insights 80. Cash transfers - to condition or not to condition?

This issue examines these different cash transfers approaches and the evidence for their relative effectiveness


Cash transfers are an increasingly popular social protection mechanism throughout Latin America, where conditional cash transfers are dominant, and sub-Saharan Africa, where unconditional cash transfers are more common. This poverty issue of insights examines these different approaches and the evidence for their relative effectiveness.

The articles in this issue are as follows:

  • Are conditional cash transfers the way out for poor people?
  • Do cash transfers discourage work?
  • Is a universal 'Basic Income Grant' feasible in Namibia?
  • Can cash transfers prevent inter-generational poverty in South Africa?
  • Even if conditionalities work, do women pay the price?
  • Can cash transfers improve gender relations?
  • Are cash transfers susceptible to high food prices?


insights 80, IDS, University of Sussex, Brighton, UK, 8 pp.

Published 1 January 2009