Agenda 2063 and Agenda 2030 – Comprehensive Social Protection in the SADC
18-19 October 2016
SASPEN (Southern African Social Protection Experts Network) and FES (Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung) will be hosting a two day international conference on “Comprehensive Social Protection in the SADC” in Johannesburg, on 18 and 19 October 2016. The conference will be organized around three themes:
Comprehensive Social Protection Systems
Comprehensive Social Policies
Comprehensive Vulnerability Analysis
Download the call for submissions here. Find details for conference registration, abstract submission, possible sponsorship of conference costs and a copy of the call for submissions below. ———- Please continue reading →
In a new paper in the Journal of Contemporary African Studies, SASPEN Advisory Council member Dr Marianne Ulriksen examines the relationship between mineral wealth and redistribution in Botswana, analyzing social transfers and taxation. The first 50 people to access the article will be able to download the paper for free and Dr Ulriksen decided to prioritize this opportunity for fellow SASPEN networkers. Please see the abstract and link below.
ABSTRACT: There are palpable cracks in the Botswana economic growth success story, most apparent in the evidence of persistent and extreme inequality. This article offers new insights into the Botswana puzzle by focusing on redistributive policies – taxation and transfers – as potential mechanisms to tackle poverty and inequality. The historical analysis explores how the minimal redistributive policies reflect the interests of the elites and how these actors justify their policy decisions with reference to the needs of the poor – an important electoral constituency; and it links policy developments to social and economic outcomes where no comprehensive social security system and negligible taxations means that only the well-to-do are in positions of income security and only the most vulnerable receive some relief. Diamond-rich Botswana avoids taxing its citizens. In terms of citizen engagement and ability to pursue social justice this may be a mistake.
For online access to the article, please click here
A new publication by SASPEN Advisory Council Member and Director of the Centre for Social Development in Africa (CSDA) of the University of Johannesburg, Prof Leila Patel, titled “Social Welfare and Social Development” discusses social welfare practice in global and regional context. It addresses issues of poverty, unemployment and populations at risk within South Africa and the role of the social welfare system in South Africa in tackling these issues. The book outlines the theory and practice of social development as the practice through which the South African government aims to address social challenges. The first edition was unique and groundbreaking in its explication of social development and is still valued for these insights. The second edition includes updated discussions, reviewing changes in the social landscape since 2005.
A recent “Lessons Learnt Paper” of the International Labour Organization (ILO) presents Field Research in four areas of informal economy in Zambia:
This Paper gives some strategic options to extend social protection to workers in the informal economy in Zambia. It also gives an overview about the results of four field research studies on domestic workers, small scale farmers, saw mill workers and construction workers who are often excluded from any form of social protection.
Click here to read more about the paper, and click here to download the publication (pdf, 2.8 Mb).
In a series of new working papers the Centre for Social Science Research (CSSR) of the University of Cape Town explores welfare reform and social policy in countries across the Global South, particularly Southern Africa and other African countries.
In a new working paper of the Centre for Social Science Research (CSSR) of the University of Cape Town, SASPEN Advisory Council Member Marianne S Ulriksen analyses the development of social protection policies in Mainland Tanzania between 2000 and 2005.
Tanzania has recently scaled up a piloted conditional cash transfer programme to target the extreme poor across the country. In addition, there has been moves to finalise a national social protection framework and the possibility of introducing an old age pension has been announced. This paper focuses on these three main social protection developments in Tanzania and looks into the role of different bureaucracies and their funding partners in shaping social protection policies. The Tanzanian case illustrates how external agencies influence the development of social protection strategies in low-income countries. Although policy ownership lies with domestic institutions, their ability to develop policies, implement these and document their success is largely depended on the support they get from external agencies. By funding pilot projects and supporting evidence-based publications and promotional events, external actors can play a determining role in promoting specific social protection policy designs. Without strong institutional ownership with the backing of resourceful partners, proposed policies are less likely to get sufficient political support.
The UN Development Group (UNDG) has published a Social Protection Issues Brief for Eastern and Southern Africa in collaboration with ILO, UNDP, UNICEF and WFP. The brief presents the main frameworks of Social Protection, addresses common challenges and describes a dozen case studies of African best practices (including Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania, Zambia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda).
The brief also features SASPEN as best practice (see p. 34).
