Designing and Implementing Social Transfer Programmes in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Around the world, developing countries are increasingly recognising the value of social transfer programmes in reducing extreme poverty, with success stories in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The Economic Policy Research Institute (EPRI) and HelpAge International, together with the Maastricht Graduate School of Governance and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) are offering a two-week course including a number of specialised modules aimed at providing participants with an in-depth understanding of the conceptual and practical issues involved in the development of social transfer programmes. Participants have an option to take each week as standalone courses, thus it is possible to attend the first week core course only or one of the second week specialised topic electives.  


At the end of these courses, the successful participant will better understand the comprehensive approach to social protection and how appropriate cash transfer instruments can reduce poverty and vulnerability and promote developmental outcomes. These courses will reinforce the skills required to identify, design and implement effective social transfer programmes. A team of international experts, skilled professionals and leaders in the field will teach the course. The certificated course will bejointly accredited by the UNU-MERIT/ Maastricht Graduate School of Governance, the Economic Policy Research Institute and HelpAge International. 

This module provides participants with an in-depth and practical understanding of how new and existing social transfer programmes can be designed and implemented so as to promote livelihoods, increase financial inclusion, and achieve developmental outcomes. The module will detail successful international case studies and this will be applied within an evidence building framework to identify workable approaches for different country contexts. 


The first five days of the course includes a coordinated series of themeoriented sessions, practical skills-building workshops, field trips to visit social transfer sites and relevant technical skills training. The course will be taught using formal lectures, practical case studies and hands-on exercises. 

Topics will include:

- The role of cash transfers in reducing poverty, vulnerability and social exclusion

- The identification of appropriate social transfer instruments for specific country contexts

- The design of cash transfer programmes

- Implementation issues, including registration, targeting,  payment and information systems

- Monitoring and evaluation approaches for social transfer  programmes

- Case studies of successful programmes around the world

- Field trips to see Thailand’s social transfer system in action 

The course aims to build the capacity of government policymakers  and officials, representatives from bilateral and multilateral agencies, programme practitioners and staff members from non-governmental organisations. The course will serve those who want to more effectively design, implement and manage social transfer programmes with  the goal of reducing poverty and better achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. 

Download brochure here.