Aligning social protection and climate resilience: A case study of MGNREGA and MGNREGA-EB in Andhra Pradesh

Social protection and climate change programmes are two public policy responses that governments use to address the challenges of poverty, climate vulnerability and gender inequality. Social protection programmes provide a safety net for households by providing cash/asset transfers and labour market instruments to address the immediate and underlying socioeconomic risks facing the poor. Climate change programmes use a range of policy, financial, technological and capacity-strengthening measures to address climate change vulnerability. Despite the fact that most countries have comprehensive strategies for both social protection and climate change, there have been few attempts to align the two to develop more durable pathways out of poverty and climate vulnerability. This paper is the first of two case studies that examines how aligning social protection and climate change interventions could help households manage the risks they face, and set themselves on a path out of poverty and into climate-resilient livelihoods.

It presents a case study of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) and the MGNREGA-Environmental Benefits programme (MGNREGA-EB) in India, based on fieldwork in the southeastern state of Andhra Pradesh.