Miscellaneous Knowledge Notes

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    Targeting in Ultra-Poor Settings: Evidence from Six Countries in Rural Sahel
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022-10-21) Schnitzer, Pascale ; Guardia, Anne Della ; Lake, Milli
    The main insights of this note are as follows: first, to significantly reduce poverty higher budgets for safety net interventions are needed, and expanding coverage is far more important than fine-tuning targeting methods. After geographical targeting, most PMT and CBT methods perform close to a random allocation of benefits when trying to identify food insecure households. While PMT consistently outperforms CBT in identifying households with the lowest consumption, differences are small when distances to the poverty line are considered. While non-beneficiaries experience significant indirect economic benefits from the program, there is mixed and limited evidence on social cohesion and fairness perceptions of targeting methods. Finally, costs are relatively minor as a share of total resources transferred. The policy note concludes with policy and research implications for contexts with high poverty rates, low inequality levels, and insufficient budgets.
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    Adapting Social Safety Net Operations to Insecurity in the Sahel
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-11) Grun, Rebekka ; Saidi, Mira ; Bisca, Paul M.
    Adaptive Social Protection programs are increasingly implemented in fragile and insecure contexts in the Sahel. This paper provides a framework, key principles, and a repertoire of options for adapting social safety net projects to unprecedented levels of insecurity. It fills an operational knowledge gap regarding project design, implementation, and supervision under insecurity as called for by the World Bank Group’s strategy for fragility, conflict and violence 2020-2025. Based on a mix of desk research and field insights, the authors map operational security risks and identify ingredients for an appropriate response in risk assessment, design, beneficiary targeting, and payment systems.