Social protection Key Resources

Gender and social protection
Cash transfers
Social protection and migration

Gender and social protection

Gender and Social Policy in a Global Context: Uncovering the Gendered Structure of ‘The Social’ (2006), Shahra Razavi and Shireen Hassim (eds.), Houndsmills, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN: 9781403996305, 376 pp., website:

This book is invaluable for gaining an understanding of the gendered nature of state social protection mechanisms, from both an historical and regional perspective, outlining the legacy of access to social protection via paid employment and the ‘male breadwinner model’, to the impact of liberalisation policies that have weakened the link between paid work and entitlements to social protection and provisioning. The book underlines the importance of thinking beyond states and markets in social provisioning, including in the analysis the interactions between these and other social institutions, especially the family and community. Although there have been changes in the balance of work and care in many societies, this book shows that in many contexts these changes have re-inscribed rather than eroded gender inequalities. The chapters explore the link between the norms and assumptions on which social institutions are constituted in different countries, and the ways in which these have structured work burdens and access to entitlements. The first chapter of the book is available to download at no charge from the UNRISD website,$file/chapter1.pdf

Mainstreaming Gender in Social Protection for the Informal Economy (2008), Naila Kabeer, London: Commonwealth Secretariat, ISBN: 978-0-85092-840-2, 412 pp., website:

In this extremely valuable study, Naila Kabeer explores the gendered dimensions of risk, vulnerability and insecurity and, therefore, the need for a gender perspective in the design of social protection measures. Her emphasis is on the informal economy because that is where the majority of women, and indeed the poor, are to be found, while also being where official efforts for social protection are most limited. The author develops a framework of analysis which integrates gender, life course, and livelihoods perspectives in order to explore the interactions between gender inequality, household poverty and labour market forces that help to produce gender-differentiated experiences of risk and vulnerability for the working poor. She then examines and assesses examples of social protection measures / from child allowances to pensions / in order to illustrate the necessity for a gender-analytical approach and stresses the importance of an organised voice for vulnerable and marginalised workers. Finally, she pulls together the main lessons emerging from the discussion, and identifies gaps and exclusions in the social protection agenda.

Gender and Social Protection, Commonwealth Secretariat Discussion Paper Number 3, January 2009,, 12 pp.

For the authors of this clearly-written discussion paper, social protection is a policy approach that aims to integrate concerns about social security and poverty reduction into a unified framework. Drawing on the analysis in Naila Kabeer’s book, Mainstreaming Gender in Social Protection for the Informal Economy (see above), the paper sets out types of social protection instruments, or policy responses, to particular gender-related risks, and the gender-related impacts of such policy responses; identifies knowledge gaps and debates on gender and social protection; and outlines good practices in gender and social protection.

‘Social protection’ (2011), Guy Standing, in Deconstructing Development Discourse: Buzzwords and Fuzzwords, Andrea Cornwall and Deborah Eade (eds.), Bourton on Dunsmore: Practical Action Publishing, in association with Oxfam GB, pp. 53-98,

Arguing that the term ‘social protection’ has been widely used around the world, but is often confused with ‘social’ security’, Guy Standing lists, and discusses what are for him, the key terms in ‘the modern lexicon of social protection’. For anyone struggling to grasp just what constitutes ‘social protection’, this chapter is extremely helpful.

Transformative Social Protection, IDS in Focus issue 01, May (2006) Stephen Devereux and Rachel Sabates-Wheeler, 2 pp.

In this short paper, the authors argue that although the ‘safety net’ function – social protection for economic security – remains a crucial component, a neglected aspect of social protection has been equity and rights. For the authors, a broader approach to social protection would include four main elements: protective measures – which provide relief from deprivation; preventive measures – which seek to avert deprivation; promotive measures – which aim to enhance incomes and capabilities; and transformative measures – which seek to address vulnerabilities arising from social inequity and exclusion. Whilst the paper makes no mention of gender, it is clear that social protection with a transformative agenda is of relevance when it comes to promoting gender equality / previous social protection programmes having often ignored women, or reinforced traditional gender roles.

Gender Equality and the Extension of Social Protection, Extension of Social Security Paper no. 16 (2003), Rachel Sabates-Wheeler and Naila Kabeer, International Labour Organization,, 54 pp.

