Social protection and how do we get to grips with politics and power?


by Duncan Green, Oxfam GB

“Social protection (…) has mushroomed from fringe issue to magic bullet with extraordinary speed. If the SP advocates really have won the argument on this, the next stage will involve a lot more experimentation and evidence. What kinds of SP? Who for? How much does it cost? Who benefits? Do shocks and crises provide the best conditions for its introduction? What sort of political contexts help/hinder? Sub-categories of SP and SP research will develop further: SP and gender/children/older people; urban v rural; SP and climate change; SP for migrants; SP and disability. How can SP be scaled up from local to national to global? When is SP counterproductive, eg feeding clientilism or welfare dependence, or exacerbating gender disparities? Lots of this is already being studied, but plenty still to do.”

Read the rest of Duncan’s blog at:


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