In Eastern and Southern Africa, nearly half of the population lives on less than US$1.25 a day, making social protection a vital safeguard against poverty and deprivation. Over the last several years, the development agencies of the United Nations have joined forces to increase access to social protection in many of these countries, scaling up modest efforts and inaugurating new ones where they did not exist.
Whether through through joint teams or planning exercises, common office space or shared financial resources, the UN system has come closer together to deliver techncial assistance to governments and other constituents in the region and make social protection coverage a reality for more and more people.
This new publication from the collaborating agencies of the UN Social Protection Floor Initiative (SPF-I) details what is being done to create and improve social protection instutitions, policies and administrative capacities in the region, while jointly implementing the social protection components of the Sustainable Development Goals and 2030 Development Agenda. It also outlines several of the many new and innovative ways in which the UN is increasingly “delivering as one” in the area of social protection.
Following the South-South-Learning process the UNDP Rio+10 Centre organized in 2015 (see here and here) between the AU and Brazil, it has now published a comprehensive reader “Social Protection for Sustainable Development. Dialogues between Africa and Brazil” covering 10 chapters on social protection and sustainable development, economic emergence, social development, poverty reduction, income redistribution, food and nutrition security, nature and environment, building comprehensive systems and coordination of interventions.
The following flagship report focusing on Social Protection for Sustainable Development (SP4SD) serves as a companion policy analysis for national and global advocacy on inclusive, equitable and sustainable development. It looks at the role that social protection can play in this effort, which can be instrumental, coordinating, enabling and resilience-building. The report highlights the impressive gains in human development and poverty eradication achieved through the world renowned Brazilian social protection scheme and explores the conceptual and practical mechanics of its functioning to provide insights for the design and adoption of social protection schemes in Africa and beyond.
In a recent Daily Maverick” op-ed, Nkateko Chauke, Coordinator of the SADC-BIG-Campaign explores the connection between Social Protection which can reduce inequality and combat poverty, and overall African unity. Social cash transfers in Malawi, Namibia and South Africa demonstrate how people may escape poverty and scale-up their livelihood.
The SADC BIG Coalition (Basic Income Grant) shares a common vision to eradicate poverty and reduce inequality in SADC and promote the rollout of social protection in the region in accordance with the SADC Social Charter. This will enable the continent’s poorest households to better meet their basic needs through providing everyone with a minimum level of income, thus affirming and supporting the inherent dignity for all.
The government of (the semi-autonomous part of Tanzania) Zanzibar has introduced a Universal Social Pension (USP). Every senior persons of the age of 70 years or above is now entitled to the monthly pension of 20,000 Tanzanian Shilling, which is approximately about 9 US$.
Many had been waiting for the implementation after the government’s idea which was proposed in 2014 after some research was conducted, before local experts supported by the HelpAge International, and International Labour Organization (ILO), approved the initiative. The programme kicked-off last Friday with 21,750 elderly at the age of 70 years old or above, listed as eligible for the 20,000/= monthly pension each.
Read more about this first universal pension scheme in Africa at all here. BBC covered the pioneering decision here.
On June 2, the East African Legislative Assembly in Arusha (EALA), Tanzania, passed a bill dealing with the rights of person’s with disabilities (PWDs). It is a major step in the direction of full protection of PWDs and to improve the standart of living.
The purpose of this Bill is to:
to take appropriate and effective measures including policy, legislative, administrative and budgetary steps to ensure and protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities;
to recognize that disability is not inability and providing special safety nets for PWDs;
to ensure and improve access to rehabilitation, education, training and community sports;
to guide, coordinate and harmonize interventions for People with Disabilities by Stakeholders.
Labour legislation is one of the biggest issues around the world. In order to tackle its challenges in Zambia, MD INK invites stakeholders who are working labour standards and laws to a conference on the 29th and 30th of June 2016.
While the employer has a fundamental right to run his business, his right has to be adjusted with the employee’s right to social justice. The former pertains to the realm of fundamental rights in our Constitution, the latter to the realm of the Directive Principles. The Ultimate aim is to have peace in industry so that production may increase and the national economy may grow.
In order to protect the elderly in Namibia and ensure their financial well-being in retirement, especially those who worked in informal employment, the Namibian government mandated the Social Security Commission (SCC) through the Social Security Act (SSA) to establish a National Pension Fund (NPF) which covers all fromer employees (find a more comprehensive description here (pdf, 900 KB)).
