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Reference Document Nr. 14: Social Transfers in the fight against hunger

 This Reference Document is intended as a resource to support the practical integration of social transfers into programmes addressing hunger in development cooperation and aims to build a better understanding of the potential role of social transfers in addressing food insecurity and, in particular, the logic behind the idea of social transfers within the access-to-food component. It seeks to take stock of good practices, experiences, and academic literature on social transfers in the fight against hunger and is based on a review of the international literature on social transfers, food security and social protection, as well as a number of case studies based on current EU Delegation and EU Member States’ interventions on social transfers.

This Reference Document is targeted primarily at development practitioners and aid administrators working within country teams — EU Delegations and offices of Member States. In addition, it is anticipated that the discussions likely to emerge from the guidance here may prove of use to national counterparts and other stakeholders. Where the EC or Member States have funds that are centrally planned and managed, this Reference Document can also be used by head office staff to explore how social transfers could be incorporated into the projects/programmes concerned. It is intended that this Reference Document offers background (terminology and basic features, arguments in favour of social transfers, field-level insights, etc.) for those who are not familiar with social transfers. It can also be a tool to stimulate and guide discussions for individuals already familiar with these types of interventions.
This Reference Document also contains references to a number of useful existing materials for readers who would like to deepen their knowledge on a specific topic. It is, therefore, a resource for practitioners to refer to when they require information on a particular topic: it is not intended to be read through like a report.


Table of Content

1. Introducing social transfers  9
        1.1. Background and rationale  9
        1.2. Scope and purpose of a Reference Document 14
        1.3. Structure of this Reference Document  15
2. Conceptualising social transfers  17
         2.1. Defining social transfers  17
         2.2. Types of social transfers  18
         2.3. Operational frameworks for social transfers  19
         2.4. Policy framework for social transfers  23
3. Justifying social transfers  27
         3.1. Poverty reduction and risk management  27
         3.2. Economic growth and capital-based production  29
         3.3. Political stability and state-building  31
         3.4. Social justice and human rights 32
         3.5. Food security  36
4. Using social transfers to fight hunger  39
         4.1. Social transfers to increase availability of food  40
         4.2. Social transfers to improve access to food  42
         4.3. Social transfers to improve nutritional adequacy of food intake  51
         4.4. Social transfers to enhance crisis prevention and management  54
5. Contextualising social transfers  61
          5.1. Nature and causes of food insecurity  61
          5.2. Policy framework  62
          5.3. Existing social transfer initiatives 64
          5.4. Institutional context and capacity  66
6. Designing social transfers  69
          6.1. Objectives  69
          6.2. Targeting  69
          6.3. Work requirement  71
          6.4. Graduation  73
          6.5. Form of the transfer  75
          6.6. Benefit level  77
          6.7. Delivery mechanisms  78
          6.8. Conditionality  80
7. Managing social transfers  83
          7.1. Cost, affordability and sustainability  83
          7.2. Implementation  84
          7.3. Monitoring and evaluation  87
8. Supporting social transfers  91
          8.1. Policy dialogue  92
          8.2. Capacity development  93
          8.3. Financial resources  94
          8.4. Implementation  95
9. Financing social transfers  97
          9.1. Procurement and grant award 100
          9.2. Common pool funds  102
          9.3. Budget support  103
           Annex 1: Glossary of terms  105
           Annex 2: Further information and guidance  108

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Coralie Mugerin
3 April 2013

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