Social safety nets in fragile and conflict-affected states

Social safety nets in fragile and conflict-affected states often include cash and in-kind transfers, school feeding programmes and public works programmes (O’Brien, Scott, Smith, Barca, Karden, Holmes, Watson & Congrave, 2018). Programmes often target vulnerable households, refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) in order to reduce their exposure to shocks and recourse to negative coping strategies, and to strengthen social cohesion (see for example, AlAhmadi & de Silva, 2018). In protracted crises, humanitarian actors frequently use social safety net approaches and there is overlap between humanitarian assistance and social protection (O’Brien et al., 2018). In addition to safety nets, social protection programmes in fragile and conflict-affected states can also target government institutions, building the government’s capacity to deliver longer-term social protection programmes. The country examples presented in this review illustrate that even if government-led social protection programmes exist, for example national cash transfer programmes, fragility and conflict affects and can destroy their ability to function.