Policy highlights:

  • This report provides an overview of the state of 127 non-contributory social protection programmes (SPPs) in 39 African countries. It presents their objectives, design and implementation features, but does not discuss programme impact.
  • The most frequently implemented programme components are unconditional cash transfers (33%), cash-for-work programmes (15%) and conditional cash transfers and in-kind transfers (both 11%). Over 50% of mapped programmes combine multiple components. Cash-for work and training is a frequent combination.
  • In almost 60% of SPPs, recipients receive benefits in cash. Food is provided in 25% of the cases. Other frequently listed benefits are a variety of services, including healthcare and training.
  • Corresponding to project-size and GDP, most programmes (28%) cost between USD 1 and 5 million. Projects in Egypt, which has one of the highest GDPs in Africa, are particularly expensive, costing up to USD 1 billion. Expenditure is unknown for over 20% of all programmes listed.
  • Whether programme success and impact are monitored and/or evaluated is often unknown or unmentioned (40% of listed SPPs). In 40% of programmes that do mention monitoring/evaluation, external parties are involved in this process. Of this same group, 20% explicitly involve local partners in the monitoring process. In the Old Age Pension programme in Lesotho, for example, local chiefs are included in the evaluation.
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