This paper takes as its starting point the overwhelming evidence that women occupy a disadvantaged status in relation to work opportunities when compared to men from equivalent social groups, and that they are also far more likely to be excluded from the sphere of social protection strategies.

It is thought that female exclusion from such strategies is due to three main factors: an increasing casualisation and feminisation of the labour force; life cycle events; and gender-neutral effects that are likely to more severely impact women. Attempts to extend social protection must first analyse the composition of the labour market within any one country and its relation to social protection. A variety of successful social protection programmes and experiences are evaluated with the aim of recommending ways to extend social protection, in particular to women of working age. Based on commonalities that the authors identify across successful social protection programmes, they recommend that future efforts to extend social protection initiatives should take these factors into account. Furthermore, due to lack of data and comprehensive research, impact evaluations on the range of social protection programmes for women need to be conducted. The detailed table of contents provided at the beginning of the paper is of great help in assisting the reader to work her way through this thorough survey of the subject.

Gender and Social Protection (2004), Cecilia Luttrell and Maxine Molyneux, DFID, 30 pp.

This paper discusses the gender implications of social protection policies, strategies and programmes, and the authors provide a helpful working definition of social protection as used in the paper (taken from Shepherd 2004); ‘all interventions from public, private and voluntary organisations and informal networks to support communities, households and individuals in their efforts to prevent, manage and overcome risks and vulnerabilities’ (p. 3). The paper shows that men and women are affected in very different ways by vulnerability and shocks, such as job loss or natural disasters, stressing that social protection interventions therefore need to be tailored accordingly, as women are often excluded. Poor women could benefit if existing services for those in formal employment were easier to access and if social insurance was extended to informal workers, the majority of whom are women. It also notes that women are often the providers of social protection at the household, extended family, and community levels, for example through their care for chronically ill relatives and HIV/AIDS orphans. A recommendation is that assistance should be provided to women in this role through the strengthening of informal household and community-level social protection mechanisms, but that this must avoid further burdening women with more responsibilities.

Rethinking Social Protection Using a Gender Lens, Working Paper 320, Oct. (2010), Rachel Holmes and Nicola Jones, Overseas Development Institute, resources/download/5099.pdf, 45 pp.

This paper synthesises findings from a multi-country research project on gender and social protection effectiveness. The project aimed to examine the extent to which existing social protection programming approaches are reinforcing women’s traditional roles and responsibilities, or harnessing the potential for social protection to contribute to a transformation of gender relations in economic and social spheres. It did this by assessing how far gender has been incorporated into the design and implementation of: cash transfers in Ghana and Peru; asset transfers in Bangladesh; public works in Ethiopia and India; and subsidised food and services in Indonesia, Mexico, and Viet Nam. The research used a mixed methods approach, including a review of secondary sources, key informant interviews, household surveys, focus group discussions and life histories from poor men, women and children across different stages of the lifecycle.

Gender, Politics and Social Protection: Why Social Protection is ‘Gender Blind’, Briefing Paper 62, October (2010), Nicola Jones and Rebecca Holmes, Overseas Development Institute,, 4 pp.

This briefing paper explores the political economy of social protection and its effects on gender relations. The authors argue that, after a previous focus on the technical with regard to discussion of social protection in developing countries, analysts are now turning their attention to the political economy challenges facing social protection strategies. The paper sets out the three ‘i’s of social protection: institutions (e.g. elections, political party systems, informal politics) and how they shape social protection choices; the interests of key actors, (e.g. political elites, bureaucratic agencies, donors, and civil society); and ideas held by elites and the public about poverty, the social contract between state and citizens, and the merits of different forms of state support. For the authors, social protection debates are deeply political, especially when viewed through a gender lens, and a political economy approach, which integrates gender into the institutions, interests, and ideas that shape social protection, is essential for gender equitable outcomes.

Social Protection Programming: The Need for a Gender Lens, Briefing Paper 63, October (2010), Rebecca Holmes and Nicola Jones, Overseas Development Institute,, 4 pp.

This briefing paper discusses multi-country primary research on the incorporation of gender issues into the design and the implementation of a range of social protection instruments. The key findings are that: the extent to which gender is integrated into social protection approaches has been uneven; harnessing the potential of social protection to transform gender relations requires strategic linkages with complementary programmes and the inclusion of men and boys; and social protection interventions must invest in gender-disaggregated data and analysis to make gender visible in programme design, implementation, and evaluation.

