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In 1994 South Africa saw the end of apartheid. The new era of political freedom was seen as the foundation for economic prosperity and inclusion. The last two decades have seen mixed results. Economic growth has been volatile. While inequalities in public services have been reduced, income inequality has increased, and poverty has remained stagnant. As the twentieth anniversary of the transition to democracy approaches in 2014, the economic policy debates in South Africa are in full flow. They combine a stocktake of the various programs of the last two decades with a forward looking discussion of strategy in the face of an ever open but volatile global economy. Underlying the discourse are basic and often unresolved differences on an appropriate strategy for an economy like South Africa, with a strong natural resource base but with deeply entrenched inherited inequalities, especially across race. This volume contributes to the policy and analytical debate by pulling together perspectives on a range of issues: micro, macro, sectoral, country wide and global, from leading economists working on South Africa. Other than the requirement that it be analytical and not polemical, the contributors were given freedom to put forward their particular perspective on their topic. The economists invited are from within South Africa and from outside; from academia and the policy world; from international and national level economic policy agencies. The contributors include recognized world leaders in South African economic analysis, as well as the very best of the younger crop of economists who are working on the study of South Africa, the next generation of leaders in thought and policy.
Social protection is fast becoming an important theme in development policy. This book examines the political processes shaping social protection policies; compares the key conceptual frameworks available for analyzing social protection; and provides a comparative discussion on social protection policies focused on the poor and the poorest.
A new generation of innovative social protection strategies is emerging in southern Africa. Although cash transfers are most prevalent, some country strategies include combinations of interventions such as food, livelihood inputs and support, asset building, public works and social services. The strategies vary in their commitment to social rights, their institutional and funding arrangements, the reach, scope and design of the programmes, and the behavioural conditions attached to grant access. The proliferation of national social protection in the Global South has been widely supported by governments, international agencies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs).This book offers researchers and policymakers much to think about when considering the rapid growth of social protection in southern Africa, the challenges this presents and the opportunities it offers for social development and economic growth. Hence, the book is a contribution to scholarship and policy debate on how to solve intractable social development problems in Africa and elsewhere.This book was originally published as a special issue of Development Southern Africa.
A review of the conceptual underpinnings and operational elements of public works programs around the world., drawing from a rich evidence base and analyzing previously unassimilated data, to fill a gap in knowledge related to public works programs, now so popular.
In Mainstreaming Gender in Social Protection for the Informal Economy Naila Kabeer explores the gendered dimensions of risk, vulnerability and insecurity and hence 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 book will enhance understanding of the constraints and barriers that confine women to more poorly remunerated, more casual and more insecure forms of waged and self-employment, and of what this implies for women’s ability to provide for their families and cope with insecurity. Kabeer develops a framework of analysis that 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. She also stresses the importance of an organised voice for vulnerable and marginalised workers.Finally, the author synthesises the main lessons that emerge out of the discussion and identifies gaps and exclusions in the social protection agenda.
This book presents recent World Bank analytical work on the causes of violence and conflict in Columbia and the pilot lending programmes which have been designed to promote peace and help development. It is divided into three sections. The first sets the framework for the history of violence and the mechanisms of its propagation, looks at its costs and also at current policy initiatives to reduce it. The second part looks at the social economic causes of conflict and the costs of achieving peace. The last part reviews the recent experience of the World Bank in assisting countries that are experiencing, or have overcome, domestic armed conflict.

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