Silva, Joana

Latin America and Caribbean
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Development Economics, Labor Economics, Social Protection, Human Development, International Trade
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Latin America and Caribbean
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Joana Silva is a Senior Economist at the Office of the Chief Economist for Latin America and the Caribbean. Since joining the World Bank in 2007 as a Young Professional, Joana published several books and articles on a broad set of issues related to economic development, including labor economics, education/skills, social safety nets, poverty, inequality, political economy of economic reforms, firm dynamics and international trade. Her research has been published in professional journals such as the Journal of International Economics, Economics Letters, Review of World Economics and IZA Journal of Labor Policy. Book titles authored or coauthored by Joana include “Sustaining Employment and Wage Gains in Brazil: a Skills and Jobs Agenda”,  “Inclusion and Resilience: The Way Forward for Social Safety Nets in the Middle East and North Africa” and “Striving for Better Jobs: The Challenge of Informality in the Middle East and North Africa”. While at the Bank she authored thematic Flagship Reports (e.g. as Task Team Leader for the 2013 MENA Development Report, the Brazil Skills & Jobs report), managed cross-sectorial lending projects and advisory activities (e.g. Task Team Leader for innovative labor and social protection projects), and contributed to a range of analytical studies on design and evaluation of social welfare systems, labor markets, political economy, international integration and investment climate. She holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Nottingham. Prior to joining the World Bank, she also worked for the Globalization and Economic Policy Research Center at the University of Nottingham and the Inter-American Development Bank. She is fluent in Portuguese, French, English, and Spanish.
Citations 51 Scopus

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    Inclusion and Resilience : The Way Forward for Social Safety Nets in the Middle East and North Africa, OVERVIEW
    (Washington, DC, 2012-09) Morgandi, Matteo ; Silva, Joana ; Levin, Victoria
    The report aims to meet two broad objectives: (a) enhance knowledge about the current state of existing social safety nets (SSNs) and assess their effectiveness in responding to new and emerging challenges to the poor and vulnerable in the region by bringing together new evidence, data, and country-specific analysis; and (b) open up and inform a debate on feasible policy options to make SSNs in the Middle East and North Africa more effective and innovative. First chapter, 'a framework for SSN reform,' describes and illustrates the reasons for the region's growing need for SSN reform and establishes the framework for renewed SSNs. It identifies key goals for SSNs (promoting social inclusion, livelihood, and resilience) and illustrates how these goals have been achieved in some parts of the region and elsewhere. Second chapter, 'key challenges that call for renewed SSNs,' analyzes the challenges facing the region's poor and vulnerable households, which SSNs could focus on as a priority. Two large groups are at higher-than-average poverty risk: children and those who live in rural or lagging areas. The chapter examines factors such as inequality of opportunities and lack of access to services that can perpetuate the lower human development outcomes among the poor in these groups. It also describes the challenge of vulnerability. Finally, it identifies particular social groups that are at a higher risk of exclusion from access to services and employment. Third chapter, 'the current state of SSNs in the Middle East and North Africa,' analyzes SSN spending and assesses different aspects of the SSN systems' performance. Fourth chapter, 'the political economy of SSN reforms in the Middle East and North Africa: what do citizens want?' presents new evidence on citizens' preferences concerning redistribution and SSN design, using newly collected data. It also discusses how political economy considerations could be taken into account in designing renewed SSNs in the region. Fifth chapter, 'the way forward: how to make safety nets in the Middle East and North Africa more effective and innovative,' proposes an agenda for reform and the path for moving forward, using global experience and the evidence presented in the preceding chapters.