Putting the ‘Social’ Back into Social Protection: A Framework for Understanding the Linkages between Economic and Social Risks for Poverty Reduction, Background Note, August (2009) Rebecca Holmes and Nicola Jones, ODI,, 12 pp.

Drawing on examples from South Asia and East Africa, this Background Note discusses the importance of putting the ‘social’ back into social protection by taking both economic and social risks into account in order to enhance the effectiveness of social protection.

Gender and Social Protection, Eldis Online Key Issues Guide,

This online resource, dedicated to gender and social protection, has a variety of papers available to download, under the following headings: gender and social protection; conditional transfers; gender dimensions of policy; informal workers and social security; public work schemes for women; and unconditional transfers. However, at the time of this issue of Gender & Development going to press, none of the papers available were published any more recently than 2005.

‘Social protection in the changing world of work: experiences of informal women workers in India’ (2006), Mirai Chatterjee, in Rethinking Informalization: Poverty, Precarious Jobs and Social Protection, Neema Kudva and Lourdes Benerıa (eds.), Cornell University Open Access Repository, Informalization.pdf, 86 pp.

In this paper, presented at a 2002 conference, ‘Rethinking Informalization in Labor Markets’, at Cornell University, the author, a member of India’s Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), discusses initiatives undertaken by SEWA and other organisations and partnerships to provide social protection programmes for child-care, insurance, primary health care, and basic services for informal women workers, who constitute the vast majority of women working in India today. She highlights the problems of first identifying, and then organising, informal women workers who are typically engaged in more than one activity or trade, geographically dispersed, moving in and out of different economic activities, and therefore still ‘invisible’, but also identifies the many benefits which accrue from organising to provide social protection for those working in the informal economy.

Women Organizing for Social Protection: The Self Employed Women’s Association’s Integrated Insurance Scheme, India (2001), International Labour Office (ILO), , 86 pp.

The Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) is an association of Indian women working in the informal sector. Created in 1972, today it has more than 200,000 members. In 1991, SEWA launched a social protection system offering life insurance and health insurance. The document describes the context and the motivations at the origins of this social protection system, and presents its operations and its evolution, and undertakes a financial and institutional analysis of the scheme.

Extending Social Security to All. A Guide Through Challenges and Options (2010), ILO,, 140 pp.

The authors of this guide argue that the evidence they present points to the affordability, for every country, of putting in place a basic level of social security for their citizens, and provides testimony showing that some level of social security can be afforded even at early stages of development. The paper outlines basic concepts in social security, analyses the affordability of various approaches, and examines the results of practices around the world, especially in lowand middle-income countries. Attention to gender is paid throughout the guide.

Socio-economic security over the life course: A global review of social protection (prepared for the Ford Foundation’s Social Protection Committee) (2009), Sarah Cook and Naila Kabeer, Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex,, 31 pp.

This paper provides an overview of social protection, with the intention of highlighting innovative approaches. The authors review the evolution of various approaches adopted by national governments and international development agencies, drawing on a set of background studies on Latin America, sub-Saharan Africa, South and East Asia, and selected OECD countries. These papers examine local sources of vulnerability, poverty and exclusion, the varying ways in which people meet their need for security, and the instruments developed by government, communities, NGOs and donors to reduce vulnerability and promote sustainable development outcomes. At the same time, Sarah Cook and Naila Kabeer suggest that there is the beginning of a consensus around the purpose and directions of social protection within development policy and practice, and evidence of some convergence in instruments and their implementation. While gender issues are not really discussed, this paper is extremely helpful in setting out for the reader the state of current (as of 2009) thinking on social protection in the field of development.

Cash transfers

Conditional Cash Transfers: A ‘Pathway to Women’s Empowerment’? Pathways Working Paper 5 (2008), Maxine Molyneux,, 92 pp.

