Skip to Main Navigation

A new approach to social assistance : Latin America's experience with conditional cash transfer programs (English)

Conditional cash transfers are a departure from more traditional approaches to social assistance, that represents an innovative, and increasingly popular channel for the delivery of social services. Conditional cash transfers provide money to poor families, contingent upon certain behavior, usually investments in human capital, such as sending children to school, or bringing them to health centers on a regular basis. They seek both to address traditional short-term income support objectives, as well as to promote the longer-term accumulation of human capital, by serving as a demand-side complement to the supply of health, and education services. Evaluation results from a first generation of programs reveal that this innovative design has been quite successful in addressing many of the criticisms of social assistance, such as poor poverty targeting, disincentive effects, and limited welfare impacts. There is clear evidence of success from programs in Brazil, Colombia, Mexico and Nicaragua in increasing enrollment rates, improving preventive health care and raising household consumption. Despite this promising evidence, many questions remain unanswered about conditional cash transfer programs, including the replicability of their success under different conditions, their role within a broader social protection system, and their long-term effectiveness in preventing the inter- generational transmission of poverty. One of the main challenges facing policymakers today is how to build off of the established success of conditional cash transfer programs, to tackle the more difficult issues of improving the quality of health, and education services, and providing a more holistic approach to both social protection, and chronic poverty.

Details

  • Author

    Rawlings,Laura B.

  • Document Date

    2004/08/01

  • Document Type

    Working Paper (Numbered Series)

  • Report Number

    30165

  • Volume No

    1

  • Total Volume(s)

    1

  • Country

    Latin America,

    Mexico,

    Nicaragua,

    Colombia,

    Brazil,

  • Region

    Latin America & Caribbean,

  • Disclosure Date

    2010/07/01

  • Doc Name

    A new approach to social assistance : Latin America's experience with conditional cash transfer programs

  • Keywords

    Poverty Reduction &Economic Management;conditional cash transfer program;out of pocket expenditures;Bono de Desarrollo Humano;social safety net strategy;primary school age population;monitoring and evaluation system;education and health;high school enrollment rate;safety net program design;provision of health care;short period of time;social assistance program;human capital accumulation;health and nutrition;Proxy Means Tests;human capital investment;human capital development;social protection system;measure of poverty;preventive health care;social insurance system;Social Safety Nets;errors of inclusion;reducing child labor;primary school enrollment;social assistance strategy;social insurance program;number of beneficiaries;families with child;quality of health;targeted social assistance;economies of scale;social security system;high risk activities;child labor force;social assistance policies;transfers in kind;per capita consumption;income generating activity;hygiene and nutrition;income generation program;public sector reform;poverty alleviation strategy;empowerment of woman;investment in school;income transfer program;safety net system;social protection program;general equilibrium analysis;social insurance benefit;public works program;long-term poverty reduction;median food expenditure;effective service delivery;development research group;targeted social program;long-term economic growth;safety net policy;Safety Nets Topic;commitment to poverty;subsidized health insurance;nutrition and education;regular school attendance;investments in education;program design element;issue of access;primary school-age child;lack of incentive;high opportunity cost;identification of beneficiary;local service provider;extreme poverty line;general tax revenues;poverty reduction program;safety net mechanism;provision of good;transfer of cash;education service;Education Services;poor household;program impact;welfare impact;evaluation result;administrative cost;cash grant;generational transmission of poverty;education grant;poverty targeting;accountability relationship;social experiment;income support;market failure;evaluation design;health clinic;nutrition monitoring;household level;household consumption;health clinics;annual budget;rural area;education component;economic crisis;secondary level;minimum level;attendance rate;experimental design;perverse incentives;political transition;selection criterion;consumption need;supply side;education supply;workfare program;positive externality;beneficiary family;targeting mechanism;social worker;immunization rate;children of ages;Health Service;institutional design;Labor Market;quality service;future earnings;school material;transfer size;needy individual;community characteristic;poverty effect;vulnerable population;school absence;coffee crisis;long-term sustainability;household expenditure;emergency situation;investment component;program administrator;international lending;coffee price;minimum pension;equity objective;present value;education subsidy;response mechanism;long-term viability;policy priority;program conditionality;political purpose;high enrollment;global development;dietary intake;housing subsidy;vulnerable group;psychosocial support;poor community;community social;transfer recipient;women's status;behavioral change;family dynamic;geographical targeting;child working;optimal balance;participation rate;job loss;adequate coverage;budgetary constraint;Public Services;education voucher;migrant worker;mobile populations;indigenous communities;indigenous community;financial efficiency;local beneficiary;young families;empirical evidence;sectoral studies;research observer;credible evidence;preventative health;natural disaster;financial infrastructure;community relation;administrative infrastructure;average consumption;administrative arrangement;monitoring compliance;timely payment;geographical area;consumption level;Mobile Health;administrative processes;child stunting;administrative agency

Downloads

COMPLETE REPORT

Official version of document (may contain signatures, etc)

  • TXT*
  • Total Downloads** :
  • Download Stats
  • *The text version is uncorrected OCR text and is included solely to benefit users with slow connectivity.

Citation

Rawlings,Laura B.

A new approach to social assistance : Latin America's experience with conditional cash transfer programs (English). Social Protection discussion paper series ; no. SP 0416 Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/875241468772499990/A-new-approach-to-social-assistance-Latin-Americas-experience-with-conditional-cash-transfer-programs