The NPF is necessary to alleviate poverty, promote inclusivity and reduce inequality. In addition, the SSA also provides for the establishment of a National Medical Benefit Fund (NMBF) to provide essential medical benefits to Namibian workers.
The NPF is a part of the Harambee Prosperity Plan (pdf, 1.4 MB) which is the current action plan of the Namibian government in order to combat poverty and gain social security.
The HARAMBEE PROSPERITY PLAN (HPP) is constructed around the Namibian narrative. It acknowledges that we are not starting afresh, but that we must continue with the construct of an inclusive Namibian House, built on a solid foundation of peace and stability. We are unifed by our national identity and stand united in Cause, to usher Namibia into the epoch of Prosperity
The FAO Social Protection Team (SOCPRO) is looking for a “Social Policy And Programming Specialist” in order to assist the the FAO’s efforts to strengthening the coherence between agriculture and social protection in Lesotho.
The task for the specialist will be:
Providing technical support to the National Social Protection Strategy (NSPS) and its related programmes and programmes/policies in the agricultural sector, including the National Food Security Policy.
Assisting in the design, operationalization and monitoring of the emergency response to El Nino drought with national upscale of complementary agricultural and social protection interventions.
The deadline for the application is the 10th of June. Find more information if you click here.
The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) in India implements a rights-based approach to provide social protection and employment. The new approach is part of the public social protection scheme created to cover and provide employments and social security especially for those people who work in rural settings.
MGNREGA combines rights-based entitlements with demand-driven employment and citizen-centred planning and monitoring in its design. With regards to the central principles of R202, the innovative policy framework of MGNREGA pings nearly all of them: universality of protection, entitlement to benefits prescribed by national law, inclusion of informal economy workers, and respect for the rights and dignity of people covered by the scheme. Yet, despite the inclusion of these principles in formulating policy, the implementation process demonstrates the many challenges of realizing a rights-based approach.
A virtual meeting on the 9th of June at 3pm (UTC +0) deals with gender aspects of Social Protection; organized by IPC-IG as part of the South-South experience exchange.
The aim is for social protection policy makers from Africa and Brazil to exchange experiences, best practices, challenges and recommendations on the gender aspects of social protection. The meeting will be conducted in English.
A new policy brief (pdf, 176 KB) “Scaling up cash transfer programmes: Good practices and lessons learned from Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia” published by IPC-IG underlines the importance of monitoring and evaluating cash transfer programmes.
Social cash transfer programmes are important and promising initiatives in the promotion of sustainable development and inclusive growth in the developing world. However, many of these programmes are operating at a small scale, reaching only a limited number of beneficiaries. Strategies to expand, adapt and sustain successful pilot or small-scale programmes are thus necessary in the continuous process of poverty alleviation and development. This policy research brief provides an overview of the literature relating to the scale-up of cash transfer programmes and an examination of good practices and lessons learned from the process in three African countries: Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia.
The research paper is also available in French if you click here and in Portuguese if you click here. Read the english version here (pdf, 176 KB).
On May 12, 2016, SASPEN, the Platform for Social Protection Zambia (PSP), and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Zambia (FES) hosted the
the third 2016 Lusaka Social Protection Colloquium themed “Social Protection for Informal Workers”
The Colloquium was officially opened by Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Security, Honourable Alfreda Kansembe, MP.
The Colloquium included presentations by Prof Frances Lund, Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO), Mr Patrick Chabwe, Actuarial Liability Manager National Pensions Scheme Authority (NAPSA), Ms Marielle Phe Goursat, International Labour Organization (ILO) Lusaka,
and was facilitated by Mr Lameck Kashiwa, General Secretary of the Alliance for Zambia Informal Economy Associations.
Prof Frances Lund, Special Advisor and former Director for Social Protection, Women in Informal Employment: Globalising and Organising (WIEGO) provided the keynote presentation for this evening in which she elaborated the gender dimensions of informal work and social protection, presented the intricacies of providing social protection for informal employment, best practices and lessons from other countries as well as further linkages particularly in the health sector. Download her presentation here (pdf, 518 KB).
Mr Patrick Chabwe, Actuarial Liability Manager of the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA) introduced into the NAPSA strategy to extend social security to the informal economy. Download his presentation here (pdf, 465 KB).
Ms Marielle Phe Goursat of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Lusaka presented “Lessons from Research with Zambian Domestic Workers, Small Scale Farmers ans Construction Workers”. Download her presentation here (pdf, 488 KB).