Conditional cash transfers (CCTs) provide mothers of school-age children in extreme poverty with a cash subsidy conditional on their children’s attendance at school and health clinics. Building on Maxine Molyneux’s earlier gender analysis and critique of these programmes, this paper examines evaluations of CCTs in order to assess the evidence for their claim to empower women. It analyses the assumptions underlying the definitions of empowerment used in the evaluations, questions their adequacy, and advances alternative measures of empowerment with a view to stimulating debate about theory, methodology, and policy. It advances three main propositions: first, claims that CCTs empower women are questionable and are weakly supported by the evidence; second, in reinforcing a maternal model of care, CCTs reinforce asymmetrical gender roles and risk establishing a trade-off between children’s and women’s needs for long-term security; and third, given the inequalities in gender relations at household level, programme design needs to encourage a more dynamic model of gender and generational co-operation, which has the potential to generate more positive outcomes for all household members, including fathers, who are otherwise marginalised from the responsibilities of care. A shorter version of this paper is available, as a four page Pathways Brief, at

Change and Continuity in Social Protection in Latin America: Mothers at the Service of the State? (2007), Maxine Molyneux, United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD), /BF80E0A84BE41896C12573240033C541?OpenDocument, 59 pp.

The central argument of this paper is that women’s incorporation into welfare systems in Latin America have always been strongly influenced by women’s symbolic and social roles as mothers. Two contrasting Latin American relief programmes, Progresa/Oportunidades in Mexico and the Comedores Populares in Peru, are discussed, in an attempt to identify the different ways in which gender is, and has been, implicated in the design and management of poverty relief. These two cases are selected as they represent earlier and current approaches to poverty relief. Progresa/Oportunidadesis generally taken as a model case for the new cash transfer anti-poverty programmes being developed in Latin America and has been widely emulated; the Comedores Populares evolved from a grassroots food distribution programme, to become an important safety net for the urban poor. For Maxine Molyneux, the radical challenge to social policy from an equality perspective is to help reconstruct gender relations in both the domestic and public spheres, which in the case of the two programmes discussed would imply ‘dematernalising’ them and encouraging co-operative, egalitarian models of household responsibility. At present, instead, these programmes are retraditionalising the family, and marginalising men from domestic and child-care responsibilities.

Cash transfers and gendered risks and vulnerabilities: lessons from Latin America, Background Note, October (2010), Rachel Holmes, Nicola Jones, Rosana Vargas, and Fabio Veras, ODI,, 6 pp.

The experience of targeted, conditional cash transfers has been well documented and analysed over the last two decades, but the extent to which they address the gendered dimensions of poverty and vulnerability remains an area of debate, with proponents of conditional cash transfers arguing that the regular transfer of cash to women (in their capacity as caregivers) means gains in women’s economic empowerment and their decision-making power in the household and beyond. Other analysts caution that targeting women reinforces their traditional roles as carers and that cash alone is not enough to ensure women’s empowerment. This paper examines the extent to which gendered economic and social risks are addressed in conditional cash transfers in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Peru.

Gendered risks, poverty and vulnerability in Ghana: Is the LEAP Cash Transfer Programme Making a Difference? Project Briefing No. 52 November (2010) Christiana Gbedemah, Nicola Jones and Paola Pereznieto, ODI,, 4 pp.

Social protection has contributed to Ghana’s poverty reduction progress, with programmes being expanded to include the poorest and most vulnerable. This short paper analyses findings from research which explores linkages between gender and social protection effectiveness, focusing on the government’s cash transfer programme, Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP). The research findings were that while LEAP addresses some gender-specific vulnerabilities, such as cost of basic consumption and services, and the ability to repay loans, overall programme effectiveness could be improved through a more consistent targeting approach, gender-related community awareness activities, and inter-sectoral co-ordination to link complementary services.

Walking the Talk: Cash Transfers and Gender Dynamics (2011), Carol Brady, Concern Worldwide and Oxfam GB,, 42 pp.

This report looks at the impacts of cash transfers on gender dynamics within households and communities, and was commissioned as a result of Concern Worldwide and Oxfam’s concerns that while cash transfers, now being used in many different emergency contexts, are expected to benefit women and contribute towards their empowerment, there is little evidence being collected to evaluate whether these expectations are being met. The research included a literature review, programme evaluations from NGOs, and studies from three countries, each experiencing different types of emergency. These were Indonesia (rapid onset, earthquake), Kenya (rapid onset, food price rises) and Zimbabwe (protracted crisis). In all three contexts, women were the primary beneficiaries of the cash transfers. The results of the research will be used to inform future, gender sensitive, cash transfer programmes. Annex 4 of the report gives a table of indicators for providing a gender aware response in emergency cash transfer programmes.


