Easing into an Era

Barber Conable aims to reshape priorities at the World Bank

It was a deceptively quiet and unassuming start to what looms as a vitally important--and perhaps highly controversial--new era. On his second day in office, Barber Conable, 63, the newly anointed president of the World Bank, strolled onto a dais in Washington last week and inaugurated his term with an apology. He did not know much about his new job, the former Republican Congressman from New York told waiting journalists, and he would therefore require a "period of learning." What Conable already knows, however, is that he will need all the acumen and skills acquired during his 20 years on Capitol...

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