There is a growing consensus concerning the forms of politics that are
most likely to lead to successful forms of pro-poor policy, including
the role of decentralisation and civil society, evidence-based policy
and the opening of policy to the poor. This paper critically explores
this consensus by examining the extent to which these forms of politics
have underpinned actual examples of successful poverty reducing
interventions. The focus here is on social protection policies, namely
old age pension schemes in India, Lesotho, Namibia, and South Africa,
vulnerable group assistance programmes in Bangladesh and Mozambique, and
recent efforts to mainstream social protection within national
development plans in Uganda and Zambia. This comparative case-study
analysis reveals that the consensus bears little resemblance to the
actual politics of what works in terms of implementing and sustaining
policies for the poorest. A synthesis suggests the need to shift
attention towards political rather than civil society, to issues of
discourse and ideology rather than simply poverty data, and to a closer
understanding of how political contracts for social protection might be
supported and developed.
Hickey, S. (2007) The Politics of What Works in Reducing Chronic Poverty- A synthesis report for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Netherlands. Working Paper 91. Manchester: IDPM/Chronic Poverty Research Centre (CPRC), UK, ISBN 1-904049-90-7, xii + 55 pp.
The politics of what works in reducing chronic poverty a synthesis report for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands. CPRC Working Paper 91.