Why Social Pensions are Needed Now. HelpAge International Briefing (2006), HelpAge International,, 12 pp.

Defining social pensions as ‘state-provided non-contributory regular cash transfers to older citizens’, this briefing paper from HelpAge International calls for a universal social pension for all people over 60 years of age. The paper argues that social pensions can help older people realise their rights – allowing them to access services to which they are entitled, for example, health care and medicines / helping to raise older people’s status in the household and the community, and contributing to their dignity and empowerment.

Exploring Gender and Pensions in Japan, Malaysia and Vietnam (2011), Athina Vlachantoni and Jane Falkingham, Centre for Research on Ageing, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton, UK, DP 1101.pdf, 43 pp.

Gender is an important dimension of the way welfare is organised and distributed around the world, and old-age social protection in Asia is no exception. This paper uses evidence from international policy organisations in order to discuss key issues in the area of pension protection from a gender perspective. In particular, the paper draws on the demographic, socio-economic, and policy patterns in three case studies in Asia: Japan, Malaysia, and Viet Nam. The paper argues that formal social protection needs to be understood by policymakers in conjunction with developments in the patterns of informal support networks in these countries, such as remittances, and intra-family support, in order to address the vulnerability faced by women throughout their lifecourse and particularly in later life.

Retirement Income Security for Men and Women, Technical Report 23 (2010), AnnCharlotte Stahlberg, Marcela Cohen Birman, Agneta Kruse, Annika Sunden, International Social Security Association (ISSA), 19 pp.

In this paper, the authors analyse different ways of organising public pension systems, and outline the pros and cons of different features, with respect to gender. The first part of the paper analyses pension systems from a theoretical point of view, and examines to what extent pension schemes in China, France, Ghana, Jordan, Mexico, Poland, and Sweden possess aspects that benefit women. The second part of the paper focuses on empirical evidence mainly from Swedish pension reform. Finally, the authors identify those features in pension systems that are important in preventing poverty for women and for securing income replacement on retirement.

Social protection and migration

Migration and Social Protection: Claiming Social Rights Beyond Borders (2011), Rachel Sabates-Wheeler and Rayah Feldman (eds.) Houndsmills, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN: 9780230245914, website:

In this book, taking a global perspective, contributors present conceptual frameworks, policy analysis, and empirical studies of migrants, and explore the tensions between migrants’ needs for protection, and the practices and policies which may lead to such protection being denied, or in some cases, made available selectively to privileged groups. It also explores the responsibility of sending states to their own citizens who migrate. The book is full of detailed and extremely useful information, but none of the chapters focus directly on gender.

Social Protection of Migrants from the Global South: Protection Gaps and Strategies to ‘Selfinsure’, Briefing No.14, October (2008), Jon Sward and Rachel Sabates-Wheeler, Development Research Centre of Migration, Globalisation & Poverty, University of Sussex,, 4 pp.

In this short paper, the authors argue that although people who migrate across international borders have diverse profiles and needs, there are, nevertheless, four essential components of social protection which are applicable to all migrants. These are: access to social security programmes in host countries; the transferability of migrants’ earned benefits (such as pensions) across international borders; the existence of safe and fair labour market conditions for migrants in host countries; and migrants’ access to social networks, which are informal, but often an important form of social protection. There is also a case study of Malawian documented and undocumented workers strategies to provide themselves and their families with social protection, plus a list of policy recommendations. Unfortunately, however, there is no gender analysis in the paper.


How to Design and Implement Gender-sensitive Social Protection Programmes Toolkit (2010), Rachel Holmes and Nicola Jones, Overseas Development Institute,, 56 pp.

This toolkit aims to support policymakers, programme designers, and programme implementers to apply a gender lens to debates around social protection, to improve the effectiveness of social protection interventions by supporting progress towards gender equality and women’s empowerment. It provides technical and practical guidance on how to integrate a gender perspective into social protection from the first steps of designing a programme, to programme implementation, monitoring, and evaluation.

Manual for Gender Mainstreaming: Employment, Social Inclusion and Social Protection Policies (2008), European Commission,, 38 pp.

