What makes a social protection system?


The online event raised the question of how to bring a system’s approach to live:

  • What does it require to move from a set of social protection programmes to an overall social protection system? Why have some countries been successful and others are lagging behind?
  • Does a system’s approach always mean that programmes have to be interlinked and how is this feasible in resource and capacity constrained countries?
  • Which social protection programmes can and should be combined? Should they be of the same kind or of different kinds?
  • How can different programmes best be co-ordinated and harmonised with each other? Which governance framework is conducive?
  • How much and what kind of information do they have to exchange? Is data privacy a concern?
  • What are the criteria of a system’s based approach?

After that, the “Handbook of Social Protection Systems” was presented and officially launched. Its 43 chapters and 18 case studies from the Global South, written by 67 authors from all parts of the world, address academics, students and practitioners and provide them with a comprehensive and globally relevant overview of the instruments, actors and design features of social protection systems, as well as their application and impacts in practice. It is the first book that centres around system building globally, a theme that has gained political importance yet has received relatively little attention in academia. It offers practical recommendations on how greater harmonisation across social protection programmes and delivery mechanisms can be achieved but highlights also the importance of linkages to other policy fields.


Chris de Neubourg, Professor at Tilburg University, and Director of Social Policy Research Institute 
Veronika Wodsak, Social Protection Policy Specialist, ILO
Benson Chisanga, Lecturer, University of Zambia
Garima Bhalla, Economist and Social Protection Specialist, FAO


Esther Schüring, Professor, Bonn Rhein-Sieg University of Applied Sciences
Markus Loewe, Research Team Leader, DIE