social protection

The Economist on the global spread of cash transfers and Jokowi’s flying start in Indonesia

Duncan Green - January 13, 2015

Some fascinating coverage of the new Indonesian president and cash transfers in the Economist this week. First up, Indonesia: ‘Having trimmed petrol subsidies in November, Indonesia’s president, Joko Widodo, who is universally known as Jokowi, scrapped them entirely from January 1st. Small subsidies (1,000 rupiah, or eight cents, per litre) will remain in place for diesel, used for public transport and by the country’s millions …

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How is India’s iconic NREGA social protection scheme doing? Interesting research from Tamil Nadu.

Duncan Green - February 27, 2014

Some social programmes act as honey pots for busy bee researchers. A few years ago Brazil’s Bolsa Familia was the subject of choice, but it seems to have been overtaken by India’s Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) which has researchers all over it. A Global Insights paper from the University of Sussex has some great insights into the programme, based on a …

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Now that’s what I call social protection: the Chile Solidario Programme

admin - August 27, 2013

Another one of the fascinating case studies dug up by Sophie King for my recent UN paper on ‘The Role of the State in Empowering Poor and Excluded Groups and Individuals’. This one looks at how Chile manages its integrated social protection programme and is based on a paper by the excellent Stephanie Barrientos. Reading it really brings home the rapid erosion of any real …

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Doing a big Alaska: the case for a global social protection fund

admin - March 14, 2013

Olivier de Schutter, the UN’s special rapporteur on the right to food, is consistently interesting and provocative. This call to action is currently circulating on the interwebs (although the paper it’s based on came out last October): ‘If protecting human rights could be translated into a single political action, the creation of comprehensive social protection schemes would be it. Health care, unemployment insurance, food aid, …

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How poor people get through crises: some excellent 'rapid social anthropology' from IDS and the World Bank

admin - April 19, 2012

On Wednesday, I spoke at the launch of a new book, Living Through Crises: How the Food, Fuel and Financial Shocks Affect the Poor, by Rasmus Heltberg, Naomi Hossain and Anna Reva. It’s a joint World Bank and IDS publication, also available for free online. I think it could prove quite influential. The starting point for the book is that we live in a world …

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Where has the social protection debate got to? What's still missing?

admin - April 28, 2011

I always find debates around social protection strangely slippery. The language is fuzzy, the boundaries vague (what’s the difference between social protection and social policy? Depends who you ask). So a couple of weeks ago, I was secretly appalled when asked to give a 5 minute blogger’s input to a big IDS conference on ‘Social Protection for Social Justice’. Luckily I’m an early riser, so …

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Cash Transfers: what does the evidence say?

admin - April 12, 2011

DFID, the UK’s Department for International Development, produces some really excellent research (and in case you’re wondering, our research team doesn’t see any of DFID’s research dosh, so I’m not singing for my supper here). The latest example is a really useful ‘evidence paper’ on cash transfers, summarizing a literature that is expanding at a bewildering speed. Here are the highlights from the exec sum, …

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What does global aging mean for development?

admin - October 13, 2010

Following on last week’s post on obesity, here’s another trend that’s rarely talked about (at least in development circles, with the honourable exception of Helpage International) – global aging. c/o Phillip Longman in Foreign Policy magazine. “The global growth rate dropped from 2 percent in the mid-1960s to roughly half that today, with many countries no longer producing enough babies to avoid falling populations. Having …

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We love road blocks; flushing toilets and murder rates: random facts about Latin America

admin - September 16, 2010

The Economist has a big report on Latin America this week, to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the start of its struggle for independence (unfinished business, some would say). Here are some of the more striking statistical nuggets and other bits and pieces. The region has 15% of the world’s oil reserves, a large stock of its minerals, a quarter of its arable land …

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