Do Public Works Programmes Work? Design and implementation features for programme success


Nearly two-thirds of low and middle-income countries have public works programmes (PWPs), providing income support in exchange for work. PWPs combine the objectives of providing temporary paid employment, creating public infrastructure assets, and upgrading the skills of workers. But are public works programmes more effective than simple cash transfers? Are PWPs able to create assets and skills that deliver additional benefits on incomes, food security, employment, agricultural practices, or education?

During this interactive session, researchers and practitioners have discussed two new studies that provide a systematic review of evidence on PWPs in Africa: 

If you could not attend the live session, watch the recording to learn why impacts vary widely between programmes, and which programme design and implementation features are crucial for realising the potential for greater impacts. The presentation and discussion of the results are valuable for practitioners and policymakers dealing with decision making on designing and implementing PWPs.


Michael Grimm - Professor of Development Economics and Dean, University of Passau

Stefan Beierl - Research Assistant at the Chair of Development Economics, University of Passau


Rajeev Ahal - Project Director of Natural Resource Management in India, GIZ


Ralf Radermacher - Head of Social Protection Sector Initiative, GIZ