Social Safety Nets Primer

28 items available

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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.

Items in this collection

Now showing 1 - 8 of 8
  • Publication
    How to Make Public Works Work : A Review of the Experiences
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2009-09) del Ninno, Carlo; Milazzo, Annamaria
    Public work programs (PWPs) have been an important safety nets instrument used in diverse country circumstances at different points in time in both middle income and low income countries. Well-designed and implemented PWPs can help mitigating income shocks; the programs can also be used to reduce poverty. This paper reviews the experience with PWPs in several countries over the past 20 years to delineate use patterns and to determine the factors contributing to its use as a successful safety net program. This is done by reviewing cross-country variations in the design, implementation procedures and delivery models followed by an assessment of methods for monitoring and evaluation specific to public works.
  • Publication
    Safety Nets in Transition Economies
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) del Ninno, Carlo
    Transition economies are commonly understood to be countries that have moved or are moving from a primarily state-planned to a market-based economic system with private ownership of assets and market-supporting institutions. These countries include those of the former Soviet Union, those of Eastern and Central Europe closely allied with the Soviet Union and those in Asia and Africa recently undergoing market transformations of various degrees, such as China, Mongolia and Vietnam.
  • Publication
    Food-Based Safety Nets and Related Programs
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) Weigand, Christine
    Food-based safety net programs provide food, either directly, or through instruments (such as food stamps or coupons) that may be used to purchase food. More generally, these programs serve a variety of purposes and are designed to ensure livelihoods, to increase purchasing power, or to relieve deprivation and improve nutritional status, perhaps through the direct provision of food.
  • Publication
    Strengthening Public Safety Nets from the Bottom Up
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) Weigand, Christine
    Public safety nets in developing countries address the vulnerability of the poor and the near-poor to income disruption, but such formal programs do not operate in a vacuum. Private and informal mechanisms may already exist. The design of public interventions requires a clear understanding of what mechanisms are already available and how (and to what extent) individuals and households use them to cope with income fluctuations. This note surveys some of those design considerations.
  • Publication
    Assisting the Poor with Cash : Design and Implementation of Social Transfer Programs
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) Blomquist, John; Mackintosh, Fiona
    Cash transfers can be defined as the provision of assistance in the form of cash to the poor or those who face a probable risk, in the absence of the transfer, of falling into poverty. Cash transfers, broadly defined, can be given in the form of social assistance, insurance, near-cash tax benefits, and private transfers. This note focuses on government programs, recognizing that private transfers and public programs serve multiple objectives, of which social safety net protection is just one.
  • Publication
    Price and Tax Subsidies : Effectiveness and Challenges
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) Mackintosh, Fiona; del Ninno, Carlo
    Many governments use price and tax subsidization to meet social protection objectives. They endeavor to reduce the cost of living for their population-or for a subset of the population-by subsidizing the price of goods or services in lieu of, or in addition to, direct income transfers. While these subsidies may distort production incentives, subsidize the non-poor more than the poor, and limit consumer choice, there are reasons why a government may choose to use some forms of pricing policy rather than make income transfers to help the poor.
  • Publication
    Systemic Shocks and Social Protection : The Role and Effectiveness of Public Works Programs
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) Mackintosh, Fiona; Blomquist, John
    Public works programs have been an important safety net intervention in both developed and developing countries for many years. By providing temporary low-wage jobs to unskilled manual workers, income is transferred to poor households in a self-targeted manner while achieving useful projects such as road construction and maintenance, irrigation infrastructure, reforestation, and soil conservation.
  • Publication
    Public Attitudes Matter : Political Economy in the Design of Safety Nets Policies
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2003-01) Blomquist, John
    It has long been recognized that political economy influences the design, implementation and outcome of safety nets, as well as other social programs, but there is no consensus about how to account for such concerns in policy decisions. This note draws on international public opinion surveys and other research to highlight some of the implications for the design of safety net policies.