Workshop on social protection for social cohesion

The primary objective of social protection, especially in low- and middle-income countries, is to tackle poverty and vulnerability. In addition, it is often argued that social protection schemes or systems have the potentiality to achieve other objectives such as empowering vulnerable groups, incentivizing beneficiaries to engage in more remunerative economic activities, and promoting social cohesion. Social cohesion can be defined as “both, the vertical and the horizontal relations among members of society and the state as characterized by a set of attitudes and norms that includes trust, an inclusive identity, and cooperation for the common good”.

With regard to social cohesion, however, the mechanisms through which social protection can generate important benefits are not entirely clear: most of the available conceptual frameworks focus on high-income countries, in particular Scandinavian ones. Moreover, the empirical evidence of the impacts of social protection on social cohesion is extremely scarce. The Workshop taking place at the German Development Institute/ Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) on 4-5 December 2019 intends to fill this gap.

The Workshop will bring together researchers from different disciplines to discuss the effects of social protection on social cohesion. Given the complexity of the concept of social cohesion, which incorporates both horizontal relationships (between individuals and groups) and vertical relationships (between individuals/groups and national institutions) we welcome abstracts that:

  • Focus on the effects of social protection on social cohesion or specific elements of social cohesion, such as horizontal and vertical trust, social capital, solidarity between the people, feeling of belonging to the state, willingness to co-operate with other individuals/groups, and willingness to pay taxes;
  • Focus on the effects of social protection on intermediate outcomes, such as inequality.
  • Focus on the analysis of how different design and implementation features of social protection schemes – such as targeting methods as well as political economy factors – mediate the relationship between social protection and social cohesion;
  • Focus on the conceptualization of the relationship between social protection and social cohesion, with particular reference to low- and middle-income countries.

Funds are available to cover travel expenses for a limited number of participants.

Please send your abstract (500-600 words) to: [email protected] until 12 September 2019.

Notification of acceptance: 30 September 2019.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us:

Francesco Burchi: [email protected]

Markus Loewe: [email protected]

Daniele Malerba: [email protected]

Christoph Strupat: [email protected]