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From protection to production: productive impacts of the Malawi Social Cash Transfer scheme

Author

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  • Katia Covarrubias
  • Benjamin Davis
  • Paul Winters

Abstract

The Malawi Social Cash Transfer (SCT) scheme is part of a wave of social protection programmes providing cash to poor households in order to reduce poverty and hunger and promote child education and health. This paper looks beyond the protective function of such programmes, analysing their productive impacts. Taking advantage of an experimental impact evaluation design, we find the SCT generates agricultural asset investments, reduces adult participation in low skilled labour, and limits child labour outside the home while increasing child involvement in household farm activities. The paper dispels the notion that cash support to ultra poor households in Malawi is charity or welfare, and provides evidence of its economic development impacts. Disclaimer: The views expressed in the Work are those of the Author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Suggested Citation

  • Katia Covarrubias & Benjamin Davis & Paul Winters, 2012. "From protection to production: productive impacts of the Malawi Social Cash Transfer scheme," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(1), pages 50-77, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevef:v:4:y:2012:i:1:p:50-77
    DOI: 10.1080/19439342.2011.641995
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2009. "Mostly Harmless Econometrics: An Empiricist's Companion," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 8769.
    2. Ariel Fiszbein & Norbert Schady & Francisco H.G. Ferreira & Margaret Grosh & Niall Keleher & Pedro Olinto & Emmanuel Skoufias, 2009. "Conditional Cash Transfers : Reducing Present and Future Poverty," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2597.
    3. Shahidur R. Khandker & Gayatri B. Koolwal & Hussain A. Samad, 2010. "Handbook on Impact Evaluation : Quantitative Methods and Practices," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2693.
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    Cited by:

    1. Alderman, Harold & Yemtsov, Ruslan, 2012. "Productive role of safety nets : background paper for the World Bank 2012-2022 social protection and labor strategy," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 67609, The World Bank.
    2. Sudhanshu Handa & Silvio Daidone & Amber Peterman & Benjamin Davis & Audrey Pereira & Tia Palermo & Jennifer Yablonski, 2017. "Myth-busting? Confronting Six Common Perceptions about Unconditional Cash Transfers as a Poverty Reduction Strategy in Africa," Papers inwopa899, Innocenti Working Papers.
    3. Silvio Daidone & Sudhanshu Handa & Benjamin Davis & Mike Park & Robert D. Osei & Isaac Osei-Akoto, 2015. "Social Networks and Risk Management in Ghana’s Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty Programme," Papers inwopa781, Innocenti Working Papers.
    4. Jacobus de Hoop & Furio C. Rosati, 2014. "Cash Transfers and Child Labor," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 29(2), pages 202-234.
    5. repec:eee:deveco:v:129:y:2017:i:c:p:14-28 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Kishore, Avinash & Joshi, Pramod K. & Pandey, Divya, 2015. "Droughts, Distress and a Conditional Cash Transfer Program to Mitigate the Impact of Droughtin Bihar, India," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 212009, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    7. repec:eee:cysrev:v:86:y:2018:i:c:p:246-255 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Dorward, Andrew, 0. "Conceptualising the Effects of Seasonal Financial Market Failures and Credit Rationing in Applied Rural Household Models," Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, vol. 51.
    9. Sudhanshu Handa & David Seidenfeld & Benjamin Davis & Gelson Tembo & Zambia Cash Transfer Evaluation Team, 2014. "Are Cash Transfers a Silver Bullet? Evidence from the Zambian Child Grant," Papers inwopa731, Innocenti Working Papers.
    10. Ambler, Kate & de Brauw, Alan & Godlonton, Susan, 2017. "Cash transfers and management advice for agriculture: Evidence from Senegal:," IFPRI discussion papers 1659, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    11. Barrientos Armando & Villa Juan Miguel, 2015. "Evaluating Antipoverty Transfer Programmes in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Better Policies? Better Politics?," Journal of Globalization and Development, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 147-179, June.
    12. repec:wbk:wbpubs:26490 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Barrientos, Armando & Byrne, Jasmina & Peña, Paola & Villa, Juan Miguel, 2014. "Social transfers and child protection in the South," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(P2), pages 105-112.
    14. Azer Efendiev & Pavel Sorokin, 2013. "Research in Social Organization as Factor Affecting Rural Economic Growth in Developing Society: Theoretical and Methodological Challenges," International Journal of Asian Social Science, Asian Economic and Social Society, vol. 3(10), pages 2236-2245, October.
    15. Solomon Asfaw & Silvio Daidone & Benjamin Davis & Josh Dewbre & Alessandro Romeo & Paul Winters & Katia Covarrubias & Habiba Djebbari, 2012. "Analytical Framework for Evaluating the Productive Impact of Cash Transfer Programmes on Household Behaviour ? Methodological Guidelines for the From Protection to Production Project," Working Papers 101, International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth.
    16. Luis Henrique Paiva & Fábio Veras Soares & Flavio Cireno & Iara Azevedo Vitelli Viana & Ana Clara Duran, 2016. "The effects of conditionality monitoring on educational outcomes: evidence from Brazil?s Bolsa Família programme," Working Papers 144, International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth.
    17. UNDP Regional Bureau for Africa, "undated". "The Dynamics of Income Inequality in a Dualistic Economy: Malawi over 1990-2011," UNDP Africa Policy Notes 2017-13, United Nations Development Programme, Regional Bureau for Africa.
    18. Cristina Cirillo & Giorgia Giovannetti, 2018. "Do Cash Transfers Trigger Investment? Evidence for Peru," Development Working Papers 433, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 29 Jan 2018.
    19. repec:bla:devpol:v:35:y:2017:i:5:p:601-619 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Jensen, Nathaniel & Barrett, Christopher B. & Mude, Andrew, 2014. "Index Insurance and Cash Transfers: A Comparative Analysis from Northern Kenya," MPRA Paper 61372, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    21. repec:eee:wdevel:v:99:y:2017:i:c:p:299-319 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Furio C. Rosati, 2016. "Can cash transfers reduce child labor?," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 293-293, September.
    23. Armando Barrientos & Jasmina Byrne & Juan Miguel Villa & Paola Peña, 2013. "Social Transfers and Child Protection," Papers inwopa691, Innocenti Working Papers.
    24. repec:oup:wbrobs:v:32:y:2017:i:2:p:155-184. is not listed on IDEAS

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