Social Safety Nets Primer

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This series is intended to provide a practical resource for those engaged in the design and implementation of safety net programs around the world. Readers will find information on good practices for a variety of types of interventions, country contexts, themes and target groups, as well as current thinking on the role of social safety nets in the broader development agenda.

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High Labour Intensive (HIMO) Public Works in Madagascar : Issues and Policy Options

2008-12, Milazzo, Anna Maria

High labor intensive (HIMO) public work programs have been very popular in recent years in Madagascar. They have been one of the most common safety net program used to address poverty and vulnerability. The objective of these programs has been to provide income support to the poor in critical times, e.g. after natural disasters, or to respond to seasonal shortfalls in employment during the agricultural slack period (soudure), and to improve much needed local infrastructures. The Government has recently increased its commitment to assisting poor households to prevent, mitigate and cope with the consequences of these shocks. The poverty reduction strategy paper, presented by the Government in 2003, calls for a national strategy for social protection to address risks and vulnerabilities as a central challenge to reduce poverty and improve human capital in Madagascar. To supplement effective implementation of policies in the area of social protection, the Government developed a National Risk Management and Social Protection Strategy (NRMSPS) in 2007.

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Demand-Side Subsidies for Housing

2003-01, del Ninno, Carlo

Several governments in developing countries have been using demand-side programs to increase access to housing services among the poor. From the perspective of a social safety net, the main justification for providing housing assistance is that adequate shelter is a basic need that governments have a responsibility to help to fulfill, especially during times of hardship. In transition countries, assisting the poor with their housing-related expenditures can mitigate the hardship caused by planned price increases. The introduction of housing assistance in such cases makes it possible to implement reforms such as price increases or deregulation.