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​Newsletter Poverty-Wellbeing December 2022 |  Reversing poverty and inequality trends, Inclusive Social Protection Systems & LNOB

The year 2022 is coming to an end. The much-needed recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic has been hampered by other crises, new and ongoing: wars, droughts, a resulting surge in food prices. The human development index has fallen two years in a row and global poverty levels have increased! Have a look at our December newsletter»​

Stephanie Guha / December 2022

​WB Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2022: Correcting Course

Global progress in reducing extreme poverty has virtually come to a halt. The 2022 edition of the World Bank’s Poverty and Shared Prosperity series provides the latest estimates and trends in global poverty, and – after a series of shocks to the global economy – they are not good. While the multiple crises driving this halt are known, the report also analyses the ways in which governments have reacted to support the most vulnerable groups. As the title suggests, a major course correction is called for. Focusing on fiscal policy mainly, a key priority action identified is that government spending should move away from subsidies toward a support that is directly targeted to poor and vulnerable groups. Read full report»

 Alex Sieber / December 2022​​​​​​​​​​​

​UNRISD Flagship Report 2022: Crises of Inequality

The UN’s Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) has published its 2022 Flagship report entitled Crises of Inequality: Shifting Power for a New Eco-Social Contract. Inequalities and crises reinforce and compound each other. This was devastatingly illustrated by the global pandemic during which the wealth of the 10 richest people has doubled while more than 120 million people were pushed into extreme poverty. The UNRISD report explores these connections and argues that such inequalities are in fact built into the system and the result of policy choices. As a way out, the report proposes the creation of a new eco-social contract based on alternative economies, transformative social policies, and reimagined multilateralism and strengthened solidarities. Read more»

 Alex Sieber / December 2022​​​​​​​​​​

​UNDP / DIE Literature Review | Governance and Poverty: Connections that matter

How does the quality of governance institutions affect progress on the reduction of poverty and inequality? The UNDP’s Oslo Governance Centre and the German Development Institute (DIE) have investigated this question by systematically reviewing 58 articles published on the topic. As written in the foreword, the complexity of the current crises requires tackling multiple issues at the same time – and knowing how action on one impacts the other.

The review found clear evidence that the institutional qualities of accountability, transparency and inclusion enable the reduction of key aspects of poverty and inequality. This effect is most pronounced for the ‘enablers’ of transparency and inclusion. While it is valuable to have a consolidated analysis of these relationships, the general finding does hardly come as a surprise. Indeed, it is part of the reason why the SDC considers governance a transversal theme across all its projects and programmes. Within the newly founded Peace, Governance and Equality Section (PGE), the topics of poverty and inequality reduction and governance are now also institutionally closer. Read more»

 Alex Sieber / December 2022​​​​​​​​

​UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), 2022: Steps to Inclusive Social Protection Systems

Governments have increasingly recognized social protection as a key policy instrument to build a more productive, protected and healthy population. In the Asia Pacific region, in 2020, ESCAP member states endorsed the regional ESCAP Action Plan to Strengthen Regional Cooperation on Social Protection. The ESCAP Action Plan lays out 12 measures to be taken at the national level. To support member States in the implementation of this first ever regional Action Plan, ESCAP has been mandated to develop a regional platform to facilitate peer learning and enhance the knowledge and awareness of member States to implement the ESCAP Action Plan. Find below the Steps to Inclusive Social Protection Systems setting out 12 milestones for developing an integrated and sustainable social protection system, which has the buy-in of key actors, guarantees the right to social protection for all, addresses gaps in current social protection systems, identifies solutions to support sustainable financing, removes inefficiencies and fragmentation in delivery and administration, and responds to shocks more efficiently and effectively. This guide may also be interesting for other regions. Find out more»​​​

Stephanie Guha / December 2022

​Southern African Social Protection Experts Network (SASPEN): Was COVID-19 good or bad for social protection?

This Special brief is based on the keynote address by Prof. Stephen Devereux at the 9th SASPEN Annual Conference in 2022, themed, “Social Protection at a Crossroads: Between COVID-19 and the SDGs – Southern African Perspectives.” It looks at the onset of COVID-19, the impact of the pandemic, and the response to the pandemic by African countries. But before delving into this key question, the author looks at the recent history of social protection in Africa broken down into 4 phases; the inception, expansion, consolidation and institutionalisation of social protection. The brief then addresses the key question by showing the influence the pandemic had on social protection systems in African countries, drawing particular attention to the gaps in the systems, as well as possible outcomes when it comes to the individual countries priorities in the next few years. Read more»

Barbara Rohregger / December 2022​​

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