General Secretary Mr Lameck Kashiwa moderated the evening and facilitated the discussions.
A YouTube podcast of the keynote presentation can be watched below. If you’d like to go immediately to the keynote presentation, please see jump to time index 19:35.
A new IPC-IG working “Public policies for rural development and combating poverty in rural areas” analyzes 11 major policies Brazil implemented concerning rural development.
Findings suggest that, although the productivity and sustainability of the most vulnerable smallholder farmers have not been substantially improved despite the many national policies in place, this should be attributed to a bias in rural development policies towards farmers who are already more established, and not at all to any intrinsically unsustainable aspect, or lack of potential, of smallholder and family farming.
To download the paper click here (English, pdf, 3.6 MB) or here (Portuguese, pdf, 183 KB). For background information click here (pdf, 180 KB).
A new publication “Social Protection in Africa: inventory of non-contributory programmes” by the International Policy Centre of inclusive Growth (IPC-IG)
aims at providing a broad overview of the existing non-contributory social protection programmes in Africa, supporting a better general understanding of interventions in the region and their main design choices and features.
It maps and profiles 127 programmes from 39 African countries, organised in a user-friendly way, allowing for easy access to each programme and the corresponding references through hyperlinks.
The report stems from the project “Brazil & Africa: fighting the poverty and empowering women via South-South Cooperation“, supported by DFID and in cooperation with UNICEF, IPC-IG and socialprotection.org.
To download the whole publication click here (pdf, 2 MB).
The Social Progress Index offers a rich framework for measuring the multiple dimensions of social progress, benchmarking success, and catalyzing greater human wellbeing. The 2015 version of the Social Progress Index has improved upon the 2014 version through generous feedback from many observers and covers an expanded number of countries with 52 indicators.
In June 2015 SASPEN together with PSP Zambia and FES hosted an international expert workshop dealing with social indices in the SADC context.
Read more here and download the entire Social Progress Index here (pdf, 4,5 MB).
“Family for every Child” in conjunction with IDS, CSP and CINDI has published a research report regarding linkages of Child Support Grant (CSG) and Foster Child Grant (FCG) and children’s care in South Africa. Key findings of the report include the positive role the grants play in improving child well-being and care, but also caution that in case of lacking human resources (social workers, programme staff) cash provision may have a negative impact. ———- Please continue reading →
The FAO Social Protection Team (SOCPRO) is seeking for two new consultants with the description : Social Protection Policy and Programme Specialist and Social Protection Capacity Development Consultant. Deadline May 27. ———- Please continue reading →
1. The need for and purpose of linking humanitarian Cash Transfer Programmes (CTPs) with social protection;
2. Where is the convergence and how can this be used for humanitarian CTPs;
3. What are the challenges and opportunities;
4. Some examples of how humanitarian CTPs have been linked with social protection in different contexts.
If you wish to attend the webinar please register here.
The FAO’s ESP is looking for a Social Protection Consultant – Extending coverage of social protection to rural areas – who should work home-based with missions to FAO Head Quater (Rome) and selected countries.
FAO and ILO are working together to promote and support the effective reach and coverage of social protection to rural populations. FAO’s work on social protection supports efforts to ensure coverage of social protection for all, including those whose livelihoods depend on natural resources, such as agriculture, livestock, fisheries or forestry 4. ILO’s approach pays particular emphasis on the extension of coverage to rural populations and to workers in the informal economy, and to facilitating their transition to the formal economy, based on Recommendations No. 202 and 204.
For more details please read the attached Terms of References which you can download here. The application deadline is 23 May 2016.
The recent “Leaving no one behind” project of the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) has published three working papers about including hard-to-reach population groups in social protection, namely Informal, Migrant and marginalized Women workers (all of which were also subject of previous SASPEN conferences).
In the paper ‘Extending social insurance to informal workers: a gender analysis’ Rebecca Holmes and Lucy Scott analyse
Informal workers face high levels of risks yet the majority are not covered by social insurance. Meanwhile, women informal workers face specific and heightened risks, yet more women than men are excluded from insurance schemes. Increasingly a number of countries are extending social insurance to informal workers, but, with only some exceptions, most policies remain gender-blind or gender-neutral.
