Protecting the Poor from COVID-19 Shock

What role do cash transfers and social protection schemes play in mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 crisis? What additional implementation and design features should policy-makers consider in developing their cash transfer and other social protection programs to ensure ease of access for vulnerable populations to these schemes? What are some strategies to strengthen health systems in response to the pandemic to ensure continuity of health services? 

Over the last several decades, government agencies in India at both the national and state level have introduced a number of cash transfer programs that aim to improve educational, maternal and child health, girl child or other social welfare outcomes. However, there is limited credible evidence on the impact of these programs on outcomes. CaTCH aims to rigorously study these programs and understand their impacts on child health. The upcoming series of webinars is designed to share answers to the questions that CaTCH-funded research has investigated, and provide evidence-based insights to decision-makers on how to strengthen safety nets and healthcare to protect the poor during the COVID-19 crisis.

Speakers: Rema Hanna, Jeffrey Cheah Professor of South-East Asia Studies, Harvard Kennedy School; Benjamin Olken, Professor of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Director, J-PAL