Meeting the Social Assistance Demands of an Increasingly Vulnerable World

This paper assesses the effects on poverty and inequality of the alternative targeting approaches that Zambia’s Social Cash Transfer programme could take as its expansion continues during the period of the country’s Seventh National Development Plan (2017–21). It further assesses the domestic financing needs associated with alternative approaches. The Zambian government introduced support based on giving actual cash through social cash transfers aimed at reducing poverty and vulnerability in a sustainable and cost-effective way.

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Inequality reduction through social protection: Webinar in preparation of the UN Commission for Social Development

The social assistance and subjective well-being literature frequently shows “stigma” and “disempowerment” effects accompanying government transfers. These studies posit that the bureaucratic processes of government income assistance programs generate feelings of shame among recipients and adversely impacts their selfassessed well-being; or that being the “passive recipient” of state assistance undermines an individual’s sense of empowerment. We examine whether this theory holds under conditions of extreme instability and conflict.

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Although Africa’s economies are growing, not everyone is benefiting from the enhanced wealth. While average poverty rates in Sub-Saharan Africa have decreased substantially, roughly 40% of the population still live below the poverty line of USD 1.90 a day (World Bank, 2018). In addition, six of the top ten countries with the highest inequality rates in the world are African. Africa’s high inequality stems from the fact that its economic growth has not gone hand-in-hand with sufficient increases in productive employment opportunities for new labour market entrants.

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The combination of different working-age benefits, childcare costs and income taxation creates complexity, reduces work incentives and holds back employment. This paper compares Finland’s benefit system with two benefit reform scenarios: a uniform benefit for all (“basic income”) and a universal tapering rule (“universal credit”). The scenarios are modelled in the OECD TaxBen model and the TUJA microsimulation model.

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This paper focuses on measuring the extent to which publicly subsidized transfers in Latin America and the Caribbean redistribute income. The redistributive power of 56 transfers in eight countries is measured by their simulated impacts on poverty and inequality, and by their distributional characteristic. Our findings suggest that public transfers can be effective instruments to redistribute income to the poor. Yet frequently they have not managed to do so. The redistributive impacts from

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Despite significant development gains in recent decades, developing countries still face considerable challenges in regards to the fight against poverty and hunger. Redistributive cash transfer programmes have emerged as vital for the pursuit of poverty reduction and eradication; however, critics have expressed concerns that such social grants could lead to dependency among beneficiaries, dissuade them from seeking work, or reinforce traditional gender roles.

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This report is the result of collaboration between the Government of Namibia and the ILO. Drawing on the Social Protection Expenditure and Performance Review (SPER) and Social Budget methodologies, the objectives of the report are: 1) to improve the knowledge and information base on the coverage and performance of social protection in Namibia, focusing particularly on the SPF guarantees; and 2) to build the capacity of constituents in identifying reform priorities in the field of social protection.

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This report is part of a series of national case studies aimed at disseminating knowledge on the current status of social protection systems in Latin American and Caribbean countries, and at discussing their main challenges in terms of realizing of the economic and social rights of the population and achieving key development goals, such as combating poverty and hunger.

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