Social Protection in Uganda: Study to Inform the Development of a Framework for Social Protection in the Context of the Poverty Eradication Action Plan

Phase I Report: Vulnerability Assessment & Review of Initiatives

This report concludes Phase I of the study on Social Protection in Uganda. Uganda has made a great deal of progress in recent years in terms of analysing poverty, including implementing a highly influential Participatory Poverty Assessment to complement quantitative household surveys. Uganda has also compiled a Poverty Eradication Action Plan that has served as a model for Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers across the world. Despite these innovative methodologies and strategy documents, certain gaps in understanding and strategising remain. On the analysis side, poverty in Uganda is understood in rather static terms, even though there are dynamic processes at work – such as HIV/AIDS, and conflict or insecurity – that are influencing poverty headcounts and trends to a highly significant degree. This suggests the need for an analysis of vulnerability and risk to complement the standard quantitative and qualitative understanding of poverty in Uganda.

This paper attempts to broaden the analysis of vulnerability and strategising to protect the vulnerable in Uganda, within a conceptual framework derived from the emerging literature on ‘social protection’ policy. The paper has four objectives:

  1. to define social protection in the Ugandan context and develop a conceptual framework that captures the main sources of vulnerability;
  2. to analyse current vulnerability in Uganda within the conceptual framework developed;
  3. to review programmes and projects that provide ‘social protection’ of various kinds to the vulnerable in Uganda;
  4. to identify information gaps and make recommendations on the development of social protection policies needed for a comprehensive attack on vulnerability in Uganda.