This manual, published by the European Commission, is designed to provide policymakers with a practical tool to aid gender mainstreaming in employment, social inclusion, and social protection policies. It suggests several factors to consider when designing social protection policies. For example, do policies include measures to address the needs of specific groups, such as lone parents (availability of child-care), women returning to work (adequately tailored training possibilities), disabled women, as well as ethnic minority or immigrant women? Are the specific needs of women and men considered in the way in which job training is organised / for example through the provision of child-care? The manual then focuses particularly on how to mainstream gender into the earnings-related pension systems in place in EU member states. The manual provides questions to guide policymakers in assessing the gender impact of health and long-term care reforms, such as, are there initiatives to support informal carers, and do policies promote the participation of women and men equally in training and life-long programmes for staff in the field of health and long-term care?


Centre for Social Protection, Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, Library Road, Brighton, BN1 9RE, UK, email:, website:

The Centre for Social Protection (CSP) supports a global network of partners working to mainstream social protection in development policy and encourage social protection systems and instruments that are comprehensive, long-term, sustainable and pro-poor. The Centre produces research on conceptual approaches; design issues, including delivery, targeting, and affordability; and impacts of different social protection (SP) initiatives. On the Centre’s web pages readers can access publications, resources, project, and training information focusing on CSP research themes, which are: Children and SP; Climate Change Adaptation and SP; Conflict and SP; Food Security and Agriculture and SP; Health and SP; HIV and SP: Micro-finance and SP; and Migration and SP. CSP is also home to the Adaptive Social Protection programme (social protection approaches for climate change) and a co-convenor of the Social Protection in Asia (SPA) programme (see below).

International Labour Organization (ILO) Department of Social Security, 4 route des Morillons, 1211 Geneva 22, Switzerland, tel.:41 22 799 7565, fax:41 22 799 7962, email:, website:–en/index.htm

United Nations body the ILO is committed to the provision of social security and social protection as a human right. Its Social Security Department undertakes research and policy development on issues dealing with social security to provide ILO member states with tools and assistance to design sustainable social security schemes, and to manage and administer them more efficiently, with a view to the provision of better benefits and the extension of their coverage. The Department’s website also provides links to relevant ILO documents on social security and social protection, and a link to the Global Extension of Social Security (GESS) online global knowledge sharing platform, which aims to facilitate the exchange of information and ideas, capture and document experiences, identify knowledge gaps, create new knowledge and promote innovation on the extension of social security.

Overseas Development Institute (ODI), 111 Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7JD, UK, tel.:44 (0)20 7922 0300, Fax:44 (0)20 7922 0399, email:, website:

One of UK’s development ‘think tanks’, the ODI’s current areas of work is social protection, and it is publishing a lot of valuable information on the topic. Of particular interest is its output on gender and social development, some of which is summarised above. Working areas within the broader topic of social protection are: Vulnerable groups, social development and social protection, (in which research on gender can be found); Social protection and economic development; The politics of social protection; Social protection and safety nets in risks, shocks and emergencies; and Implementing social protection.

Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), SEWA Reception Centre, Opp. Victoria Garden, Bhadra, Ahmedabad 380 001, India, tel.:91 79 25506444, fax:91 79 25506446, email:, website:

SEWA, the celebrated Indian trade union, was started in 1972, and has a membership made up of poor, self-employed women workers. It describes itself as both an organisation and a movement; a movement made up of three different strands / the labour movement, the co-operative movement, and the women’s movement. SEWA’s main objective is to organise women workers for full employment, which for SEWA means employment from which workers obtain work security, income security, food security, and social security (at least health care, child-care and shelter). As well as organising women and supporting them in building their own workers’ organisations, SEWA also organises campaigns, and provides services to members such as savings, insurance, child-care, and health care, which are run as co-operatives.

Social Protection in Asia (SPA), contact via email:, website:

SPA is a programme in research, advocacy, and network building that aims to create a regional voice and develop a research base for advocating innovative and informed policy on social protection issues. It targets overcoming barriers to the extension of social protection to poor and marginalised groups in Asia and at identifying and promoting innovative forms of social protection which contribute to sustainable poverty reduction and development. The SPA programme involves research, networking and advocacy in order to create a research and policy network on Social Protection in the Asia region. It is jointly managed by the Institute of Development Studies – through its Centre for Social Protection (see above) – at the University of Sussex, UK – and the Institute for Human Development (, New Delhi, India. SPA’s website has research papers and reports from the programme available to download.