In the paper ‘Internal migrants and social protection: a review of eligibility and take-up’ Emma Hopkins, Francesca Bastagli, and Jessica Hagen-Zanker analyse
Reasons for non-participation include complex and costly registration requirements, portability constraints and limited enforcement of official policy rules. Such features interact with additional factors such as sector and nature of employment, which are linked to whether a migrant has a contract. Other factors that affect migrants’ participation in social protection include limited knowledge and awareness of programmes and language barriers.
In the paper ‘Informality, women and social protection: identifying barriers to provide effective coverage’ Martina Ulrichs analyses
Designing more flexible social protection schemes that adjust to the particular needs of women in informal work requires a careful assessment of the obstacles they face in accessing social protection.
To read the full papers click the links below or see the project page here.
Extending social insurance to informal workers: a gender analysis (overview | pdf)
Internal migrants and social protection: a review of eligibility and take-up (overview | pdf)
Informality, women and social protection: identifying barriers to provide effective coverage (overview | pdf)
UNICEF Innocenti and the Know Violence in Childhood Initiative are hosting a round table in Florence, Italy to explore the linkages between social protection and the prevention of violence against children.
The round table will gather 25 experts from around the globe for two days to discuss new research linking social protection to childhood violence outcomes, including young child and adolescent sexual, physical and emotional violence. Some key questions to be discussed include:
What is the potential for social protection to affect childhood violence?
What rigorous evidence exists on the impact of social protection on childhood violence?
Where have the range of social protection programmes actively tried to address childhood violence, and what modifications or strategies have been pursued?
What are some of the key research questions and gaps looking forward?
Uber is transforming taxi markets and rapidly growing in countries like South Africa. Often hailed as a new way to increase flexibility and convenience, Uber has also long been criticized for undermining regulatory and social protections systems and even been challenged in court in countries with strongly regulated taxi markets. Previously Uber was a point of discussion on the SASPEN opinion blog SASPEN INSIGHTS. Now the Development Pathways Blog has posted an analysis “How Uber challenges social protection systems”. Blog author Rasmus concludes,
If this development towards a more informal labour market and more precarious employment continues, it will require radical reforms to the current social protection systems in developed countries. Just as in developing countries today, contributory social security systems, which are designed for a labour market where most are either in full time employment or unemployed, are not well suited to the emerging labour market. What is needed, instead, is an expansion of tax-financed social security programmes, where entitlements do not depend on being in full-time employment.
The FAO Social Protection Team (SOCPRO) Rome is looking for an Economist.
We are seeking an Economist to deepen and push forward the agenda on the linkages between agricultural and social protection interventions. The Economist will join a team of economists, anthropologists and policy specialists and will lead quantitative analytical work, from the design of studies (drafting concept notes and proposing methodologies) to empirical application (coordinating work of consultants, implementing the analyses, drafting reports/papers, etc.) to presenting findings and using these to provide programming and policy advice.
For more details please read the attached Terms of References which you can download here. The application deadline is 6th of May.
The World Bank Africa Poverty Report 2016 “Poverty in Rising Africa”, shows a decline of poverty rates but an increase of extreme poverty in absolute numbers in Africa.
Poverty across the continent may be lower than what current estimates suggest, though the number of people living in extreme poverty has grown substantially since 1990, according to the latest World Bank Africa poverty report.
According to the Data from the World Bank the share of people in Africa dropped from 56 Percent in 1990 to 43 Percent in 2012. However, due to the population growth there are more people living in poverty than back in the 90s.
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities, Ms Catalina Davandas-Aguilar, keynote speaker at the recent SASPEN Lusaka Social Protection Colloquium, issued an end of mission statement upon conclusion of her mission to Zambia, 18th to 28 of April 2016. She points to successes being made in the country, and underlines main challenges.
I commend the efforts undertaken by Zambia to make its social protection framework inclusive of persons with disabilities. In addition to the adoption of a National Social Protection Policy in 2014, which considers disability as one of its pillars, several social protection programmes take into consideration the needs of persons with disabilities in their implementation. These include the Social Cash Transfer programme, the Public Welfare Assistance Scheme and the Food Security Pack Programme. The Government should continue to promote the mainstreaming of disability issues in all its social programmes, including the Social Protection Fund, the Women Empowerment Fund, the Youth Empowerment Fund and the Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund. The Government should also ensure that funds are available for the adequate implementation of its disability-specific funds and programmes. – See more at: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=19890&LangID=E#sthash.iC0Y6qlS.dpuf