Policy Brief: Impacts of Unconditional Cash Transfers

by Johannes Haushofery and Jeremy Shapiroz
Innovations for Poverty Action, October 24, 2013

38 pp. 619 kB:
http://web.mit.edu/joha/www/publications/Haushofer_Shapiro_Policy_Brief_UCT_2013.10.22.pdf

In recent years, cash transfers have garnered attention as a potential alternative poverty alleviation strategy, and cash transfer programs in developing countries now reach up to a billion people. However, the majority of these transfers are conditional, or targeted at specific groups of individuals. Truly unconditional cash transfers to general populations are relatively less common and less well understood, both in terms of their impacts, and in terms of how their design affects these impacts. The authors found that cash transfers of US$ 300 or US$ 1,100 to 500 poor Kenyan families helped reduce hunger, improve living conditions and increase investment in livestock and small businesses.

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