsible for sector policy and best practice development, staff training, and other non-operational activities.

Personal Papers and Non-Bank Records

Personal papers and non-Bank records include records that have not been in the continuous custody of the World Bank since their creation.

Individual Staff Members

The individual staff member fonds contains records that were accumulated by individual staff from the various offices in which they served. Because the records cover the individual’s work in more than one office, the records cannot be assigned to a fonds for a single office.

Reference Collection on World Bank Group History

The Reference Collection contains copies of records from other repositories that relate to the history of the World Bank Group. 

Complete List of Fonds

The complete list of fonds consists of all of the descriptions in thematic groupings.


Other Ways to Find Archival Records

The World Bank

Projects and Operations

This searchable database of World Bank projects provides contextual information for each World Bank project as well as a folder list of archival records that relate to that project. Records that have been digitized are viewable here as well.

The World Bank

Photo Catalog

Access thousands of photos documenting the World Bank Group’s work in member countries, official signings, and other historic events and personalities relating to World Bank Group operations.

The World Bank

Documents and Reports

Search a curated collection of hundreds of thousands of publicly available reports and serialized publications of the World Bank Group authored since 1946.