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Leaving the Safety Net: An Analysis of Dropouts in an Urban Conditional Cash Transfer Program


  • González-Flores, Mario
  • Heracleous, Maria
  • Winters, Paul


In poverty reduction programs, a significant number of beneficiaries change program status. An analysis of Oportunidades’ data from urban Mexico shows that beneficiaries that drop out for behavioral and administrative reasons are those who are marginally eligible, improving targeting through minimizing errors of inclusion. Results also indicate that the very poorest recipients, particularly in large urban areas and less marginal communities, are more likely to drop out, increasing the errors of omission. Households deemed ineligible through a recertification process were those that had obtained basic durables or changed their demographic composition implying that Oportunidades’ retargeting is based on limited information.

Suggested Citation

  • González-Flores, Mario & Heracleous, Maria & Winters, Paul, 2012. "Leaving the Safety Net: An Analysis of Dropouts in an Urban Conditional Cash Transfer Program," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(12), pages 2505-2521.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:40:y:2012:i:12:p:2505-2521
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2012.05.020

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Avitabile,Ciro & Bobba,Matteo & Pariguana,Marco, 2015. "High school track choice and financial constraints : evidence from urban Mexico," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7427, The World Bank.
    2. Avitabile, Ciro & Bobba, Matteo & Pariguana, Marco, 2017. "High School Track Choice and Liquidity Constraints: Evidence from Urban Mexico," IZA Discussion Papers 10506, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Villa, Juan M. & Nino-Zarazua, Miguel, 2014. "Poverty dynamics and programme graduation from social protection: A transitional model for Mexico's Oportunidades programme," WIDER Working Paper Series 109, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    4. Janine Berg, 2015. "Income support for the unemployed and the poor," Chapters,in: Labour Markets, Institutions and Inequality, chapter 10, pages 263-286 Edward Elgar Publishing.


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