Canada's IMF Executive Director

By Momani, Bessma | Canadian Public Administration, June 2010 | Go to article overview

Canada's IMF Executive Director


Momani, Bessma, Canadian Public Administration


For many years, public administration literature has explored the degree of politicization of Canada's public service. Many have argued that the trend towards increased politicization of the public service is more evident today than ever before (Peters and Pierre 2004). Recent developments in Canadian politics have highlighted the public service's own "persona," which has brought into question the public service's responsibility and accountability (Savoie 2006). The question of how much power and influence on policymaking the public service exerts has also been debated in the literature.

This article adds empirical findings to this broader theoretical literature by examining the degree of autonomy of Canada's executive director at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), often a career public servant from the Department of Finance or Bank of Canada sent to Washington, D.C. to represent Canadian interests. Little is known about this position in the public service. How autonomous from Ottawa are Canadian IMF directors? How do Canadian executive board directors make their decisions at the IMF? What IMF agenda items have been proposed by Canada's executive directors, and, most importantly, did these agenda items originate from the Department of Finance and Bank of Canada or directly from the directors' office in Washington, D.C.? Is the appointment of the executive director politicized or has it been professionalized? This article also seeks to better understand the hiring and recruitment of executive directors and takes an important first step in providing a better understanding of this coveted yet relatively unknown position in the public service.

Personal interviews were conducted with seven of Canada's former executive directors and with three staff members from the Department of Finance, one from the Bank of Canada, and two from the IMF to understand the autonomy, authority and accountability of the position of director. Personal interviews with American, European, and non-western executive directors were also conducted to derive a better sense of their perceptions of some of the stances taken by Canadian directors. Interviews took place between 16 October 2007 and 29 May 2008. Persons interviewed will remain anonymous out of respect for their stated wishes. As well as the interviews, qualitative content analysis of Canada's reports on the IMF and Department of Finance memos and correspondence with the IMF (acquired through access-to-information legislation) were conducted to develop a more systematic and nuanced understanding of Canada's executive director position.

The role of executive directors at the IMF

Established in 1946, the IMF has an executive board that currently comprises twenty-four directors, who are, typically, delegated from the public service in the finance ministries and central banks of Fund member countries. These executive directors are charged with the Fund's day-to-day affairs and meet several times a week. To this end, the board of governors, which is the IMF's highest decision-making body, has delegated most of its powers to the executive board. The board of governors, which in turn meets annually, entrusts the executive directors with the responsibility of representing the interests of IMF member states. To ensure an effective and manageable board, the number of directors is limited by the Fund's articles of agreement. As new members have entered the IMF over the years, however, the number of executive directors has changed, starting with twelve executive directors at the IMF's inception. The current number of twenty-four was introduced in 1992.

The board's composition reflects a weighted voting formula based on member states' contribution to IMF capital (also referred to as subscription). Five appointed executive board seats are given to the largest five contributors to IMF capital. Since the early 1970s, these seats have been occupied by the United States, Japan, Germany, France, and the United Kingdom. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Canada's IMF Executive Director
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.